ENVIRONMENTAL GROUPS have called for a stricter implementation of waste management laws in Davao City as the local government is poised to undertake a waste-to-energy (WTE) project with the sanitary landfill about to reach full capacity. Non-government organization Interface Development Interventions (IDIS) and Ecoteneo, the Ateneo de Davao University’s ecology advocacy, have expressed opposition to the WTE and cited alternative solutions to the city’s growing waste management problem. Kim Fabular, program officer of Ecoteneo, said what actually goes into the landfill are more biodegradable wastes because of a poor segregation practices. “The more problematic issue… hindi po tayo nag (We do not) segregate… there is a clear mismanagement in our wastes because it is not segregated,” she said at the Kapehan sa Davao media forum. Ruel Kenneth A. Felices of IDIS cited data from the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) indicating that single-use plastics and other residual wastes make up 29% of the city’s garbage. Mr. Felices also said that only five out of the 182 barangays have complied with the ordinance requiring the establishment of a material recovery facility in every community. He said while there are households, private establishments, and educational institutions implementing their own waste management systems, the city government needs to improve its program. “If solid waste management is enforced, the city won’t be needing the WTE,” he said. — Maya M. Padillo