The never ending story about the sanitary landfill in Dumaguete adds another chapter to its rather pitiful storyline.
The City Council has authorized Mayor Felipe Antonio B. Remollo to buy a 3.5 hectare lot owned by the spouses Francisco and Salvacion Divinigracia in Barangay Candau-ay in the amount of P18.7 million to serve as the site for the proposed sanitary landfill.
The lot purchase will allow the city government to finally shut down and rehabilitate the open dump site in the same barangay, which has been ordered closed four times by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources in the years 2010, 2014, 2015 and 2016.
Mayor Remollo is determined to establish the sanitary landfill and decided to negotiate with the Divinigracias upon learning that their lot is within the industrial zone making it an ideal site for the elusive facility that will ultimately provide a long term solution to the problem of managing the city’s garbage estimated to be at 70-80 tons daily.
The proposed site is situated in Barangay Candau-ay but adjacent to Barangay Camanjac, it is also 100 meters from a housing project and 400 meters from Ocoy River. The owner of the property adjacent to the lot will help provide a road-right-of-way.
As part of the mitigating measures, the city will utilize the first 100 square meter as material recovery facility, administrative offices so that the actual landfill will be away from the residential area and body of water. A high concrete fence will also be built enclosing the facility and big gmelina trees will also be grown along with the fence to resemble a tree park. Foul odor will not be present because only the residual waste will be buried inside the facility which will have a thick lining to prevent leachate from contaminating the water table.
No Sanitary Landfill in our Backyard
Councilor Manuel Arbon laments that despite the seriousness of the problem, the not-in-my-backyard attitude of the people is hampering the objective of the city government to finally construct and operate a sanitary landfill in compliance to the law.
It was noted that for almost a year, the administration was scouting for sites in Sibulan, Bacong, Valencia, Dauin, Zamboanguita and Siaton, yet not one of these towns are willing to host and are openly hostile of the proposed sanitary landfill. Therefore, it is necessary for the city to find a lot within its already small territory and was lucky enough to find a property that is big enough to host the sanitary landfill, which is neither classified as agricultural nor residential. Mayor Remollo lauded the City Council for approving the purchase, which would greatly help advance the administration’s project to finally establish a sanitary landfill to properly manage the city’s garbage.
Councilor Bandal hopes that the people will support the project considering that Mayor Remollo was merely inheriting the problem of closing the open dumpsite and the establishment of a sanitary landfill from the previous administrations. In fact, the city has been penalized to pay P 2.5 million for failing to close the dumpsite despite notices way back in 2010 and now the incumbent officials can be sued for their failure to establish a landfill.
Mayor Remollo said that once the lot will be purchased, public works will follow for the construction of the sanitary landfill using the brand new equipment worth P 40 million which will be bought next year.