After Barangay and SK elections, what happens to the campaign materials?

Jace Amodo
PUBLISHED May 15, 2018 04:43 pm
“It’s not waste until it’s wasted.” Photos from Ecowaste Coalition

(Inside Manila) After restless days of hearing the pop and somewhat catchy campaign jingles, we have finally voted in the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections, marking the end of the gimmicks that woo voters. However, our responsibility to the environment doesn’t end there.

Waste and toxic watch group EcoWaste Coalition had called upon the help of the candidates to be aware of the four bad Gs: Guns, Goons, Gold, and Garbage. Even though the latter is backed by Republic Act 9003, or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act, the culmination of the polls still saw tons of trash—mostly consists of promotional materials.

Aileen Lucero, National Coordinator of the EcoWaste Coalition had appealed to the candidates to voluntarily remove their campaign materials immediately after the polls on May 14. But to further promote awareness of the environmental consequences of their campaigning efforts, the advocacy group held a simple and safe recycling event on May 15.

“Sorting the campaign materials into paper, cardboard, plastic and other classifications will help in finding new uses for them," said Daniel Alejandre, Zero Waste Campaigner, EcoWaste Coalition. "Reusing, repurposing or recycling the campaign materials will conserve valuable resources from being wasted, while reducing the volume of discards requiring disposal and its associated costs.

Cardboard posters can be recycled as bookmarks, envelopes, and folders. Flyers and sample ballots can be turned into a memo or scratch pads. Tarpaulins, on the other hand, are already popularly used as a sunshade for jeepneys, tricycles, and pedicabs, or as a canopy for homes and shops. Whatever DIY item these campaign discards can produce, it’s definitely better than dumping or burning them.

Recycling doesn’t always require machinery. Sometimes, it just takes proper segregation and a little bit of imagination. Ecowaste Coalition said it best: “It’s not waste until it’s wasted.”



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