Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy Cimatu has ordered all the agency’s Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) regional directors to step up efforts against open dumpsites in their respective areas of jurisdiction, noting that Republic Act 9003 (Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000) prohibits these facilities.
“This is my directive to them: All open dumpsites must be closed by the end of March this year!” he announced Tuesday in a message for RA 9003’s 20th anniversary celebration.
He said a review of RA 9003’s implementing rules and regulations are already underway “to make way for better and bigger sanitary landfills”.
“Open dump shall refer to a disposal area wherein the solid wastes are indiscriminately thrown or disposed of without due planning and consideration for environmental and health standards,” RA 9003 noted.
Upon assuming DENR’s top post, Cimatu prioritized solid waste management as he observed RA 9003 was neither promptly nor fully implemented despite the country’s increasing waste generation.
“We have so much catching up to do,” he said.