South Korean gov’t begins probe on trash shipped to PH

admin   •   February 8, 2019   •   1588

Waste materials from South Korea

MANILA, Philippines — The South Korean government has begun an investigation into the tons of garbage that were sent to the Philippines from South Korea in July 2018.

The 51 containers containing 1,200 tons of waste materials are now back in South Korea after reaching Pyeongtaek Port on Sunday.

The smuggled garbage entered the country illegally through Cagayan de Oro Port in Mindanao where it was declared to contain wood, mirrors, plastics and electronic waste.

There are still 5,100 tons of waste in Mindanao that are set to be shipped back to South Korea.

The Han River Basin Environmental Office said that part of the investigation’s aim is to prevent a repetition of the incident. — UNTV News & Rescue

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PH returns third batch of waste from South Korea

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 17, 2020

The Philippines is set to return 50 containers of trash from the Mindanao International Container Terminal (MICT) back to South Korea within the month.

According to the Bureau of Customs (BOC), over 6,000 tons of waste from South Korea were shipped into the Philippines in 2018. They were declared plastic waste but was reported to contain mixed non-biodegradable waste.

The first shipment of re-exportation was successfully done in January 13, 2019 which included 51 containers.

“Additional batches shall be re-exported on February 16 and February 23 which shall bring the total re-exported wastes to 201 containers and shall finally rid the country of the illegally imported wastes,” MICT Port Collector John Simon said in a statement.

Simon said that once the total of 6,500 tons of trash is returned, the Philippines will still ask South Korea to pay for damages after violating the Basel Convention.

Simon also stressed that the Bureau shall remain firm in its commitment of protecting the country’s borders from the entry of any illegal shipments including wastes that are harmful to the environment.—AAC (with reports from Aiko Miguel)

40 tons of plastic removed from the Pacific Ocean

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 2, 2019

Sausalito, CA—A non-profit organization has removed around 40 tons of plastic, including fishing nets, from the Pacific Ocean.

The Ocean Voyages Institute has completed a 25-day clean up which is one of the largest ocean clean-up mission in the world. The clean-up has covered the North Pacific Subtropical Convergence Zone, or more commonly known as the Pacific Gyre.

WATCH: Saving Seahorses: 2 tonnes of abandoned fishing nets removed from Greek seabed

Several experts said the Northern Pacific Gyre is part of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch where huge amounts of waste are collected.

The organization’s prime target is recovering fishing gears since it poses more threat to marine life.

“Often weighing tons, these massive nets of nylon or polypropylene drift for decades, amassing plastic debris, ensnaring wildlife, and even entangling ships,” according to their statement.

READ: Trash found littering ocean floor in deepest-ever sub dive

Mary Crowley, founder and executive director of OV Institute said urgent action is needed to curtail the manufacture of throwaway plastics and prevent plastic trash from entering the oceans.

“It is very disturbing to be sailing through what was only decades ago a pristine ocean wilderness and find it filled with our all-too-familiar garbage,” she said.

Ocean Voyages Institute said an estimated 600,000 tons of this abandoned gear ends up in the oceans every year.

The United Nations reported some 380,000 marine mammals are killed every year by either ingesting or being caught in it.—AAC

Bulacan LGU begins trash to school supplies program

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 4, 2019

The Municipal Agriculture office of the Baliwag, Bulacan local government has begun its program to give away school supplies in exchange for trash.

They launched the project in 2017 where they exchange grocery items for every collected trash.

According to Information, Education and Communication Campaign Program Municipal Environment and Natural Resource Office (MENRO) Ronald Cruz all waste in schools like plastic cups and sachets are exchanged for school supplies like notebooks and pens.

“Mayroon po tayong beneficiary na nabigyan dito sa bayan ng Baliwag regarding po sa eskwelahan, kung ano po iyong nagiging basura sa eskwelahan tulad ng plastic cup iyong mga sachet ng chichiria o mga snack iyon po pinapalit po naming iyon, (We already have school beneficiaries here in Baliwag. They exchange plastic cups, plastic chips or snacks [school supplies]” he said.

In Barangay Makinabang a plastic bottle is equal to a pack of school supplies.

Palit Basura Director Alberto Casanas said this program helps the residents ease their expenses especially during opening of classes.

“Nababawasan at nagagamit sa ibang proyekto ng ating munisipyo, ([waste] is reduced and used in our municipal projects)” he said.

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