ZAMBOANGA CITY: Trade officials said there is a strong clamor to regulate the use of plastic bags and containers, including Styrofoam in Western Mindanao because it largely contributes to the huge volume of waste that clog canals and sewers and cause flood problems.
Engineer Jamir Abubakar, of the Consumer Protection Division of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), said the inter-agency ConsumerNet-9 has passed a resolution urging city and municipal and provincial councils to pass legislations that would regulate the use of those materials.
He said that polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride and polystyrene which are the base materials in the manufacture of plastics and Styrofoam are non-biodegradable, hence adding to the mountains of garbage that do not decompose even after a hundred years.
The resolution was passed unanimously to support other cause-oriented groups which are clamoring for reduction in the use of synthetic packaging materials and promote the use of the traditional and environment-friendly buri bag or tote bag made from grass and leaves of various plants.
Nazrullah Manzur, the regional trade director, said he is supporting the resolution and the clamor for the regulation in the use and distribution of materials that have deleterious impact to the environment.
He also cited Zamboanga del Sur where various government agencies, including the Pagadian Chamber of Commerce and the business sector launched last year an advocacy campaign dubbed as “Di Ko’g Plastic,” whose aim is to make every Saturday a “plastic-free day” in Pagadian City and at the same time promote the use of locally-made buri bags for shopping and marketing.