GenSan eyes processing facilities for medical wastes and plastics

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 16 January) — The city government is working on the establishment of processing facilities for medical wastes and plastics recycling at its sanitary landfill complex.

City Councilor Elizabeth Bagonoc, chair of the city council’s committee on environment and climate change, said the two projects are already in the pipeline and awaiting funding from the local government.

With the increasing use of plastics waste recycling has become a major concern for big cities in the Philippines. MindaNews file photo by FROILAN GALLARDO

She said these were not included in the city’s approved budget for this year but City Mayor Ronnel Rivera has committed to fund and implement them.

The proposed projects cost a total of P30 million or P20 million for the medical waste treatment and processing facility and P10 million for the plastics recycling facility, she said.

Bagonoc said the establishment of these facilities were provided for in separate ordinances passed by the city council last year.

She said the plastics recycling facility requires the installation of a machine that will process plastic wastes into other items.

“It will be able to convert plastic wastes into recycled items like planter pots, tables, chairs and other materials,” she said.

Bagonoc said the medical waste treatment and processing facility will utilize the pyroclave system adopted by existing facilities in South Cotabato and Sarangani provinces.

“It will mainly process or burn wastes coming from our hospitals and medical facilities,” she said in an interview over Brigada News TV.

The official said the city’s sanitary landfill currently has no capacity to handle wastes disposed by hospitals and clinics, which could contain some contaminants.

Bagonoc said the law requires hospitals and medical facilities to adopt and implement their own solid waste management programs under the supervision of the Department of Health.

She said hospitals in the city are currently facing difficulty in disposing their wastes due to the lack of available processing and treatment facilities in the area.

Some local hospitals have been delivering their wastes to the treatment facility of the provincial government of South Cotabato in Tantangan town that is equipped with two pyroclave machines, she said.

The city has at eight major hospitals, including one operated by the local government, and several clinics.

Bagonoc said the operationalization of these facilities will generate additional income for the local government through fees from clients and sales of recycled products.

“These are self-liquidating facilities. The city government will eventually recover these investments, generate income and at the same time attend to our problems on solid wastes,” she added. (MindaNews)