By ACE ALEGRE
BAGUIO CITY — Baguio’s disastrous Irisan dump site is ordered to be permanently shut down by the Court of Appeals (CA).
The appellate court in its 13-page decision has also issued a writ of continuing mandamus directing the Baguio City government to cease and desist from utilizing the Irisan dumpsite as an open or controlled dump facility, or as a holding or staging area for any kind of garbage-related activity.
The Supreme Court on January 17 this year issued a Temporary Environmental Protection Order (TEPO) halting the use of the open dumpsite or even as temporary holding or staging point for wastes in relation to the petition for Writ of Kalikasan filed by Benguet Rep. Ronald Cosalan, Tuba residents and La Union local town leaders after 6 were killed and several houses were buried in a huge trash slide on August 27, 2011 during typhoon Mina.
Health experts have also found the potable water sources down Tuba town, in Benguet where the massive trash of plastics cascaded, to have been contaminated.
“The order by the Court of Appeals has empowered groups or people who wanted local government units to be more responsible in managing their wastes,” said Rep. Cosalan.
The petitioners and respondents later agreed in a joint motion for rendition of a consent decree, which was filed before the Special 6th Division of CA.
The CA has also ordered incumbent and incoming Baguio officials to immediately implement the city’s plan to convert and establish the area of Irisan dumpsite as an eco-park.
CA also allowed the rehabilitation plan for the Irisan dumpsite subject to the approval and further modification by national government agencies.
The city government was ordered by the CA to submit within six months its detailed compliance with the consent decree while it must observe periodic submission of reports.
Also, the CA directed the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to strictly monitor the compliance by all concerned parties with the decree. # nordis.net