MACHINES THAT will convert trash into construction materials and other products are now being set up at Dumaguete’s main materials recovery facility, bringing the local government a step closer to its goal of becoming a “zero waste” city.

Mayor Felipe Antonio B. Remollo inspected last week the installation of machines and equipment for the pyrolysis gasification process that will produce pavers, hollow blocks and other construction materials out of waste, according to a press release from the city government.

The facility’s output will be used for local infrastructure projects and road maintenance. The recovery facility will also have machines for processing biodegradable wastes into organic fertilizers.

Mr. Remollo said achieving a “Zero Waste Dumaguete” is possible through these investments “coupled with the people’s cooperation in reducing consumption, practicing waste segregation and recycling.”

The city recently closed down its 35-year-old dumpsite as the recovery facility was opened. A sanitary landfill is also planned for construction in the area.

About P100 million has been allocated for the past three years by the city government for the waste management plan, including the closure and rehabilitation of the dumpsite, and the purchase of land and setting up the recovery and recycling facility.

Dumaguete, the capital of Negros Oriental province, covers an area of 3,362 hectares with a population of 134,103 based on the 2020 census. The coastal city is home to Siliman University, best known for its programs on marine sciences. — MSJ