City Working Out Requirement to Rev up Waste Program
April 25, 2015
BAGUIO CITY – Waste program implementors here are working on the main requirement to jumpstart the Integrated Solid Waste Management System (ISWMS), a multi-strategy program for the long-term solution of the city’s garbage woes.
City general services officer Romeo Concio of the City Solid Waste Management Board said the city is in the process of bidding out through negotiated procurement the waste analysis and characterization system (WACS), which will serve as the basis of all solid waste projects in the city and even the ten-year solid waste management plan.
He said the WACS contains primary data needed to determine the viability of solid waste projects and thus is essential to the implementation of the ISWMS.
Concio also said that regular biddings for the WACS failed so the city will undertake the negotiated mode.
Concio also said the CSWMB has withdrawn the proposed terms of reference for the engineered sanitary landfill (ESL) earlier submitted to the city council for approval deciding to pursue the project alongside the other component strategies of the ISWMS.
The board earlier thought of advancing the implementation of the ESL as an immediate solution for the city to stop hauling its waste to outside facilities but the city council balked at the piecemeal pursuit of the ISWMS and questioned some of the terms including the cost and the life span of the proposed facility.
Concio explained that the ESL is intended only as a support facility or as a stop-gap waste strategy while the city is still constructing the waste-to-energy technology which is the main strategy of the ISWMS thus they did not plan for a larger facility with a longer life span.
“In fact, if we can help it we really do not want to construct an ESL because of its effect on the environment. Climate change program advocates are now wary of the effect of the methane gas being emitted by the ESL facilities that there is now a pending proposal at the United Nations to ban these facilities,” Concio said.
Mayor Mauricio Domogan when told of the council’s question on the short life span of the proposed ESL said, “To me, the shorter the lifespan is, the better for the city because even the World Health Organization is now discouraging ESL because of their seepage underground. Until now, there is no concrete finding on their long-term effect to the environment,” he said.
The city’s ISWMS consists of several waste management strategies intended for long-term management of the city’s wastes among which a waste-to-energy technology, a central material recovery facility, anaerobic digester and health care waste treatment facility, the Environmental Recycling System (ERS) machines and the ESL “if needed.”
The city is eyeing its 130-hectare property reserved for the public need at Mt. Sto. Tomas to house the ISWMS which is now the subject of feasibility study.
The city council last Monday reiterated an earlier request to the city assessor’s office to plot the area on its projection or to “tax map” the same to protect it from land speculation.
Councilor Isabelo Cosalan Jr. recalled an approved resolution in 2010 to protect the said land located at Barangays Camp 7, Bakakeng Norte, Sto. Tomas Proper and Sto. Tomas School Area has been identified for multi-land use specifically for engineered sanitary landfill, housing, government office and facility sites among others.
He said that in the 2010 resolution, it was noted that the lot has been identified by the City Land Needs Identification and Survey Committee for multi-land use specifically for engineered sanitary landfill, housing, government office and facility sites among others.
The body also approved Councilor Betty Lourdes Tabanda’s move to ask the city planning and development office to submit a comprehensive plan for multi-purpose use within 15 days./Aileen P. Refuerzo and Paul Rillorta