In an effort to showcase the commitment of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources 9 in adopting practices to ensure environmental sustainability, Regional Executive Director Crisanta Marlene P. Rodriguez signed Regional Memorandum Circular No. 001 dated August 23, 2019 prohibiting the entry, use and utilization of single-use plastics, Styrofoam and other environmentally degrading materials in all DENR 9 premises, programs, projects and activities.

Single-use plastics are commonly-used for packaging and include items intended to be used only once before thrown away.

A World Economic Forum study has predicted that by 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean. The study stated further that “each year, at least 8 million tons of plastics leak into the ocean – which is equivalent to dumping the contents of one garbage truck into the ocean every minute.”

“As we strengthen our pursuit of instilling the value of environmental stewardship and the advocacy for sustainability through education and community mobilization, we in DENR 9 will set the example through the adoption of a more environment-friendly and sustainable lifestyle,” said RED Rodriguez.

The circular prohibits the entry, sale, use and utilization of single-use plastics such as Styrofoam, plastic bags, plastic cutlery, plastic plates, straws, plastic cups, and other similar products.

plastic free denr

The prohibition applies to all programs, projects and activities within and outside the DENR Regional Office and all offices under its supervision including the Environmental Management Bureau 9, Mines and Geosciences Bureau 9, PENROs, CENROs, PAMB/PaSU Offices, and the ERDB Research and Development Extension Center.

All DENR 9 employees and other workers on job order and contractual status, students under work immersion programs and external parties are required to abide by the prohibition. Moreover, clients and guests are also enjoined to abide by the prohibition upon entry to DENR 9 premises and participation in DENR 9 activities and events.

Violation of the circular shall be subject for disciplinary action and punishable by reprimand for the first offense, fines from P1000 – P2000 for the second, third and fourth offense, fine of P3000 and community service for the fifth offense, and suspension of one to thirty days for the sixth offense.

RED Rodriguez hopes that this action will serve as a catalyst for other government agencies, local government units, the academe, and other sectors of society to take positive action in addressing plastic pollution.