Benguet Corp. open site assessed for environmental compliance

BAGUIO CITY – Technical personnel of the city government and the Itogon-based Benguet Corporation (BC) are now conducting the assessment and evaluation of the company’s open pit site in Antamok to ascertain whether or not it will be able to pass the standards for the put up of the city’s integrated solid waste management facility, Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan said here.

The city mayor underscored that after the assessment and evaluation, the technical teams will be inviting concerned officials and technical personnel of the Environmental Management bureau (ENB) and the National Solid Waste Commission (NSWMC) for revalidation and re-evaluation of the site in order for the city government to finalize where to finally put up its planned integrated solid waste disposal facility.

“We have to be able to identify which among the existing sites will be the most feasible and with the least development cost so that we will be able to focus our resources for the immediate realization of the project that will eventually solve the city’s garbage problem,” Domogan stressed.

Earlier, BC management offered to the city government the possible use of its open pit site in Antamok for its engineered sanitary landfill or integrated solid waste disposal facility to help the city government and other neighboring towns of Benguet solve their garbage disposal problems.

Under the planned integrated solid waste disposal facility, the city government plans to put up a centralized materials recovery facility, a waste to energy plant, an anaerobic digester, Environmental Recycling system (ERS) machines, engineered sanitary landfill, health care and medical waste treatment plant and a special waste treatment plant in order to permanently solve the current garbage disposal woes of the city.

The city earlier planned to put up the integrated solid waste disposal facility within the 139-hectare city-owned property in Sto. Tomas School area but the prohibitive development cost in building the access roads to the site aggravated by some issues on land claims compelled local officials to consider the offer of BC to use its open pit site as a site for its solid waste disposal facility.

Domogan said the final results of the on-going technical evaluation of the BC open pit site will serve as the basis of the city solid waste management board to partially amend its 10-year solid waste management plan that was approved by the NSWMC, specifically on the site on where to put up the facility, in order for the concerned offices to finalize existing plans and programs for the eventual realization of the project.

While the city is looking for a permanent site on how to dispose its garbage, the hauling of garbage to the engineered sanitary landfill in the lowlands will continue in order to prevent the residual waste from being stored in the staging area of the hauler in Longlong, Puguis, La Trinidad, Benguet./Dexter A. See


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