THE place is called the “Tricycle City” in Cagayan Valley or Region 2. And the ever- increasing numbers of tricycles make Tuguegarao City one of the country’s most polluted cities in terms of “air quality.”
This is according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) regional office.
DENR officials said there was a time when the city ranked number three in terms of air pollution among the densely populated cities in the country.
“I think it was during the time of [DENR] Secretary [Angelo] Reyes when [Tuguegarao] was ranked number three in terms of air pollution with Baguio City coming in number four,” said Regional Director Benjamin Tumaliuan of the DENR for Region 2.
A report from the city government recorded at least 12,000 tricycles plying daily the city’s major thoroughfares.
Many of these tricycles spew black fumes off two-stroke engines believed to be the major culprit for the city’s poor quality of air.
Tumaliuan believes it is the increasing number of tricycles plying Tuguegarao as the main reason for the pollution besetting Cagayan Valley’s northernmost city where national government agencies are located.
Informational Officer Benjie de Yro of the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) regional office said it is high time the city government took action and introduced a policy of banning the conventional use of two-stroke engine motorcycles.
“All two-stroke engine tricycles [should have been]converted into four-stroke to [reduce]air [pollution],” said de Yro who grew up in the city and preferred to ride the horse drawn carriage called “kalesa.”