MANILA — Senator Francis Tolentino on Wednesday described as “hitting two birds with one stone” his proposed measure to utilize garbage as source of electricity and fuel which could address both waste disposal problem and the shortage of energy supply.
Under his Senate Bill no. 401, entitled “An Act Allowing the Use of Waste to Energy Technology in Electricity, Fuel and Heat Generation, and for Other Purposes” Tolentino cited the problem of improper waste disposal which largely contributes to the country’s environmental problem, coupled with a projection of an energy supply crisis.
He mentioned the study by the Japan International Corporation Agency (JICA), which states that the percentage of local government units that fully followed the sanitary landfill method as mandated by RA No. 9003, did not reach ten percent.
The situation, he said, would worsen as around 80 to 90 percent of the capacity if the constructed sanitary landfills have already been utilized and is projected to be at full capacity within the next five years.
Concurrent with the garbage disposal problem is the forthcoming crisis in the energy field.
This is already manifested in the rotational brownouts being implemented by electric suppliers in some part of the country and the rising cost of power due mainly to the shortage of supply, which os further aggravated by the rising prices of petroleum products.
To address both disposal of solid waste and shortage of energy supply, Tolentino is proposing to fully allow the use of waste to energy technologies.
This is in harmony with the Supreme Court (SC) ruling in the case of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority vs. Jancorn Environmental Corporation where it was ruled that RA 8749 otherwise known as the Clean Air Act, does not absolutely prohibit incineration as a mode if waste disposal, but bans only those which emit poisonous and toxic fumes. (Stacy Ang/PRIB/IAMIGO/CPH)