In Memory of Miriam: Send Illegal Garbage Shipments Back to Canada – EcoWaste Coalition


The hastened implementation of a court order to return illegal Canadian garbage
shipments to its origin will honor the legacy of the late Sen. Miriam Defensor
Santiago who firmly stood against the disposal of the imported trash in local
“We appeal to the importers and agencies in charge to fast track the removal of
the Canadian trash from our territory in honor of Miriam’s memory. 
 Let us pay tribute to her by taking action to protect our country against
waste dumping that she has vehemently denounced as an affront to our national
dignity and sovereignty.   We must
not allow our country to be treated as ‘an international trash bin’ as Miriam rightly
told us as this could also pose a serious threat to public health and the
environment,” said Aileen Lucero, National Coordinator of the EcoWaste

Last June 30, Manila Regional Trial Court (Branch 1) Judge Tita Bughao Alisuag
ordered the return of 50 container vans of Canadian garbage at the expense of
the importers pursuant to Republic Act 6969 or the Toxic Substances, Hazardous
and Nuclear Wastes Control Act.
Lucero is one of the complainants-in-intervention to Criminal Case No.
14-311191 against importers Adelfa Eduardo and Sherjun Saldon for violation of
the said law, along with co-intervenors Ang Nars Party-List, EcoWaste
Coalition, Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives, Public Services
Independent Labor Confederation, Sentro ng mga Nagkakasia at Progresibong
Manggagawa and private individuals Raphael Lopez and Arjohn Queral.
“As we all know, the late Senator strongly backed the re-export of the Canadian
garbage to its origin,” Lucero said, citing the two Senate resolutions that
Miriam sponsored in response to the still unresolved dumping controversy.
In May 2015, Miriam filed Resolution 1341 “expressing the sense of the Senate
that the Philippine government should consider the Basel Convention in
negotiating with the government of Canada over the issue of waste illegally
dumped on Philippine soil.”
This was followed by Resolution No. 919 filed in September 2015 urging the Senate
“to direct the proper Committee to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation,
on ways to decisively prevent illegal waste dumping from abroad, including the
ratification of the Basel Convention Ban Amendment and other legal measures to
protect the country from becoming a global dump for hazardous wastes.”

Responding to an election survey questionnaire sent by the EcoWaste Coalition
last March to all the 2016 presidential candidates, Miriam declared that: 
“We must not process the waste in the Philippines, as it sets a dangerous
precedent. If we allow one country to turn the Philippines into a garbage dump,
we are telling all other countries that they can do the same.”  
A total of 103 shipping containers of mixed household garbage from Canada
disguised as scrap plastics for recycling arrived in Manila ports some time in
2013-2014 and providently intercepted by the customs authorities. 
Twenty six of these garbage-filled containers were illegally disposed of in
2015 at the privately-run Metro Clark landfill  in Capas, Tarlac angering local government officials
and residents.