Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang reminds the public that unsegregated waste would not be collected.
Apatang told Saipan Tribune that his office would not collect waste if it is not properly segregated and if it is from a private business.
According to Apatang, his office has been cleaning up since before the all-clear signal was announced two days after Super Typhoon Yutu.
He noted that piles of waste that are not properly segregated would not be touched and would be ignored, lamenting that some people are “doing it, some of them are not.”
“…The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would not allow us to do that,” he said, adding that his office is also following a set of guidelines from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which reimburses the office for the labor.
“…We have to follow that,” he said, referring to the segregation of roofing tin; green waste such as leaves; wood; e-waste, or electrical devices; and other types of waste. “If you have mixed debris and pile it up like a mountain, it is going to stay there,” he said.
Apatang added that commercial waste, or waste collected from business entities and establishments, are also not allowed for collection.
“They have to do it on their own,” he said, adding that FEMA only allows his office to pick up residential waste.
According to Saipan Mayor’s Office field operations director Joann Aquino, there are currently 130 U.S. Army National Guard from Guam, about 94 members of the U.S. Air National Guard from Guam, about 60 members under the Department of Lands and Natural Resources, and several CNMI Museum staff focusing on debris removal throughout the island.