Cimatu mulls ban on single-use plastic in Boracay

 

Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu is “seriously considering” a ban on single-use plastic items in Boracay to address its growing garbage problem.

The pollution-challenged island generates an estimated 90 to 115 tons of garbage a day, but only 30 to 40 tons are hauled out to mainland Malay, Aklan.

A large portion of Boracay’s trash is composed of single-use plastic products such as grocery bags, toothbrush, bottled water, sachets of shampoo and condiments, and soap wrappers, among others.

Cimatu said that prohibiting the use of single-use plastic products would not only help solve the island’s solid waste problem but also plastic pollution that threatens its marine environment.

“Plastic, particularly those for single-use packaging, has greatly contributed to the degradation of the environment,” Cimatu pointed out.

He added: “Plastic pollution continues to poison our oceans and injure marine life. When not properly disposed, they clog waterways and cause flooding.”

Cimatu said hotels will be encouraged to use dispensers for their liquid soap, shampoo and conditioner; while stores will be asked to sell condiments like soy sause, vinegar and cooking oil through refilling stations.

“Let us go back to basics. We used to bring a glass bottle to the sari-sari store when we buy cooking oil and vinegar. Let’s do the same now,” he said.

National Solid Waste Management Commission executive director Eligio Ildefonso supports a ban on single-use plastic items not only in Boracay, but all over the country.

“Single-use plastic is what its name says, for single-use,” Ildefonso pointed out. “It cannot be recycled and reused; people have no motivation to recover it. It has no further use so it should be discouraged.”

Ildefonso encourages the use of eco-bags when buying wet and dry goods. “Eco-bags can be reused; you can wash them; they do not contribute to solid waste,” he explained.

Boracay was closed to tourists on April 26 to give way to a six-month rehabilitation from environmental degradation mainly due to garbage and wastewater problems.

Last year, Cimatu ordered the removal of at least 20,000 cubic meters of residual waste from Boracay’s materials recovery facility (MRF) in Barangay Manoc-Manoc, which was used as an open dumpsite.

The huge volume of solid waste caused a longer turnaround time for garbage hauling trucks, thus resulting in accumulation of garbage and delay in its transfer to the sanitary landfill in mainland Malay.

Republic Act No. 9003, or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, mandates local government units to have a comprehensive solid waste management plan and establish an MRF in each barangay to efficiently receive, sort, process and store compostable and recyclable materials.

The law strictly prohibits the establishment and operation of open dumpsites. ###

News

Over 2,500 volunteers to join simultaneous river cleanup in MIMAROPA on March 22

 

Over 2,5000 volunteers from all walks of life are expected to show up and do their part in cleaning up 11 rivers simultaneously in MIMAROPA region in celebration of World Water Day on March 22.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources - MIMAROPA said on Tuesday, numerous individuals, local government units, non-government organizations, the academe, religious groups, and even multinational companies have been signifying their support to the agency’s simultaneous river cleanup drive.

Dubbed “Water for all now and foRiver,” the activity  takes off from the theme of this year’s World Water Day celebration, “Water for all, leaving no one behind,” and the concerted efforts of various stakeholders to save rivers from pollution, and achieve safe water for the present and future generations.

It targets to clean and eventually improve the water quality of the following rivers in MIMAROPA, namely Sabang River (Sablayan) and Pandurucan River (San Jose) in Occidental Mindoro; Calapan River in Oriental Mindoro; Boac River in Marinduque; Bangon-Bongoy River in Romblon; and Umalad River (Roxas), Abongan River (Taytay), Tagburos River (Puerto Princesa), Sitio Manggahan 1 and 2, and Bakawan Creeks (Coron), Buligay River (Brooke’s Point), and Panitian River (Quezon) in Palawan.

“It is a big event. The preparations are no joke. Our Environmental Management Bureau, our Provincial and Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices, and even our staff from the Mines and Geosciences Bureau are joining forces to make this activity possible,’ DENR MIMAROPA Regional Executive Director Henry Adornado remarked.

“It brings us great relief knowing that we are not  alone in this endeavor,” he said.

As of press time, more volunteers are confirming their attendance, and various groups are signifying their intent to “adopt” a river.

“This only shows that the public is getting more involved in protecting and saving our environment. Kaya ngayon pa lang po, lubos na kaming nagpapasalamat sa lahat ng mga nagpahayag ng kanilang suporta,” the Director expressed.

Rivers are essential to all living beings. It is one of the sources of water, and serves as habitat of various fish species that provide livelihood and food to people. Due to negligence however, many rivers are now polluted and are under threat from human activities.

“Let us not wait for our rivers to die. Let us act together as One MIMAROPA towards a single and noble purpose so that we can achieve water for all, now and foRiver,” RED Adornado concluded.

To those who wish to join the river cleanup drive, please see details on fb.com/denrmimaropa and mimaropa.gov.ph. ###  

Photo Releases

January 27, 2019. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources – MIMAROPA Region supports the “Battle for Manila Bay,” the 192-kilometer harbour that has become part of its home for decades now.

 

"Hindi po magiging ganito kaganda ang El Nido kung hindi ito nai-proklama bilang isang Protected Area."

-Vice Mayor Leonor Corral

DENR Palawan and CENRO PPC personnel joined the 1st SUBARAW Biodiversity Festival Parade and Float Competition last November 11, 2018 at Puerto Princesa City, Palawan

"Di po namin kaya kung kami lang sa DENR ang kikilos kaya nagpapasalamat po kami sa ating lokal na pamahalaan at mga partner agencies na kasama namin sa nakaraan at sa susunod pang 20 taon ng pangangalaga sa El Nido."

-Regional Executive Director Henry A. Adornado

"Napakasarap po sa pakiramdam na sa nakaraan 20 taon, nabigyan ako ng pagkakataon mapangalagaan at maprotektahan ang El Nido, ang ating kalikasan. Makakaasa po ang ating mga kababayan, ang DENR, na patuloy nating poprotektahan ang El Nido, dahil ito ay ating tahanan"

-Mayor Nieves Rosento

Themed "Nurturing shared responsibility for biodiversity conservation, the event celebrates two decades of concerted efforts of various stakeholders in protecting, saving and conserving El Nido

Taytay CENRO Pablo Cruz welcomes guests at the 20th anniversary celebration of ENTMRPA. "We thank you and reconize your roles in making our activities in 2018 successful and meaningful."

Turn-over Ceremony of EMB-MIMAROPA Regional Director

Let's explore the TAMWorld! A photo and art exhibit organized by Far Eastern University in celebration of Tamaraw Month this October.

Hataw Tamaraw!

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