Random Thoughts

Lim differs with Gatchalian

By Leonardo Micua  

WE wish everybody a Merry Christmas and soon a Happy and Prosperous New Year! 

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As Dagupan City is still mulling whether it will welcome the Waste to Worth technology being offered by Sure Global Philippines Inc. at no cost to the city, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy has renewed his call for the passage of his bill that would convert wastes to energy.

You may not know this, his Senate Bill No. 363 or the Waste-to-Energy Act (WTE Act), Senator Gatchalian aptly described this as a piece of legislation that will encourage the development of new technologies “in the treatment as well as the disposal of solid wastes.”

In a news story written by Ms. Hannah L Torregoza in the December 18, 2019 issue of the Manila Bulletin, it states in part: “WTE refers to the energy recovered from waste, usually the conversion of non-recyclable waste materials into usable heat, electricity or fuel through a variety of processes.”

The senator was quoted in the article as saying: “Meeting our growing demand without sacrificing our environment and draining our natural resources need a delicate balancing act.”

He continued: “With the passage of the WTE bill, the country will be able to maximize the energy we can produce from wastes, be it in the form of electricity, fuel, or gas, and in the process address the waste problem” 

Senator Gatchalian believes that WTE projects would benefit the country in terms of a more secure energy system while addressing the issue of a waste management system.

In batting for the passage of his bill, Gatchalian bared that the yearly waste generation in the country, based on the data of the National Solid Waste Management Commission, is expected to increase from 14.66 million metric tons in 2014 to 16.03 million metric tons in 2020 and up to 20.51 million metric tons in 2030. 

Given the reported view of Mayor Brian Lim that Waste to Worth is not the real solution to the garbage woes in his city, he has virtually closed the door on the best technology available to address the environmental crisis that has long pestered Dagupan.

If it happens, Dagupan will lose its golden opportunity to be put in the world map as the forerunner of this kind of technology in all of Southeast Asia.  

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Ricardo Solis, one of the heirs of the late Humberto Solis, wrote Mayor Lim recently informing him that part of the area occupied by the dumpsite is owned by his father and his siblings and now wants the whole area cleared and also wants compensation from the city government for continuously making their property as a dumpsite for three decades now.  

It can be recalled that during Brian’s father’s reign, Humberto Solis wrote an open letter in The Punch, calling on the mayor to clear his property from mountains of wastes after making it as an extension of the dumpsite. Solis presented a valid land title to prove his family’s ownership of the land partly occupied by the dumpsite.

Could this be one of the reasons why the city hall now plans to haul the garbage out from the dumpsite to another area through a service provider?

I hope the destination of Dagupan wastes will be a sanitary landfill licensed by DENR and not again on somebody else’s property.

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The conviction of the three Ampatuan brothers and 25 others for 40 years in prison and 15 others for lesser jail terms (for being accessories) was surely a front page story in many newspapers around the world, sharing the page with the news about the impeachment of President Trump by U.S. Congress on the same day.

The conviction of the accused by Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes of RTC Quezon City, 10 years after the bizarre murder of 57 persons, at least 32 of these were media workers, however, drew mixed reactions from the public, some hailing it as a triumph of justice, while others lamented why 57 others had to be acquitted.

While we join our fellow media men in hailing the decision even if it came too late in the day, we continue to pray for the repose of the souls of our fellow journalists who met their untimely death in such a barbaric nightmarish fashion, while they were in search of news in line with their calling.        

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