GERMAN bank KfW has offered P2-million assistance for the City Government to procure a consultancy firm that will conduct feasibility study on detailed engineering design for a sanitary landfill project at Calajunan dumpsite.

Engr. Helen Sotomil of the Iloilo City Solid Waste Management Board (ICSWMB) bared this upon presenting the board's terminal report for 2004-2010 during the incumbency of Congressman Jerry Treñas.

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Sotomil said the report will be submitted to new city Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog upon reconvening the waste board new membership for the period of 2010 to 2013.

The waste board has prepared a 10-year SWM Plan from 2003 to 2013 that will become the basis of projects and programs on solid waste management in the city's 180 barangays.

Similarly, the City Government and Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Environment Management Bureau regional office inked a memorandum of understanding calling for the implementation of a technical support project for solid waste management intended for local government unit. It was provided by the German Technical Cooperation consultancy company (GTZ-AHT).

Sotomil said GTZ also granted assistance for capability building of 16 riverbank barangays in the city near the government's Iloilo flood control project.

The city dumpsite covers more than 23 hectares, and three hectares of the old dumpsite was closed and already covered with soil. This will be developed into an ecological park.

Some 10 hectares are being developed into an initial one cell sanitary landfill.

Other SWMB accomplishments are an advocacy campaign in all barangays and advocacy drive through the EcoSavers Club in three public high schools and seven elementary schools.

The board also organized an enforcement team and trained several enforcement volunteers in the barangays to implement the solid waste provisions of Republic Act 9003.

A waste pickers association was organized to take off the scavengers at the Calajunan dumpsite and offer them livelihood. Some of the scavengers were also absorbed as job hire employees and were utilized as composting team and gardeners. They were also utilized in baling and sorting of plastic garbage shipped to the Holcim cement plant in Misamis Oriental. (Lydia C. Pendon)