The National Solid Waste Management Commission (NSWMC) has approved the 10-year solid waste management (SWM) plans of 21 local government units (LGUs) on July 8.

Of the 21 approved plans, four are in Ilocos Norte, four in Misamis Occidental, two in Zambales, two in Bohol, two in Lanao del Norte, and one each in Nueva Ecija, Quezon province, Negros Oriental, Misamis Oriental, Surigao del Sur, Benguet, and Mountain Province.

To date, the NSWMC reported a total of 1,103 approved SWM plans, which is already 64 percent of its target nationwide.

"These SWM plans shall be the foundation for the effective solid waste management of cities and municipalities through the leadership of their local executives," said Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary and NSWMC Chair Roy A. Cimatu.

"These newly-approved plans are commitments of the NSWMC to capacitate LGUs.  The commission shall continue to support them by approving fully compliant and sound SWM plans and overseeing the implementation of these plans," he added.

DENR Undersecretary for Solid Waste Management and LGUs Concerns and NSWMC Alternate Chair Benny D. Antiporda said the commission is optimistic that it will be able to reach its total target of 1,716 SWM plans soon.

"Upcoming deliberations and reviews of other SWM plans of LGUs that are not yet approved will continue in the coming months," Antiporda assured.  “We will not waver until all LGUs in the country effectively practice the proper reuse, collection, processing, and disposal of wastes in their respective jurisdictions.”

The DENR is investigating LGUs who have not yet submitted their 10-year SWM plan and legal actions will be taken against them by the end of third quarter 2021.

Under Republic Act (RA) 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, LGUs, through their local solid waste management boards, are tasked to formulate their respective 10-year SWM plans consistent with the National Solid Waste Management Framework of the NSWMC.

The SWM plans include strategies on waste diversion, waste collection efficiency or coverage, collection and disposal of residual waste, operation and maintenance of SWM equipment and facility.

To complement the SWM strategies, specific actions incorporated in the recently approved plans include the creation of ordinances and policies, the establishment of materials recovery facility, sanitary landfill (SLF), COVID-19 waste management plan, designation of a municipal environment and natural resources offices, and the implementation of information, education, and communication campaign.

The NSWMC is also currently working on the implementation of the total solid waste management solution for SLFs, which will integrate the appropriate technology and strategy in the sorting, recovery, processing, and disposal of different kinds of solid wastes to ensure its optimum use, and eventually reduce the quantity of wastes and extend the lifespan of the landfill. ###