Plastic straws, stirrers being banned in Bacolod


An ordinance authored by Councilor Wilson Gamboa, Jr. prohibiting the use and distribution of plastic straws and stirrers – to be enforced by the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO), was approved on third and final by the City Council.

Approved on Nov. 14, 2018, the Gamboa-authored ordinance is rooted on the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 (RA 9003), on the protection of health and environment, and the Local Government Code of 1991 (R.A. 7160) which empowers the Sangguiang Panlungsod (SP) to enact ordinances that regulates activities within the city in order to promote the general welfare.

The “Prohibition of Plastic Straws and Stirrers Ordinance” tackles plastic materials that contain elements that cannot easily be decomposed causing severe environmental pollution.

Experts estimate that around 437 million to 8.3 billion plastic straws are dumped on the entire world’s coastlines, prompting Gamboa to draft the ordinance to eliminate the distribution of plastic straws and stirrers.

Once implemented, it will also curb trash build-up in the city and will promote the use of eco-friendly materials such as paper, plant, and vegetable which can save existing marine resources severely affected by plastic wastes.

Gamboa said, that prior to the passage of the “ban plastic straws and stirrers” ordinance, some 250 officials and residents of Barangay Sum-ag led by their Barangay Captain Rodney Carmona had already approved a resolution banning the use of single-use plastic straws during their annual Martesan Festival last November 13, 2018, and vowed to extend this to post-festival activity.

The resolution was filed by Sum-ag Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Chairman Jason Villarosa who saw the alarming trash build-up of plastic straws and other plastic materials scattered in all parts of the barangay.

To be enforced by the Bacolod Police and the Environment and Natural Resources Office (ENRO) on all business applicants, the “Prohibition of Plastic Straws and Stirrers Ordinance” cites the prohibition as: 1. Vending or selling, delivering or deploying and giving or distributing for any purpose of plastic straws and stirrers, whether or not to be used for any kind of beverage are prohibited; 2. Preparing or packaging of plastic straws and stirrers whether or not for distribution outside the City; 3. Using of plastic straws and stirrers for any purpose except for medical or emergency purposes.

Subject to existing laws, rules and regulations, any plastic straw and stirrer found in violation to the ordinance shall be confiscated and be disposed of in accordance to RA 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2001.

This ordinance shall take 15 days after approval, posting, and publication in a newspaper of local circulation.* (News/Photo courtesy of NDB)

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