Think recycling, communities toldPhilippine Daily Inquirer
The recycling of plastic and other solid waste should be strongly considered as a sustainable way of keeping trash out of the waste stream and as a more productive option to an outright ban on plastic.
Speaking at the 1st Innovation Fair of SPIK (Samahan sa Pilipinas ng Industriyang Kimika) last week, Crispian Lao, a private sector representative in the National Solid Waste Management Commission, said recycling should be practiced by communities, yet there seemed to be little public awareness of it or government interest in promoting it.
He said proper solid waste segregation, recovery and recycling were mandated under Republic Act No. 9003, the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.
Yet, more than 10 years after it was passed, the mechanisms and incentives of the recycling program have yet to be properly enforced, hence, the act’s objectives have remained unrealized, Lao said.
‘‘Recycling of solid waste, whether plastic or paper, is climate smart because when you take it out of the waste stream it could still be turned into new products,” he explained.
‘‘Why leave plastic in the waste stream when there are so many applications for plastic?” he said, among them, consumer items like basins, buckets, tables and chairs. Plastic can also be converted to fuel or, mixed with cement, into hollow blocks. Asphalt mixed with plastic is said to make for a stronger road pavement.
‘‘There are so many possibilities,” said Lao, former president of the Philippine Plastic Industry Association.