29 September 2015

Toxics Watchdog Gives QC Council Two Thumbs Up for Passage of Two Environmental and Health Measures


The EcoWaste Coalition, an environmental and health watchdog group, lauded the Quezon City Council for adopting two well-timed measures that will protect the public from hazardous products and wastes.

"We give the Quezon City Council two thumbs up for taking proactive  to prevent oxalic acid poisoning injuries and deaths, as well as prevent foreign garbage disposal in Payatas such as those that were illegally shipped to our ports from Canada," said Thony Dizon, Coordinator, EcoWaste Coalition's Project Protect.

On Monday, the Council approved on third and final reading City Ordinance 19CC-496 "prohibiting the sale of oxalic powder in all sari-sari stores and other establishments located within the territorial jurisdiction of Quezon City.”

Oxalic acid, a poisonous bleaching and cleaning agent sold in unlabeled repacked sachets, has been linked to the death of milk tea shop owner William Abrigo and customer Suzaine Dagohoy last April, as well as the death of Jose Maria and Juliet Escano last July.

Introduced by Councilor Dorothy Delarmente and co-introduced by 25 councilors, the ordinance sets a fine of P5,000 or imprisonment not exceeding 3 months to violators, as well as the cancellation of business permit if the violator is a business entity registered with the government of Quezon City.

The Council also confirmed on third and final reading Resolution 19CC-1131 "expressing strong disapproval against any plan to dispose of foreign waste at the Payatas landfill in QC."

The resolution, also introduced by Delarmente and co-introduced by 26 councilors, was a preemptive response to thwart the possible disposal of the illegal hazardous garbage shipments from Canada.

"The Quezon City Council finds the dumping of foreign waste into our country as  totally inexcusable and unacceptable and demands that such unethical and unlawful act be brought to a halt," the resolution stated.

The EcoWaste Coalition, which actively took part in related public hearings convened by the QC Council Committees on Environment and Health, had earlier commended the enactment of City Ordinance 19CC-311.

The said ordinance prohibits the sale of silver jewelry cleaners containing cyanide and other toxic substances in all silver jewelry shops, street and sidewalk vendors and other retailers operating within Quezon City.

-end-

Reference:

http://quezoncitycouncil.ph/agenda.php (see agenda for the 74th regular session on September 28, 2015)

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