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Reiteration on solid waste management

Last night, two young boys knocked at our front gate in our residence and with curiosity in my mind, I went out to them. To my surprise they were pushing a cart similar to that of banana vendors in public markets. In it were plastic bags that appeared to be garbage.

When asked, the two kids told me that they were collecting garbage for a fee in the whole neighborhood. I gave them a follow up question if they were ordered by the barangay council or if they are accredited at least by our barangay officials. They replied saying they are doing it so they can earn even for a few coins so they will have something to buy for snacks at their school the next day.

I then asked the tots how much they charge for their efforts and where they do dump what they collect for the night. They retorted and said that they charge ten pesos for every bag and that they dump the same at a garbage bin near the municipal hall.

I was deeply moved by them, not just in their efforts to earn but also to their way of earning by collecting not just garbage but also for some cash for their next day schooling. However, it made me ponder too as to why our barangay government (often called barangay by local folks) can’t replicate the same and pick up household garbage in our community. If the two kids can collect trash from residences, I’m sure some people working in the barangay can do the same.

Solid waste disposal is again at the limelight as Governor Lilia “Nanay” Pineda has reiterated to municipalities and barangays the adherence to Republic Act 9003 or the Solid Waste Management Act of 2000. As per provision of the law, mayors and punong barangays all over the country are primarily responsible for its strict implementation.

It can be recalled that Governor Pineda has distributed to every municipalities in the Pampanga brand new garbage trucks to be used in the proper dumping of solid wastes in line with the capitol’s thrust on the proper solid waste management.

The governor has likewise stressed the importance of garbage segregation among municipalities, barangays and households. The segregation of waste helps a lot in the proper disposal of garbage as it minimize the volume of wastes that really needs to be disposed apart from those that can be recycled.

We have to hear again the words biodegradable and the non-biodegradable wastes. The former, popularly known as “nabubulok” are those that rot and fertilize the soil where they are dumped, thus help the environment by way of fertilizing the earth. The non-biodegradable wastes meanwhile are those “di-nabubulok”. The latter can be recycled or still be made of use for other purposes such as juice drink cartons that can be made into bags or pouches.

One of the factors that aggravate the solid waste problems in our country is the volume of trash that we generate from day to day. One of the solutions on the other hand lies in minimizing the volume. We can tremendously minimize the amount of garbage through proper segregation. Further, we can have some collateral gain from the proper disposal of garbage with the recyclables as they can be sold and be converted into cash.

The biodegradables meanwhile can be used, like I mentioned, as organic fertilizers. Fertilizing earth may result into good yield of vegetables and other high-value crops for our backyards and even farms. If garbage would be put into good use, then we can be able to significantly solve a great part of our woes on waste management.

Minimizing the volume of garbage is minimizing the problem. I hope municipal mayors (especially the newly-elected ones) can start their term of offices right with the advocacy on proper solid waste management.

For other opinions, comments, suggestions or adverse reactions, you may reach iWrite at 0919-5107665. ●

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