By Gerald O. Enguero
Naga City Mayor John G. Bongat last Monday launched at city hall here the citywide integrated solid waste management program, to be known as “Happy Go Linig” before representatives of the different barangays, the private sector, and other stakeholders.
While consultations with concerned representatives and city residents are still needed to fine tune the program, “Happy Go Linig” is aimed at establishing a more comprehensive urban cleaning and greening program to better promote a healthy population living comfortably in the city popularly known as “Maogmang Naga.”
Bongat said the program seeks to enjoin communities and public schools to focus on prevention, recycling, and management of solid waste in ways that most effectively protect human health and environment.
He said a committee should be created for the purpose, with him as chairman, the solid waste management officer as vice-chairman and presiding officer and other concerned city officials, and representatives of the private sector and private organizations as members. The committee so created will formulate strategies to gain the support of the public, barangay officials, and private groups and henceforth issue specific rules and guidelines for the search for model/cleanest barangay/s/community (ies).
Bongat disclosed that the program will likewise encourage a waste banking system that will spearhead the recovery of plastics and other related residuals in the barangays and campuses.
One idea, he revealed, is to exchange recovered plastic residuals with a kilo of rice or school supplies equivalent to more or less P25 per kilo as redemption cost.
BUSINESS enterprises are joining the City Government of Naga in another environmental campaign that aims to rid the streets and other areas in the city of plastics and other residual waste.
The ‘Happy Go Linig’ is a support project of the KKDK program of the administration of Mayor John G. Bongat which encourages the Nagueño to develop the culture of cleanliness (Kalinigan), peace (Katoninongan), and order (Disiplina).
The project is expected to work effectively along with the city government’s other initiatives against wastes like the garbage segregation scheme, segregated garbage collection, and the Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) program in the barangays.
Other than the support from the business sector, the Solid Waste Management Office will also seek the active participation and cooperation of the schools, churches, and barangay officials in the implementation of the Happy Go Linig project.
The project, which will be undertaken by way of ridding the streets of plastics and other residual waste including cigarette butts and Styrofoam that clog drainage system, will be launched in the second week of July, this year.
Engr. Joel Martin, SWMO chief, said the city government is mulling over the idea of “buying the waste from public elementary and secondary schools with rice or school supplies” if only to ensure that the project’s objective will be met.
He said barangay halls will serve as redemption centers where students can receive rice or school supplies in exchange for their collected Styrofoam, cigarette butts, multi-layered plastics, and old tarpaulins.
Martin said they are now holding negotiations with the owners of a cement plant in Albay where the city government is planning to transport the waste plastics as fire material. He said plastics carry a high heating value than firewood.