Urban food gardening ordinance passed in Cebu City

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio - CDN Digital | October 08,2020 - 11:37 AM

Cebu City councilor Nestor Archival explains to participants of the Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD) Ecotour how his aquaponics garden works. | File Photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Council passed an ordinance that would oblige barangays to maximize open spaces and use them as food gardens to increase food security of the city.

In the ordinance authored by Councilor Alvin Dizon, barangays may adopt an empty lot within their jurisdictions and transform it into a food garden.

“Studies have shown that urban farms sprouting up and across cities around the world aren’t just feeding mouths, they are critical to survival and necessary to adaptation for developing regions and a changing climate,” said Dizon.

Urban food gardening may be in the form of rooftop or green roof, window, vertical wall, pots and small containers, plots, hydroponics, aquaponics, air plant, edible landscape, guerilla gardening, and community gardening.

Inventory on lots

The method of gardening must also be organic and chemical pesticides should not be used to avoid contaminated run-off water or else the water in that community may be affected.

In order to identify the lots that are viable for urban gardening, the Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor (DWUP) will do an inventory of all empty lots and public spaces in the city.

The residential sector must also do its part as subdivisions and villages are encouraged to convert empty areas to food gardens.

The ordinance would also protect the households who will choose to garden within their property, as subdivisions and villages can no longer ban gardening “as long as the activity does not affect the residential character of the neighborhood, and without prejudice to the reasonable standard of neatness and appearance imposed by the homeowners association and authorities.”

Subdivisions and villages who violate this may be fined from P2,000 up to P3,000 depending on the number of offenses.

Recognition

To entice villages, the barangays with the best urban gardens will also be recognized yearly for their innovative implementation of the ordinance.

The City Agriculture Department (CAD) will be responsible in ensuring that this ordinance will be implemented and they would also monitor the proper management of the gardens to ensure none of the barangays are using chemicals and harmful pesticides.

The ordinance is now awaiting the signature of Mayor Edgardo Labella for it to be implemented.

/bmjo

 

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TAGS: Cebu City, Councilor Alvin Dizon, food, food gardening ordinance, garden, health, security, sustainability

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