Private dump in Umapad illegal: EMB 7-A A +A
Thursday, November 1, 2012
THE Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB) 7 has declared the operation of a private garbage dumpsite in Barangay Umapad, Mandaue City as illegal for allegedly violating the law on solid waste management.
EMB 7 Director Fernando Quililan also called on Mayor Jonas Cortes to enforce Republic Act (RA) 9003, or The Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 against dumpsite owner Edmund Sanchez.
The EMB’s declaration was based on the findings of Engr. Amancio Dongcoy, Regional Solid Waste Management coordinator, who conducted an investigation last Oct. 23.
Lawyer Michael del Valle Mahusay, public relations officer of the Mandaue Anti-Graft Involvement Council Foundation Inc., filed a complaint before the Office of Director Isabelo Montejo of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 last Oct. 17, which was used as the basis in the investigation.
In his complaint, Mahusay said that the Mandaue City Government closed the public dumpsite in Umapad in compliance with the law.
“As a result, garbage disposal has been devolved to the barangays, many of which have come up with MRFs (material recovery facilities), while at the same time strictly requiring households to segregate garbage according to biodegradable and non-biodegradable,” he said.
“Little did we know, however, that for almost two years now, a private dumpsite just a few meters ahead of the ‘closed public dumpsite’ in Umapad was opened to accommodate the garbage of industrial companies in Mandaue City,” Mahusay added in his complaint.
Dongcoy, in his report, said that according to the information he got from the guard-on-duty at the site, during the “peak season of delivery” at least 20 trucks, carrying solid wastes, dumped their cargo each day.
The dumpsite was noted to be located beside the Mactan channel. It is “generally devoted for use of fishponds but gradually being reclaimed with the use of regular filling material (limestone) and various types of solid wastes.”
The dumpsite was observed to be abundant with organic wastes, such as coconut wastes and ash, that may have come from biomass-fired boilers and a small component of non-biodegradable waste.
Quililan, in his letter to Mahusay after the investigation, said “it was found out that indeed the above-cited dumpsite existed in violation of the provisions of RA 9003.”
He said the operation of open garbage dumpsites is prohibited under Section 48 of RA 9003, and any first offender, upon conviction, will be made to pay a fine of P500,000 plus an amount not less than five percent, but not more than 10 percent of the net income during the previous year.
Quililan also pointed out that the local government units shall be primarily responsible for the implementation and enforcement of the provisions of the law within their jurisdictions.
Quililan also sent a letter to Sanchez, dated Oct. 25, informing him of the results of the investigation by the agency.
A copy of Dongcoy’s report, letters for Cortes and Mahusay were sent to DENR Secretary Ramon Paje through Undersecretary for Field Operations Demeterio Ignacio Jr. and EMB Director Atty. Juan Miguel Cuna.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 01, 2012.