Recycling a crony-oriented, filthy garbage system?-A A +A
By Dr. Bob Ocio
Isyo ug Servicio
Thursday, September 5, 2013
MAYOR Moreno must come up with a transparent consultative study and process in order to provide a comprehensive and integrated garbage collection and waste management program which is both cost effective and environmentally relevant to the changing times.
Do we really think that the city saves money from privatizing the system? We are rolling back into an old system of dumping garbage in the landfill which stinks with nothing but destructive, unhealthy, poisonous and badly odorous methane gas into the city’s atmosphere.
What are the track records of the Quezon and Manila based companies supposedly tapped by the mayor after all? Nothing. But smokey mountains which are the same polluting ugly, environmentally disastrous systems that also contaminate poisonous liquid into our underground water aquifer. Numerous volumes of garbage remained uncollected because costs are bloated while services are wanting.
The immediate past contractor suddenly rescinded the contract and the garbage problem suddenly became more chaotic. Were there stipulations in the contract if in fact there was, which protected our city from such a unilateral action? If not then we should know. If yes, then they should be paying the high cost of penalties. How much money was wasted from such a contract in terms of cost and benefit ratio if it would have been run by the government?
Edwin Dael, head of the Clenro, made some pioneering efforts in Bgy. Gusa to segregate and convert biodegradable materials into compost. Edwin can actually take the lead to modernize our aged garbage collection system. The next step would have been to deal with the plastics for conversion to fuel which is already available.
The problem with privatization is that it will suck us more money and opportunity to keep an efficient and less costly garbage management system on a long term. Instead of recycling the garbage, we are instead recycling an old crony system.
Then, there is Republic Act 9003 Section 37, Article 6 which states that “No open dumps shall be operated and established and operated, nor any practice or disposal of solid waste by any person, including LGUs, which constitutes the use of open dumps for solid waste, be allowed after the effectiveness of said Act...”
I don't believe that the city cannot buy the 80 dump trucks Oca is mentioning. I figured out that it can be cheaper on a long term plus added benefits compared with the amount we are paying to the private contractors.
Mag contractor ba kita kun walay ganansya nga minilyon? Yet, that is only part of the consideration. The greater part is the quality of services we can have if we stretch our budget and improve our systems which also in effect will help us generate money and resources out of the waste like organic fertilizers and fuel out of the garbage and the basic concerns for the environment like methane gas and poisonous liquid byproducts which are dangerous to the health conditions of our people.
If the city can reportedly pay P6 to P12 million monthly to privately owned crony garbage companies, why can't it buy garbage trucks plus added equipment for recycling and keep up with an efficient garbage collection system?
A hugely populated and terribly congested city like CDO must come up with a plan and system to segregate and recycle the garbage efficiently. To be able to do that, we cannot rely on environmentally and economically unsustainable, profit oriented companies to suck our coffers with decade old pollutant systems. We have to innovate and keep up with the changing times.
Keep the faith! Make the difference!
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 05, 2013.