AboitizPower hydro unit turns trash into cash for host communities in Benguet

July 04, 2018

AboitizPower hydro unit turns trash into cash for host communities in Benguet

For forty years now, AboitizPower run-of-river hydro business unit, Hedcor, has been supporting its host communities in every way possible, driven by the Aboitiz Group promise of advancing business and communities.

Hence, apart from its significant tax contributions to the communities, as well as various corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects, Hedcor continues to seek opportunities to collaborate with the local government units (LGUs) in driving change for a better world.

In support of the Benguet Provincial Ordinance 11-150, mandating the retrieval of empty pesticide containers, Hedcor assists its host communities, which are mostly farmlands, in complying with the said ordinance.

Since 2016, Hedcor has collected close to 5,000 pieces of assorted pesticide containers from the towns of La Trinidad, Bakun, and Sablan in Benguet. Aside from assisting the host communities in the collection of pesticide containers, Hedcor also rewards them with simple tokens of appreciation for being active partners in its environmental conservation efforts.

In addition to the collection of empty pesticide containers, Hedcor also conducts The Community HazWaste Training, wherein the communities, which are mostly into farming, are educated about the safe use and proper disposal of pesticides.

Moreover, Hedcor has an Ecomarket Day, a monthly program that enables junk shops to collect recyclables from the host communities. This has become a fun livelihood activity that children in the neighborhood look forward to. Not only do they help their parents clean their homes by segregating unusable items, but they also earn money for their school allowance.

“The children are most excited when we go to the communities to collect recyclable wastes,” said Lito Ayyokad, Hedcor Pollution Control Officer. “In the eyes of a child, discarded items are seen as additional allowance: plastic bottles for one peso each, tin cans for 50 centavos each, and scrap metals for five pesos per kilo,” he added.

Hedcor believes that by going to the households to collect recyclables, it benefits the host communities while helping preserve the environment.

“Along with the door-to-door collection of recyclables, we also educate our host communities about proper waste segregation. We encourage them to pick up waste products on their way home, segregate these properly, and prepare these for the next Ecomarket Day,” Ayokkad said.

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