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Baguio problematic over disposal of garbage

Thursday, July 24, 2008 [ manilatimes.net ]

BAGUIO CITY: City Mayor Reinaldo Bautista admitted the city has yet to identify where to dump the city’s 144 tons of garbage daily but assured the residents that it should be resolved as soon as the neighboring towns of Itogon, Sablan and Tuba approve the city’s proposal.

City administrator and lawyer Peter Fianza said that as of this time there is an agreement to use the Clark dump in Pampanga, although the controlled dump facilities in Capas, Tarlac, and in Naguilian, La Union, are also being considered.

While there are several options available, Fianza said none of these municipalities have approved the Baguio City proposal. In addition, areas in Loakan-Apugan, Dontogan, Camp 7, Pula and Sto. Tomas-Apugan in Baguio, and Tuba and Ambuklao Road in Benguet are also being considered as temporary dumps.

Fianza said that technical men from the general services office and the engineering office made an evaluation and suggested that only the site in Virac, Itogon, Benguet was identified as the most suitable for an engineered sanitary landfill.

Before finalizing the plans, the residents of Virac, Itogon, need to approve of the proposal, which is now the concern of both local officials from Baguio City and from the Itogon municipality.

Fianza explained that the city council recently held a meeting with the solid waste technical committee and reported that they have not decided whether to use the Clark or Tarlac dump because of the expenses involved.

For the meantime, waste collectors have begun collecting garbage from the city market, in the business district, and in barangays.

All these will be brought to the Irisan dump, a temporary transfer station.

“Waste will be limited to residual materials only. Biodegradable waste will be handled at the barangay level. Waste collection will remain to be irregular pending identification of a suitable final disposal area,” Fianza said. --Thom F. Picaña

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