IAM writing about this law, also known as Republic Act (RA) 9003, not because I am averse to it but because I simply want to clear doubts in my mind, and I am sure in the minds of many, whether or not this law was crafted with utter reasonableness and fairness for all concerned.
This has to do, of course, with the harsh penalty awaiting people found violating the said law: imprisonment of one to 15 days and a corresponding fine of P300 to P1000.
For people that are irresponsibly using their backyard to incinerate dump, meaning burn garbage of all kinds and in the process emit smoke and obnoxious smell that tend to inconvenience the neighbors or the community as a whole--by all means implement the law to the fullest. Implement it on abusive persons showing disrespect and disregard for other people’s well being.
But for the many who have been religiously following the local government’s admonition about the importance of solid waste segregation and patiently looking forward to timely scheduled collections and even have a small space in the yard for composting, yet burns scraps of paper and some fallen leaves every now and then for a few minutes so that the smoke will drive pesky fruit tree insects away, is it reasonable and fair that the penalty still apply to them?
So I understand that burning a pot full of dried leaves every now and then still generates smoke that is bad for the health and the environment, but why are the ubiquitous outdoor barbecue grills exempted from the anti-burning law when these popular and much sought-after style of cooking food equally generates smoke and pollutes the air?