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The environment department’s Environmental Management Bureau in Central Visayas (EMB-7) said on Monday, January 25, that it simultaneously served cease-and-desist orders against two municipalities in the region due to their continued operation of open dumpsites.
Open dumpsites are prohibited under Republic Act No. 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000. According to the EMB-7, “sanitary landfills remain the primary long-term method of solid waste disposal” allowed under the said law.
According to the municipal government of Carmen, residents had already sent formal complaints in the past about the landfill, asking local officials to do something about it.
“Gihold ni mayor ang permits sa site and gipatransfer to ang basura sa laing area. Gitransfer ata sa Barangay Triumfo,” the municipal government said.
(Mayor held the permits to the site and had the trash transferred to a different area. It probably had been transferred to Barangay Triumfo.)
In March 2018, EMB-7 had already issued a cease-and-desist order against the municipality of Carmen, advising the local government unit to immediately conduct rehabilitation of the area near the Luyang River. Another letter was sent in March 2020 reiterating the closure of the dumpsite.
Before the actual closure of the dumpsite in Carmen, officials of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Central Visayas had a meeting with the municipal mayor, Carlo Villamor, to discuss the contents of the cease-and-desist order, as well as the current status of solid waste management in Carmen.
The entrance gate of the Luyang dumpsite was padlocked after the meeting.
Rappler tried to reach the municipal mayor for more details but we have yet to receive a reply as of this posting.
Meanwhile, as early as March 2020, the municipality of Guindulman in Bohol already received a semi-annual compliance report directing it to immediately cease and desist from operating its dumpsite.
“On April 1, 2020, follow-up inspection was conducted by EMB-7 and it was found out that the municipality continued to operate its dumpsite and no closure and rehabilitation undertakings has been conducted despite the CDO issued by the office,” the EMB-7 said. – Rappler.com