THE Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) has expressed interest in lending to support sanitary landfill projects at local government level, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said in a statement over the weekend.
The DENR said the DBP will serve as its “partner” in addressing the garbage disposal problem, in the wake of a Friday virtual meeting between the DENR and DBP officials.
During the meeting, DENR Undersecretary for Solid Waste Management and Local Government Units Concerns Benny D. Antiporda proposed a private-public partnership (PPP) approach in the building of sanitary landfills (SLFs) nationwide.
The Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 defines a sanitary landfill as a waste disposal site in which significant environmental impacts are controlled.
“The establishment of 300 SLFs used to be an impossible dream. But with DBP, I know it will not be impossible,” Antiporda was quoted as saying.
DBP Lending Program Management Group Head Paul D. Lazaro said that the DBP is open to considering a PPP arrangement since it has the capacity to “finance the local government and private sectors.”
“We are looking forward to a collaboration with the DENR because… DBP is very much involved in the different projects of the DENR,” he said in a statement.
DBP Program Development and Management Department Head Rustico Noli D. Cruz said the bank could provide financing solutions to SLF operators through its Green Financing Program (GFP).
Cruz was quoted as saying that the GFP was the bank’s umbrella program for climate change-related and environmental projects, including solid and hazardous waste management.
Separately, the DENR announced the establishment of the Coalition on Solid Waste Management Providers, which was created to accelerate partnerships with the department and identify areas where SLFs can be built.
“Now that the country’s solid waste management service providers are organized as a coalition, they can strengthen their partnership for a better solid waste management in the country,” Mr. Antiporda said.
Nine members have been elected to the executive committee of the coalition, according to the DENR.
Last month, DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu ordered Mr. Antiporda and all regional offices to close all open dumpsites in their respective areas by the end of March.
The 2000 solid waste law defines an open dumpsite as one in which solid waste is thrown without planning and consideration for environmental and health standards. They are illegal to establish or operate. — Angelica Y. Yang