Villar calls on LGUs to help minimize waste in Manila Bay as rainy season begins

Published July 20, 2019, 12:30 PM

by Dr. Eduardo Gonzales

By Vanne Terrazola  

Senator Cynthia Villar on Saturday called on local government units (LGUs) to do their mandate in minimizing wastes in the Manila Bay area, especially as rainy season has already started.

Sen. Cynthia Villar (Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)
Sen. Cynthia Villar
(Senate of the Philippines / MANILA BULLETIN)

“We should really ask the local government to implement the solid waste management law. That’s the only way to stop the garbage from coming to the Manila Bay,” Villar said in an interview at the sidelines of a Manila Bay clean-up drive in Las Piñas City.

Villar, was referring to the Republic Act 9003, or the Ecological Solid Waste Management of 2002, which sought to address the garbage problem in  the country.

Section 10 of the law states that LGUs are “primarily responsible for the implementation and enforcement of the provisions of this Act.”

It particularly tasks barangays to lead the segregation and collection of solid wastes, specifically for biodegradable, compostable and reusable wastes, while municipal or city governments shall be responsible for the collection of non-recyclable materials and special wastes.

Aside from LGUs, Villar also pointed out the responsibility of water concessionaires under Republic Act 9275 to maintain sewerage systems and prevent wastewater from going to the Manila Bay.

“Because the Manila Bay might be clean in appearance, but if all the wastewater goes there then it is still not clean. In quality, it is dirty,” she said in a mix of English and Filipino.

“We have to ask Maynilad and Manila Water to improve their waste water recycling facility so that wastewater will not go to Manila Bay,” she added.

Villar also cited the need for government to allocate additional funding for “those without toilets here in the NCR.”

The chair of the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources earlier filed a bill seeking to amend RA 9003 and prohibit the manufacture and use of single-use plastics.

Villar said her bill would also require the manufacturing and packaging industry to create a program to retrieve their plastic wastes.