Briones: Controversial Landfill Converts Into Biomass Renewable Energy Facility

The landfill was the subject of complaints by residents of adjacent communities in 2008 because of allegations that the landfill is not complying with environmental laws and was being used to dump hazardous waste that seriously affected the health of the people.

The once controversial landfill in Laguna (Philippines) will soon be a source of Biomass renewable energy. This was announced by Ruth P. Briones, Convenor of the Zero Waste Philippines Project and also Chair and Chief Executive Officer of Greenergy Solutions during a Consultative Forum in Tanza, Cavite held on June 18,2011.

It was noted that a 20-year partnership agreement between Severiano B. Hain, the owner of the said Private Landfill and Greenergy Solutions had been entered into for the installation, deployment , operation of a Waste Conversion Facility. The proposed MREF will totally dispose the existing waste at the same time will generate electricity that will be directed to the grid for distribution to consumers.

Briones said, the 3.5 hectare landfill will be generating electricity thru installation of a two-stage thermal Batch gasifier as waste conversion technology. The almost one-million metric tons of waste existing at the Cabuyao Landfill will be disposed and revalued with almost ninety nine percent (99%) volume reduction rate employing a technology that is compliant with the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act and the Clean Air Act.

"As a material recovery and energy facility, the project will be considered as a Biomass Renewable Energy Facility under the provisions of Republic Act No. 9513 that will enjoy the benefits under the said law", Briones further noted.

Based from earlier information, the Cabuyao landfill was the subject of controversy in 2008 because of the complaints coming from an adjacent relocation site established by the National Housing Authority. Residents of Southville in Barangay Niugan, Cabuyao, Laguna had filed a petition to the government for the closure of the said Hain Landfill complaining that they have been affected by air and water pollution. In 2006, the Hain Landfill was issued a "Cease and Desist Order" (CDO) by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

With the CDO issued, DENR was mandated to monitor the operations of the landfill and also ordered the operator to employ rehabilitation and clean-up measures that will address the pollution caused by the landfill.

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