The barangay officials, selected residents, and members of various organizations and associations from seven barangays in Tanauan, Batangas were oriented on laws pertaining to solid waste and wastewater management through the Daluynungan or “Flow of Knowledge” activities of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-Manila Bay Site Coordinating Management Office (MBSCMO)-4.
The said barangays include Brgys. Ulango, Balele, Janopol Oriental, Santor, Darasa, Poblacion V, and Pantay Bata. In view of the pandemic, the information drive was conducted through video conference with a mix of face-to-face sessions with a limited number of participants at the respective barangay halls and covered courts.
The webinar focused on the discussion of the salient provisions of the Republic Act Nos. 9003 and 9275 otherwise known as the “Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000” and “Clean Water Act of 2004”, respectively.
It was emphasized in the webinar that the entire city of Tanauan is connected to the Manila Bay through its water system, particularly, the San Juan River. Results of the water quality monitoring conducted by the Environmental Management Bureau Calabarzon along the upstream (Brgy. San Lucas, Lipa City), midstream (Brgy. Darasa, Tanauan City), and downstream (First Philippine Industrial Park, Sto. Tomas City) of San Juan River last March 2021 showed that the fecal coliform count in the said river increased compared to that of the monitoring conducted in January 2021 and February 2021.
Queenie Borero, Project Support Staff of DENR-MBSCMO4, stressed that the LGUs should share the responsibility in the management and improvement of water quality within their territorial jurisdiction in accordance with Section 20 of the Clean Water Act. She added that each LGU, through the passage of an ordinance, should appropriate the necessary land for the construction of sewage and/or septage treatment facilities in accordance with the Local Government Code.
Borero explained that proper sewage and septage systems allow for the treatment of wastewater before it flows into the river. “Proper maintenance of sewage systems prevents waterborne diseases from being spread. It is also vital for protecting water resources,” she said.
Christian Libang, Project Support Staff of DENR -MBSCMO4, shared that the entire city of Tanauan has a daily waste generation of P167,199.42 kilograms, per data from Tanauan City Environment and Natural Resources Office. Thus, he emphasized to the barangay government units the importance of applying the “4Rs” in waste management such as Refuse (the use of single-use plastics), Reduce (the amount of unnecessary packaging), Reuse, and Recycle to lessen the waste going to the sanitary landfills. He explained further the system in the collection and disposal of different kinds of waste. MBSCMO4 also provided a brief training on composting and vertical gardening.
DENR-MBSCMO4 Deputy Coordinator Cynthia Rozaldo expressed her gratitude to the Local Government and hopes that the strengthened partnership will be beneficial to achieve their goal of having a cleaner, healthier and safer environment for all. DENR-MBSCMO4 will hold Daluynungan activities in four more barangays in the coming months.
The regional department encourages the public to report those who are improperly disposing solid waste and wastewater to the respective Municipal/City Environment and Natural Resources Office, or to the Provincial Environmental Monitoring Units (PEMU) of the Environmental Management Bureau through the following numbers and email addresses: