Amid a report that the Philippines is a top plastic emitter, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources on Tuesday claimed it has long been undertaking preventive measures and rehabilitation efforts in different river systems, including Pasig River.
Undersecretary for Solid Waste Management and Local Government Units Concerns Benny Antiporda said “again, even prior to the publication of the said study, the DENR has already launched various efforts on environmental protection and conservation under Secretary Roy Cimatu’s leadership.”
The Ocean Cleanup-led study, which was published in the international journal Science Advances, has named rivers in the Philippines as among the top 10 sources of ocean plastic pollution.
Pasig River has been identified as the top plastic emitter.
According to Antiporda, the study, which used a probabilistic approach and was based on secondary studies, did not reflect the actual condition of the rivers.
With strong-willed leadership and efforts to mitigate pollution under the present administration, the study would show a different result, he stressed.
The solid waste management that included plastic wastes is being addressed in the tributaries to the ocean not only through various mitigation strategies, technologies, law enforcement but also in manpower, he said.
He added the agency has continued to support local government units in putting up their materials recovery facilities.
At least 11,546 material recovery facilities have been built, serving 14,450 barangays nationwide, while 335 illegal dumps were closed.