“Revoke Obando Landfill ECC!” reverberates outside the environment department gate as the environmental compliance certificate (ECC) of the proposed landfill in Bulacan undergoes a review inside.
Carrying a fishing boat, fishing net and placards, bearing calls to revoke the ECC of the proposed landfill to be sited in a fishing village in Obando, Bulacan, more than 200 individuals from the said town and members of the EcoWaste Coalition marched to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Quezon City this morning to press Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje to dump the landfill project.
The groups immediately set up a tableau and offered prayers to dramatize their opposition against the landfill upon reaching the DENR.
They argue that under Republic Act 9003, the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act, the landfill violates the minimum considerations for Siting and Designing Sanitary Landfills, which requires that “the site must be chosen with regard for the sensitivities of the community’s residents,” and that "the landfill's operation will not detrimentally affect environmentally sensitive resources”.
"If you put garbage in Salambao, Obando river, it will be like putting garbage in our plates, because this is where our food come from," cried Mercy Dolorito, former Barangay Chairman of Salambao where the 44 hectare landfill is proposed to be set-up.
The groups said they reject the landfill project asserting that it will cause further damage to the fragile ecosystems of the Obando River and Manila Bay, devastate the remaining marine resources, destroy the mangroves and fishing livelihoods, and aggravate the flooding problem of the low-lying municipality.
“It is completely inhuman and un-Godly, immoral and unethical, and even unconstitutional, to turn our rivers and historic town into a poisoned sacrifice zone for garbage coming from Metro Manila and other places,” asserted Ma. Teresa Bondoc of the Concerned Citizens of Obando.
The extreme unpopularity of the project has led to unprecedented citizens’ activism in Obando as can be seen from the conduct of monthly anti-landfill processions and related activities, including the use of the internet to disseminate stories and videos about the struggle and to petition the concerned authorities to junk the landfill project.
Obando Vice-Mayor Danilo de Ocampo stated that "The people have spoken loud and clear in rejecting the landfill project. DENR should heed this call and junk the project’s ECC at once.”
Despite the strong opposition of the people of Obando, the municipal government passed Resolution 07-102 allowing the proponent, Eco Shield Development Corporation, to construct the proposed landfill in the fishing village of Salambao off Manila Bay.
“The landfill project plainly contravenes the Supreme Court mandate to clean-up Manila Bay and restore it to its former condition of vitality. We should make Manila Bay landfill-free,” said Romeo Hidalgo, member of the executive committee and Co-Chair of Dumps and Incineration Task Force of EcoWaste Coalition.
Meanwhile, the groups cried foul at the statement of Regional Director Lormelyn Claudio of DENR- Environmental Management Bureau Region 3, which appeared recently in one broadsheet, claiming Sec Paje “has endorsed [Obando] landfill” even while the project’s ECC is still under review by the DENR. ###
Additional information available at:https://www.change.org/petitions/tell-the-mayor-and-governor-to-stop-the-obando-sanitary-landfill-project?utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=share_petition&utm_term=own_wall