BIG CROWD, BIG WASTE: City collects 100 tons of Dinagyang trash

General Services Office personnel haul a truckload of trash from the Dinagyang festival over the weekend. (GSO photo)

By Rjay Zuriaga Castor 

The City Environment & Natural Resources Office (CENRO) collected at least 100 tons of waste across the entire city following the peak events of the Dinagyang Festival on January 27 and 28.

On Tuesday, CENRO Head Engr. Niel Ravena reported that the most significant amount of waste was collected in the four judging areas: the city’s downtown, the Iloilo Provincial Capitol area, and Delgado Street.

He emphasized that the large volume of waste in the area was due to the presence of kiosks and food stalls for the Dinagyang Food Festival.

Ravena mentioned that the figure is nearly double the amount of waste collected during the previous year due to the increased number of kiosks for the food festival and a much larger number of spectators.

“Double siya compared to last year’s data because last year, we only collected around 60 tons. One thing we monitored is the increased number of our kiosks and spectators,” he said.

Seven hundred food merchants participated in the food festival, with 500 food kiosks in the Iloilo Business Park in Mandurriao and an additional 200 in the downtown area.

Ravena noted that a fleet of 17 trucks was deployed to manage waste collection, and at least five tankers were mobilized for flushing purposes in the downtown area.

As early as 3:00 a.m. on Monday, CENRO began collecting the piles of trash in the city streets.

The collected waste will be brought to the material recovery system in the city-run Material Recovery Facility in Barangay Calahunan in Mandurriao district, where it will be recycled and co-processed.

City Mayor Jerry Treñas had previously urged revelers to maintain CLAYGO (clean as you go) during the festivities and observe the environmental ordinances of the city.

“We really have to campaign very hard for this. Iloilo City has been known as the dirtiest city in the Philippines, but look at how beautiful our city is now. Things that pertain to culture take time, but we have to start somewhere. And the best way to start is now,” he said.

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