Nueva Ecija townsfolk protest landfill projectBy Anselmo Roque
Inquirer Central Luzon
CABANATUAN CITY—Saying they do not want their town to be known as the “garbage town of Central and Northern Luzon,” residents of Cuyapo in Nueva Ecija have petitioned their town government to turn down a landfill project.
More than 5,000 residents have signed the signature campaign opposing the
P30-million sanitary landfill project of Central Luzon Environmental Action Network Inc., an affiliate of International Solid Waste and Integrated Management Services and San Mateo Sanitary Landfill Services.
Gov. Aurelio Umali, Vice Gov. Gay Padiernos and Cuyapo Mayor Amado Corpus Jr. led the groundbreaking rites for the project in September last year.
“No public consultation [was] made about this project. It will be hazardous to people’s health and environment,” said Fr. Lloyd Nepomuceno, Cuyapo parish priest and leader of the group that launched the signature campaign.
The project critics, belonging to the Crusade Against the Landfill Project in Cuyapo, also include local civic leaders Jesus Mendoza, Florencio Florendo Jr., Efren Poca, Lourdes Falcon and Joselito Batac.
Nepomuceno said: “We were informed it will be used [to host] the garbage of Nueva Ecija towns and those from the provinces of Pangasinan and Tarlac, and even from as far as Baguio City.”
The proposed 10-hectare landfill, which will rise in Barangay Simimbaan, about
4 kilometers from the town center, is near a residential area, a river, a spring and a hill.
Nepomuceno said the project critics understood that the law requires Cuyapo to build a landfill. But the project is “too large for Cuyapo’s daily garbage that amounts only to 7 to 10 tons,” he said.
Six council members of Simimbaan have withdrawn their signatures to the village resolution supporting the project.
Citing the withdrawal of support, Nepomuceno wrote the Cuyapo government on Jan. 10 to “recall and render without force and effect” the municipal resolution that allows the landfill project to proceed.
He said the council had not replied to his letter.