Cagayan de Oro spearheads trash-to-cash program in Mindanao using digital tech


CAGAYAN de Oro City formally launched this week a trash-to-cash program that uses an e-wallet for the purchase points that can be earned from turning over recyclable materials.

The local government, through its City Local Environment and Natural Resources Office, is the first in Mindanao in the country’s south to tap the bXTRA app of Basic Environmental Systems and Technologies, Inc. (BEST), a unit of listed firm IPM Holdings, Inc.

In a statement, the city government said the Trash to CashBack Program is intended to encourage residents and business establishments to segregate their waste at source using an incentive scheme.

The bXTRA points can be used to purchase items in partner shops such as supermarkets.

The recycling program is also seen to lessen the trash being collected and dumped at the city’s sanitary landfill, according to Armen A. Cuenca, the city’s environment office head.

Mr. Cuenca called on locals to make segregation a habit to help protect the environment.

The city started enforcing a ‘no segregation, no collection’ policy in 2019.

The recyclable materials — paper and cardboard; plastic; tin, aluminum, and other metal products — can be brought at the initial designated drop-off point in Gaston Park.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ capital region office has also recently partnered with BEST. — MSJ