Las Pinas City Boosts Environment Protection Drive
Environmental issues such as proper waste disposal, garbage segregation and the worst which is the non-biodegradable materials like the plastic bags and Styrofoam that almost cover the streets in markets and clog canals are still far from being resolved in most cities in the Philippines. Although the Philippine government has passed a law on proper garbage segregation using color codes, garbage disposal is still one of the biggest problems in the Philippines especially in urban areas like Metro Manila. People are not yet educated properly on proper waste disposal and only a very few are concerned about what is really happening to Mother Earth. Because of the problems regarding garbage, the natural calamities like flood has become worse and the local government of Las Piñas City is doing all means to help minimize the problem.
In Las Piñas City; there are designated areas for dumping garbage at the scheduled time so that all garbage will be picked at the same time in the scheduled time. This is to avoid garbage from being scattered during day time. There are street sweepers incharge of cleaning the streets in the morning and in the afternoon so streets are cleared and garbage properly gathered and ready for collection before the garbage collectors arrive early in the morning.
Las Piñas is one of the cities in the Philippines that is aware of the environmental problems and is doing something to help save Mother Earth. Even creeks are well cleaned and the sides planted with bamboos and other trees. In fact, the City of Las Piñas has garnered 3 accolades in the past concerning the environment protection drive, one accolade is "Cleanest and Greenest City in Metro Manila". The accolades had been awarded for 3 consecutive years from 1997 to 1999.
On January of 2012, Las Piñas City made another big leap in environment protection drive when it enforced an ordinance banning the use of all plastic bags and Styrofoam in packaging all take away items such as food, groceries and others. City Ordinance No. 1036-11 "An Ordinance Banning the Use and Distributionof Thin Film, Single Use, Carry Out, Plastic Bags and Polystyrene Foam (Styrofoam/Styropor) by Commercial Establishments in the City of Las Piñas and Prescribing Penalties thereof", the said ordinance took effect on January 2, 2012. This ordinance was enforced to minimize garbage especially non-biodegradable materials. It was a nice move to minimize garbage and at the same time avoid clogging of canals especially during rainy days. People are now forced to bring their own green bags when they go to the market and go to grocery stores. The plastic bags are now replaced by paper bags which makes buying goods more environmental friendly. The good thing is, plastic bags are not allowed even in supermarkets. If you are buying a month’s supply of goods, a box is provided instead of the usual plastic bags.
Although many people are complaining because paper bags easily tear and it is sometimes very hard to carry, more people who are concerned and are aware of the growing environmental problems are very happy about the new program.
After 3 months of enforcing the city ordinance, Las Piñas is experiencing a big difference in the environment. Plastic bags and Styrofoam that used to scatter everywhere on the streets are gone.
Imagine how much garbage has been minimized by the said program. If every city will be able to enforce the same program then chances are that a big part of the daily garbage is reduced and it will be a big help in the environment.