About Naga City
Naga City is a first class self-reliant component city in the Philippines. It is located in the Bicol region, a peninsula on the south-easternmost tip of the island of Luzon. Naga is 377 kilometers south-east of Manila, the nation's capital, and about 380 kilometers north-east of Cebu City. Naga is the most populous city in the region as well as the densest, and is locally known as the "Heart of Bicol" being the commercial, financial, educational, religious and cultural center of the Bicol region. Residents of the city are called Nagueños. Naga City is at the core of Metro Naga, an unofficial designation given the City and 14 municipalities in the area administered by the Metro Naga Development Council (MNDC). MNDC covers the entire 2nd district of the province of Camarines Sur, and part of its 1st, 3rd and 4th districts.
For more than 300 years, Naga has been the heart of the largest Marian devotion in this part of the country. It had also been the seat of episcopacy that covered not only Bicol but other parts of Southern Tagalog as well. Naga City has so far received over 150 regional, national and international awards and distinctions since 1988 when it started to build a status for being a model local government unit which crafted and implemented innovations in local governance. Naga City is host to the country's first and oldest normal school for girls, the first private university in Luzon outside Metro Manila, and the only Jesuit school in Bicol and Southern Luzon. These institutions have produced some of the country's well-known and foremost leaders.
Established in 1575 on order of Spanish Governor-General Francisco de Sande, the city, then named Ciudad de Caceres, earned its esteemed status as the third Spanish royal city in the Philippine islands, after Cebu and Manila. Dating back to pre-colonial period, this riverine village that eventually became a Spanish city is world-renown for its long tradition of rich cultural legacy. Its quaint charm and the people's love affair with its glorious past are always there to ensure the city's bright future.
Why Naga City?
An international news magazine has singled out Naga as one of the most improved cities in Asia because of its outstanding programs that work to ensure a livable and forward-looking environment and reinforce other traditional indicators that make life easier for its people. Recognized for its participatory mechanisms, the city government makes sure that in addressing its goals, the entire population becomes stakeholders and that transparency and accountability are promoted to ensure a clean and innovating local government.
The city's environment program focuses on three major concerns namely, solid waste management, water/river quality and air quality. Rapid urbanization, high population growth rate fueled by in-migration and increasing investments brought drastic changes in the city's financial and physical landscape.
SOLID WASTE. The main pollutants in the city come in the form of solid waste generated daily. Generally, these wastes come from various sources: residential, commercial, industrial and institutional. Naga City generates approximately 85.8 tons of waste per year, based on the latest 2009 estimates, where agricultural waste makes up a little more than one-fourth (26%) of the total volume. Food wastes make up a slightly smaller share at 23%. Paper- based materials compose 12%, while the other material categories are spread out in smaller percentages. Solid wastes are disposed of and collected via the city's garbage trucks which cross ten routes on a daily basis. Collected wastes are then dumped at the Balatas Controlled Dump site where they are segregated according to type of wastes.
LIQUID WASTE. Studies reveal that liquid waste is becoming a major concern for the city. A study on wastewater treatment facility is incorporated in the proposed septic management ordinance where the city will be very strict in the compliance of proper waste treatment by housing and establishment owners. The Local Water Utilities Agency has identified the Metro Naga Water District as its local partner in providing septic services, in exchange for the collection of environmental fees in water bills. The new wastewater treatment facility of SM City Naga, operational since April 20, 2009, has a capacity of 500 cu. meters per day but at present it is treating only around 200.
INDUSTRIAL WASTE. Industrial wastes are disposed of through water treatment plants available in the perimeter of industrial companies. These are in accordance with the Environmental Compliance Standards of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).Local industrial solid waste sources classified according to the type of wastes they generate which need disposal and treatment in a refining facility or waste water treatment plant is still insignificant in Naga. Most waste generated is disposed through an open dumpsite or sanitary landfill.
TOXIC AND HAZARDOUS WASTE. Hazardous wastes comprise 0.06% of the total volume of solid waste generated in the city. Hospital wastes are properly disposed of at the city dumpsite at Brgy. Balatas. These are color-coded to specify the type of wastes such as hazardous and highly contaminated materials, sharp objects such as fluorescent bulbs are segregated and are properly contained before disposing off completely at a septic vault with a capacity of 100 cubic meters. An incinerator is also found in 1 government hospital where hospital wastes are burned.
Recently, utilization of the facility has reached full capacity, underscoring the need for developing a new sanitary landfill and/or implementing newer and more efficient waste disposal technology. Efforts on the former have been pursued to set up a sanitary landfill in Carangcang, Magarao. But this recently suffered a setback after a leadership opposed to the project took over the Magarao local government unit in the May 2010 elections.
With the mounting garbage problem associated in the fast population growth that Naga City is facing, it is committed to addressing this problem through innovative solutions. But the technology offered by TGEG and SBSC presents not only a solution to a problem but a fresh opportunity for the city to co-generate income by putting into the power industry the potential electricity that will be produced out of it. Converting the existing Balatas dumpsite into a waste-to-energy facility with TGEG and SBSC might just be the answer to this dilemma.