SAN SIMON The Sangguniang Bayan (SB) here has approved an ordinance requiring smelting plants in town to upgrade their air pollution control devices (APCDs).
SB Ordinance No. ‘23-003, Strengthening the Modernization of Smelting Metal Scrap in San Simon was unanimously approved by the local council on Tuesday, February 1.
Under the said measure, smelting plants must rehabilitate and improve their APCDs to make it suitable and appropriate based on the type, size and scale of production activities.
The industrial plants are also required to create a contingency plan in case the APCD malfunction.
Vice Mayor Romanoel “Dading” Santos said the provision aims to ensure that smelting plants operate only when their APCDs are fully functional.
“Kapag sinisita kasi sila na mausok, ang sasabihin nila sira ang mga devices nila kaya ito ang iniiwasan natin,” he said.
If APCDs are non-operational, the ordinance requires them to temporarily shut down until repair is done.
Smelting plants must also seal the roof of the structure where the production activities take place to prevent the passage of dust and fumes during the malfunction of pollution device control.
The installation of Continuous Emission Monitoring System and CCTVs near the APDCs is also required.
These will be monitored by the local government to ensure the steel plants’ compliance to the ordinance.
The smelting plants are given two years to comply with the ordinance and rehabilitate their APCDs.
Compliant factories will be given discount on business and real property taxes, and other regulatory fees for three years.
Santos said the local council approved the ordinance to finally resolve the long standing air pollution problem in their town.
“Marami na ang naapektuhan na mga kababayan namin kaya kailangan na talaga kumilos. Umaasa naman kami na makikipagtulungan ang mga planta natin dito,” he said.
As of Thursday, the ordinance has been forwarded to and is awaiting the approval of Mayor Abundio “JP” Punsalan before its implementation.
San Simon is host to five smelting plants namely Wan Chiong Steel Corporation, Melters Steel Corporation, SKK Steel Corporation, Real Steel Corporation and Altima Empire Steel Corporation — all located along the Quezon Road.