pcb weee contract signing with rural electric cooperatives 600pxSignatories and witnesses of the signing of contract for the elimination of PCBs gather for a photo shoot.

Quezon City — To strengthen the management and disposal of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the country, the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the United Nations Development Organization (UNIDO), the Global Environment Facility (GEF) as well as the Ecowaste Coalition organized a ceremonial signing of contracts between the National Resources Development Corporation (NRDC) and 29 electric cooperatives (ECs) on January 25, 2024 to dispose of their PCB oil and transformers containing PCBs.

PCBs are dangerous contaminants that persist in both the environment and living organisms. Most of their industrial applications are in the manufacture of transformers and capacitors as coolants and insulating fluids (transformer oil).

The GEF/ UNIDO-funded project Implementation of PCB Management Programs for Electric Cooperatives and Safe E-waste Management (PCB-WEEE), which aims to dispose of 600 tons of PCB oil and PCB-containing equipment from rural electric cooperatives nationwide to the Non-Combustion POPs Facility in Bataan, subsidizes the initiative.

Eighteen of the 29 ECs were present during the signing, which was also witnessed by the National Electrification Administration officials. These were the Benguet Electric Cooperative (BENECO), Central Pangasinan Electric Cooperative (CENPELCO), Pangasinan I Electric Cooperative (PANELCO I), Quirino Electric Cooperative (QUIRELCO), Cagayan I Electric Cooperative (CAGELCO I), Isabela II Electric Cooperative (ISELCO II), Tarlac I Electric Cooperative (TARELCO I), Pampanga II Electric Cooperative (PELCO II), Tablas Island Electric Cooperative (TIELCO), Camarines Norte Electric Cooperative (CANORECO), Camarines Sur IV Electric Cooperative (CASURECO IV), Camarines Sur I Electric Cooperative (CASURECO I), Camarines Sur III Electric Cooperative (CASURECO III), Sorsogon II Electric Cooperative (SORECO II), Central Negros Electric Cooperative (CENECO), Guimaras Electric Cooperative (GUIMELCO), Leyte V Electric Cooperative (LEYECO V), and South Cotabato II Electric Cooperative (SOCOTECO II).

The event included a site visit to the facility in Mariveles, Bataan and a demonstration on the processing of PCB oils and equipment.

Undersecretary Ignatius Loyola Rodriguez, who led the DENR contingent, said that he believed that only through multistakeholder collaboration could we ensure that our environment remain a safe space for future generations and the ecosystems that sustain them.

He was accompanied by Undersecretary Analiza Teh, DENR-EMB Director Gilbert Gonzales, DENR-EMB Assistant Director Esperanza Sajul, DENR CAR Regional Director Jean Borromeo, and DENR Foreign-Assisted and Special Projects Service Director Al Orolfo. (UNIDO/ Myeka Trinidad)


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