Environmental groups blast Mike Rama on P4.8 billion incinerator JVA deal

Environmental groups blast Mike Rama on P4.8 billion incinerator JVA deal

By Junex Doronio
September 23, 2022

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CEBU CITY — Claiming that there was a lack of public consultation and its approval was rushed, environmental groups assailed Mayor Mike Rama’s decision to sign a joint venture agreement (JVA) with New Sky Energy that will invest P4.8 billion to put up a waste-to-energy garbage disposal facility.

The environmental groups charged that the decision of Rama, who envisioned transforming the Queen City of the South into like Asia’s Lion City Singapore, will only “hostage the city to a long-term and toxic garbage incinerator contract.”

“Mayor Rama’s approval and signing of a 40-year agreement with a garbage incinerator company undermine citizens’ efforts to minimize and reduce their waste, while locking-in the city to a very long tenure of dirty and expensive waste management system,” Aileen Lucero, national coordinator of EcoWaste Coalition, pointed out.

The EcoWaste Coalition and various organizations said they are preparing to contest the legality of the JVA due to the lack of public consultation and its rushed approval of the City Government.

They claimed that the project will pose hazards to public health and the environment.

Under the JVA, the City is obligated to use the facility and pay a tipping fee higher than the current base fees being paid by the City for using landfills.

“Incinerators disguised as waste-to-energy facilities remain to be deleterious to health as they still emit toxic pollutants such as dioxin, lead, and mercury to the environment. The trade-off will always be unjust and inhumane since the health of citizens living near the proposed incinerator facility will be sacrificed, particularly children, the elderly, and other vulnerable members of the community,” warned Paeng Lopez, program manager of the Health Care Without Harm. (ai/mtvn)

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