By: Marites Toledo
ECOGROUPS on Monday slammed Environment Sec. Regina Lopez for her continued inaction to prevent the practice of burn waste-to-energy (WtE).
Ochie Tolentino, Zero Waste Campaigner of EcoWaste Coalition, said “We urge Secretary Lopez to take the lead in promoting ecological and sustainable solutions to the country’s garbage woes. We already have cities, municipalities and barangays that are successfully implementing safe, proven and low-cost ecological management of municipal solid waste and their experiences can be replicated across the country.”
Lopez has not acted on the issue since ecogroups elevated it to her last September.
Tolentino said Lopez continued inaction will undermine the government’s effort to curb environmental degradation and pursue a low-carbon development path.
“Once we allow burn WtE technologies, our citizens will be locked in to years of dirty, toxic, and costly solid waste management systems. Burn WtE facilities emit greenhouse gases and toxic fly ash and bottom ash. Allowing these facilities will sabotage our country’s efforts to clean our air and implement the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act,” Tolentino said.
The groups, which are part of the Stop Waste-to-Energy Alliance (SWtEA), were composed of various environmental watchdog groups and advocates, such as Bangon Kalikasan Movement, Consumer Rights for Safe Food, EcoWaste Coalition, Greenpeace Southeast Asia, Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives, Health Care Without Harm, Mother Earth Foundation, Philippine Movement for Climate Justice, and Piglas ng Kababaihan.
These groups raised the issue on the supposed inaction by DENR on the petition sent by various environmental networks on September 1, 2016.