LEGAZPI, ALBAY — The city government has been chosen by the Japanese government as a recipient of its PHP9.5-million grant for the establishment of facilities that would further improve its waste management system.
In an interview on Tuesday, Legazpi City health and safety officer, Engineer Neil Careo, said Legazpi has been selected, along with two other cities, due to its effective implementation of its solid waste management program (SWMP).
Careo said they are now fine-tuning all the documentation for the City Plan of Action on Marine Litter (CPAML), which is the major requirement for the implementation of the Japanese program dubbed “Healthy Ocean and Clean Cities Initiative” (HOCCI) facilitated by the United Nations Human Settlement Program (UN-Habitat) Philippines.
He said they will conduct a study regarding marine litter reduction to be submitted to the UN-Habitat.
Careo said the city government will use PHP1 million of the grant to improve the city’s waste management while the remaining PHP8.5 million would be used to buy equipment for minimizing marine waste materials through a “circular economy”.
The City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO), he noted, should strengthen the application of the “reuse, reduce, recycle” (3R) strategy.
“Also, the city government of Legazpi and the UN-Habitat will sign an agreement of cooperation for the implementation of the HOCCI project,” Careo said.
UN-Habitat is the United Nations agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelters for all.
Careo said the HOCCI project will focus on the reduction of marine waste materials particularly the single-use plastics coming from households and other institutions which clog the river channels and destroy the marine resources.
Aside from Legazpi, the cities of Ormoc and Cagayan de Oro were also selected as beneficiaries of the Japanese grant.