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Philippines Sends Massive Amount Of Waste Back To Canada As Government Eagerly Awaits Its Arrival

REUTERS

David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief

Canada’s Environment Minister Catherine McKenna exulted about the return of Canadian garbage from the Philippines in a Friday tweet.

McKenna told her followers, “Anchors aweigh! The containers of garbage departed the Philippines and will arrive in Canada in four weeks — where the waste will be turned into energy that’ll power homes in British Columbia.”

The 69 garbage-filled shipping containers that were part of the MV Bavaria’s cargo set sail for North America early Friday morning from the Philippine port of Subic, according to the Canadian Press.

Canada's Environment Minister Catherine McKenna gestures as she arrives for the summit of Environment ministers from the G7 group of industrialised nations in Bologna, Italy, June11, 2017. REUTERS/Max Rossi

Canada’s Environment Minister Catherine McKenna gestures as she arrives for the summit of Environment ministers from the G7 group of industrialised nations in Bologna, Italy, June 11, 2017. REUTERS/Max Rossi

The waste had been in the Philippines for so long that the country’s president had actually threatened to go to war with Canada over the trash. Rodrigo Duterte later said that it was only a figure of speech. (RELATED: Canadian Environment Minister Has ‘No Time’ For Politicians Who Question Climate Change)

Philippines' President Rodrigo Duterte holds hands with Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for a family photo during the ASEAN-Canada 40th anniversary commerative summit in metro Manila, Philippines November 14, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

Philippines’ President Rodrigo Duterte holds hands with Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for a family photo during the ASEAN-Canada 40th anniversary commerative summit in metro Manila, Philippines Nov. 14, 2017. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco

The ship should arrive in Vancouver, B.C. in about four weeks with the voyage costing the Canadian government $1.14 million (CAD).

The Philippines disposed of almost half of the initial 2,500 tons of garbage, but insisted that Canada take back the rest.

That originally proved to be a hard sell as the Trudeau government did not heed the pleas.

The Canadian garbage was originally sent to the Philippines under the guise of it being recyclable material. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who is often quick to note his commitment to strict environmental policies, will now have to deal with the massive haul, which turned out to be raw waste that included dirty diapers.

The City of Vancouver says it will dispose of “approximately 1,500 tonnes” of the waste at its Waste-to-Energy Facility in Burnaby. (RELATED: Environment Minister: Canada Will Keep Exporting ‘Most Polluting Fossil Fuel’ To The US)

In a statement Thursday, the EcoWaste Coalition in the Philippines called the return of the garbage a “victory for the rule of law, morality and the environment,” according to CP.

Aileen Lucero, national coordinator of the EcoWaste Coalition, said she feels “jubilant” that the six-year battle to get the garbage returned is finally over.

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