As reported earlier by Canadian media, Ottawa has sent “a formal offer” to the government of the Philippines to have the illegal garbage shipments that arrived at the Port of Manila from 2013 to 2014 returned to the Port of Vancouver.
KJ Rosales
Groups welcome Canada’s offer to take back trash
Rhodina Villanueva (The Philippine Star) - May 4, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Environmental groups welcomed Canada’s offer to have its garbage in the Philippines re-exported to the North American country.

As reported earlier by Canadian media, Ottawa has sent “a formal offer” to the government of the Philippines to have the illegal garbage shipments that arrived at the Port of Manila from 2013 to 2014 returned to the Port of Vancouver.

“While we are not aware yet of the terms and conditions, we welcome the offer made by the Canadian government as a very positive development that will hopefully result in the re-export of their garbage on or before the May 15 deadline,” said Aileen Lucero, EcoWaste Coalition national coordinator.

“Our nation’s persistence to get the garbage returned to the ‘state of export’ has raised national as well as global awareness about the responsibility of waste exporting countries to respect the rights of people in developing countries and for them to live up to their obligations as parties to the Basel Convention on the control of transboundary movements of hazardous wastes,” she added.

The Triple Conference of the Parties to the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions is currently in progress in Geneva, Switzerland from April 29 to May 10.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III gave the Bureau of Customs until May 15 to return the garbage to Canada following President Duterte’s stern warning last April 23 against the long delayed repatriation of the illegal trash shipments.

“As this is a matter of public interest, we request the authorities to fully disclose the offer made by Canada so the people can see and assess for themselves if the terms and conditions, if any, are in line with our national laws and Canada’s obligations under the Basel Convention. There ought to be a complete inventory and accounting of Canada’s wastes in the country,” Lucero stressed.

From 2013 to 2014, a total of 103 shipping containers of mixed household garbage from Canada disguised as scrap plastic for recycling reached Philippine shores. Twenty-six of these containers were illegally disposed of at a landfill in Tarlac in 2015 until exposed and halted by furious citizens and officials.

A waste characterization study conducted by the government in 2014 confirmed that 64 percent of the garbage shipments were residuals, which can no longer be recycled and should be properly disposed of.

CANADA TRASH
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