CLARK FREEPORT -- A total of P524,408 was spent by accredited waste collectors of recyclable and hazardous waste materials at Clark Freeport.

This was learned recently during the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) 11th Annual Recyclables Collection Event (RCE) held at the CDC parking area.

The RCE was conducted by the CDC’s Environmental Permits Department, in cooperation with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ Environmental Management Bureau led by Regional Director Lormelyn Claudio.

RCE aims to promote proper waste management through recycling or materials recovery. The event was part of CDC’s commemoration in celebration of Philippine Environment Month.

EPD officer-in-charge Roy Magat, Dolomatrix Phils. Inc. spent some P186,972 from the 15,581 pieces of busted lamps collected from various locators and residents of the Freeport during the one-day event.

If not properly disposed, the small amount of mercury content in a broken fluorescent lamp could contaminate an entire olympic-sized swimming pool, he said.

Oriental and Motolite Marketing Corporation, on the other hand, spent a total of P268,927 on the 982 pieces of used lead-acid batteries collected, while Semirecycling, Co. Inc. paid P48,894 for the 5,016 kilograms of used paper, plastics, metals, and other e-wastes;

Positive A Envirotech Specialist spent P10,500 for the collected 2,216 liters of used oil from various motor vehicles, and Inkline Trading paid P9,115 for the empty and used ink cartridges of computer printers during the one-day collection.

Magat said the amount is not substantial but the waste collected from the RCE will be properly disposed or even recycled, helping prevent serious and hazardous environmental impacts.

“Waste oil and ULAB (used lead-acid batteries) can be processed to recover oil and the precious lead metal which are recycled while its residual toxic components are properly treated and disposed of,” Magat stressed.

For her part, Claudio expressed hopes that the RCE will be replicated in other areas, particularly in Metro Clark, to promote and encourage proper waste management with the help of CDC, environment groups and waste collecting firms.

“Proper recycling must be done regularly and should start within our households to reduce the volume of garbage being disposed at the landfill or, unfortunately, elsewhere,” she said.