Cordillera LGUs urged to help deter air pollution

BAGUIO CITY – The Baguio, La Trinidad, Itogon, Sablan Tuba and Tublay (BLISTT) governing body has approved a resolution urging the local government units to pass ordinances requiring identification of green buffer zones and a car-less day each month as public awareness on air pollution.

During its second quarter meeting on Thursday, the governing body said the proposals request all local chief executives of the BLISTT to declare a car-less day in their areas of jurisdiction and to urge transport groups to maintain green buffer zones.

The body is composed of mayors of the BLISTT, the governor of Benguet, national government agency regional directors, academic institutions, transport groups, the media and environment organizations in Baguio.

The emission inventory of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) for the years 2013 to 2015 showed that at least 70 percent of air pollution source came from vehicles while 24 percent came from area source and one percent from stationary sources.

The BLISTT airshed ambient air quality monitoring showed a good air quality on La Trinidad while Baguio City shows fair air quality.

Environment Management Bureau (EMB) CAR Regional Director Reynaldo Digamo said part of the quality control action plan of the BLISTT municipalities is to showcase the air quality in a locality.

Baguio has passed its environment code in December 2017 to maintain the air quality of this mountain resort city.

At the meeting, La Trinidad Municipal Administrator Atty. Miller Quintin Jr. revealed that the local council has approved on first reading the clean air ordinance.

“We are hopeful that the council will immediately calendar the succeeding readings to hopefully pass the ordinance within the year,” he said.

Dr. Raymundo Rovillos, University of the Philippines Baguio chancellor relayed that their campus implements a car-less day every Wednesday, prohibiting the entry of private vehicles in the campus to encourage the students and workers to walk.

With the information provided by Rovillos, members of the governing body have agreed to expand their call to include institutions in the car-less day and adapt the UP-Baguio initiative to clean the air. Liza Agoot/ PNA –