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DENR orders temporary closure of Baguio dumpsite

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) announced on Saturday, June 29, that it has ordered the closure of the Irisan open dumpsite in Baguio City.

The DENR said in a statement that the manner of operation of the dumpsite violates Republic Act No. 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.

The temporary closure of the dumpsite followed a surprise inspection of DENR officials led by Undersecretary for Solid Waste and LGU Concerns Benny Antiporda on Wednesday, June 26.

"Immediately after the surprise inspection, Antiporda ordered the EMB regional office in the Cordillera Administrative Region to issue a cease and desist order to the Baguio City government pending its explanation on its failure to comply with the writ of kalikasan and presentation of a sound rehabilitation plan," the DENR said.

National Solid Waste Management Commission had ordered Irisan closed in 2012.  Open dumpsites are prohibited under RA 9003.

The area was supposed to be turned into an eco-park with the DENR, through its Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), assigned to monitor the rehabilitation.

Antiporda ordered the EMB regional office in the Cordillera Administrative Region to issue a cease and desist order to the Baguio City government pending its explanation on its failure to comply with the previous order.

He also told the local government to find alternative garbage facilities.

DENR officials were in Baguio as the city is lined up for rehabilitation after Boracay and Manila Bay.

The Baguio City government had earlier imposed an anti-plastics ban to help ease its garbage volume. – Rappler.com