Environment News

PH green and labor groups asked Canada to take back its garbage

EcoWaste Coalition protesters in front of the Canadian Embassy Photo© http://ecowastecoalition.blogspot.com
EcoWaste Coalition protesters in front of the Canadian Embassy Photo © http://ecowastecoalition.blogspot.com

ENVIRONMENTALISTS and labor rights advocates today asked Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his country’s ambassador to the Philippines Neil Reeder urging them to cooperate with a local court’s decision to return the “imported Canadian garbage” that was surreptitiously brought to the country by unscrupulous individuals.

In a letter sent via electronic mail and faxed to the Office of the Prime Minister in Ottawa City and the Embassy of Canada in Makati City, Ang Nars Party-List, EcoWaste Coalition, Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives, Public Services Labor Independent Confederation, Sentro ng mga Nagkakaisa at Progresibong Manggagawa, and private individuals Raphael Lopez and Elaine Lucero asked Trudeau and Reeder to support the order of Manila Regional Trial Court Judge Tita Bughao Alisuag ordering the return of the imported garbage.

Judge Alisuag, in her order, said “our country should not be made a trash bin by (an)other country,” which “will violate equally important environmental laws such as R.A. 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act and R.A. 9275 or the Clean Water Act.”

“We appeal to Prime Minister Trudeau to respect the court order and extend full cooperation to the Duterte administration to ensure the immediate re-export of their garbage back to Canada,” said Dr. Leah Paquiz, former Ang Nars Party-List Representative to the 16th Congress.

PH customs officials inspecting the imported Canadian garbage Photo © http://www.pacifiqa.com
PH customs officials inspecting the imported Canadian garbage Photo ©

The letter writers, who were also the “complainants-in-intervention” to the criminal case against garbage importers Adelfa Eduardo and Sherjun Saldon who were tried in the sala of Judge Alisuag, urged the Canadian government to publicly withdraw the purported “local solution” announced by Ambassador Reeder in May 2015. According to that local solution, “the (Canadian) garbage (will be) treated locally.”

“This ‘local solution’ is utterly distasteful and illegal as ruled by the court and will only deepen the unhealed wounds of environmental injustice,” said Rene Pineda of the EcoWaste Coalition.

In lieu of the so-called “local solution,” they urged Prime Minister Trudeau to fulfill the “Canadian solution” he alluded to in November 2015 on the sidelines of the APEC Summit in response to a question raised by journalist Tina Monzon Palma regarding the garbage dumping scandal.

“The ‘Canadian solution,’ now more than ever, must categorically include the re-importation of the illegal garbage shipments for environmentally-sound disposal in Canada,” they said.

As the aforementioned case is limited to only 50 of the 103 container vans of Canadian rubbish that illegally entered our ports, the complainants asked Trudeau to voluntarily ensure the repatriation of all the illegal garbage shipments.

“To avoid further embarrassment that would come with another legal decision, we suggest that Canada should just take back all its garbage, including those not covered by the said case,” they said.

The complainants also urged Canada to pay the Philippines for all the costs incurred in dealing with your garbage, and to fix the legal loopholes that allowed the unlawful export of Canadian trash to the Philippines, including ratifying the Basel Ban Amendment.

“We want to put this garbage dumping behind us, so our countries can turn over a new leaf in our bilateral relations.  Your government can bring this controversy to a close by doing what is just: take back your garbage and send no more trash overseas,” they told Prime Minister Trudeau and Ambassador Reeder.


Read More: http://beyonddeadlines.com/2016/09/12/imported-canadian-garbage-to-be-returned-to-canada/


Nelson Flores, J.D., MSCK
A former reporter of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila Standard Today, and a regular columnist of the Metro Manila based daily tabloid newspaper Hataw; Nelson Flores is also the former Senior Associate Editor of the Houston based Fil-Am Press and former anchor of dzXL and dzRJ's weekend talk show Usaping Bayan. Mr. Flores has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Law degrees from the University of Santo Tomas and Adamson University and a holder of a study certificate from the Diocesan House of Studies, Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI). He is a Freemason and member of Reagan Lodge 1037 in Houston Heights under the jurisdiction of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Texas and a member of the Missionary Society of Christ the King (MSCK).

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