Marpi dump cell at max


The first cell of the Marpi landfill has already reached maximum capacity and is currently towering at over 100 feet tall. There is a Cell 2, but before throwing any trash there, the Department of Public Works has to build Cell 3 first.

According to Enrique Dela Cruz, DPW’s Solid Waste Management director, the Marpi dump’s cells are designed to have a height limit of just 206 feet.

“When you fill up a cell, you have to go upwards and now we have already reached the limit. The limit is 206 feet but we had to stop at 106 feet as a requirement of the [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency] and the [Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality] for closure,” he said.

Currently, DPW is still operating Cell 1 until the side slopes of the cell are filled.

“We’re currently using the side slope of Cell 1 and the next cell, Cell 2, is already lined but we have to build Cell 3 in order to prevent migration of leeching to the open ground,” said Dela Cruz.

He assured that building Cell 3 is already in the process.

Dela Cruz said that DPW will soon open up Cell 2 for use while Cell 3 is being built and lined.

“Hopefully we should be able to use Cell 2 while Cell 3 is being constructed,” he said.

When asked how many cells the Marpi landfill can hold, Dela Cruz said the area can hold up to six cells.

“The whole footprint of the land is six cells. Cell 1 and 2 are lined, but Cell 3 is not lined, so that’s where we are heading,” he said.

In order to free up space in the Marpi landfill, Dela Cruz said that DPW is urging the community to bring in their recyclables to the DPW recycling center and transfer station in Lower Base.

Dela Cruz said the transfer station can take recyclable items like scrap metal, cardboard, paper, plastic, e-waste, tires, household appliances, and more.

DPW is currently preparing to ship out bundles of recyclables like cardboard, plastic, scrap metal, and e-waste that have been sitting at the transfer station since Typhoon Soudelor in August 2015.

Kimberly Bautista Esmores | Reporter
Kimberly Bautista Esmores has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at

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