World Bank Group pushes study of plastic waste in Pasig River

Pasig River
Pasig River

MANILA, Philippines — Plans to study plastic wastes in Pasig River and its tributaries, Marikina and San Juan rivers, are ongoing between the World Bank Group and the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission.

Currently, the World Bank Group is looking to survey the Pasig River waterway to know the extent of the project though the official agreement is yet to be signed.

This study is part of ongoing efforts to curb plastic pollution and at the same time, support proper waste management.

During the Marine Plastics Conference in the Philippines in Manila on April 4, Senior environmental specialist Katelijn van den Berg said the study would include surveys on the sources and impact of plastic wastes in areas located along the river.

The data from the research, according to the World Bank Group, will be used for policy dialogue with the government.

The project, which would take two to three years to finish, will be funded by the World Bank Group in cooperation with the Korean government, according to World Bank senior environmental engineer Gerardo Parco.

A 2017 study conducted by American and Dutch researchers revealed that Pasig River dumps over 63,000 tons of plastics into the ocean every year, which makes it the world’s second worst contributor of plastic waste to the world’s oceans.

“The Philippines is estimated to have the 3rd highest rate of mismanaged plastic waste worldwide,” noted Agata Pawlowska, World Bank’s Manila Office Operations Manager during the conference.

“The Pasig River and Manila Bay have been identified among the water-bodies around the world that need rehabilitation most urgently,” she added. – Marje Pelayo

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