Environment group urges communities to observe proper waste management to prevent dengue outbreaks
QUEZON CITY, June 3 – An environmental organization has called on communities to observe proper waste management to help prevent and control dengue outbreaks as the rainy season is about to set in and as the country continues to battle COVID-19.
“As frontliners in the fight against COVID-19 and other dreaded diseases, we expect the barangays, with the support of local public and private sector groups, to actively manage the environmental factors that can cause a surge in dengue cases,” Jove Benosa, Zero Waste Campaigner, EcoWaste Coalition.
EcoWaste Coalition reiterated the need for barangay-level “search and destroy” activities before and during the rainy season to destroy all potential breeding spots of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, the primary vector of the dengue virus.
According to the group, anything that can hold water including discarded glass and plastic bottles, tin cans, plastic bags, bottle caps, snack packs and tires, can serve as a breeding ground for dengue virus-carrying Aedes mosquitoes.
For a dengue-free environment, the EcoWaste Coalition encouraged communities to heed these 10-point reminders:
– Don’t let water go stagnant.
– Dispose of, turn over or put in storage any container that may accumulate rain water.
– Cover water buckets, drums, and tanks with lids or mosquito-proof mesh.
– Empty and clean water containers thoroughly once a week.
– Change water in flower vases weekly.
– Clean plant pots that may harbor mosquitoes.
– Drain water from plates under potted plants weekly.
– Clear clogged gutters of leaves and other debris.
– Cut or puncture tires used as roof support to avoid collecting water.
– Keep recyclables dry and clean.
The group also urged families to grow natural repellents such as basil, catnip, citronella grass, garlic, lavender, lemongrass, marigolds, oregano, peppermint, rosemary, sage and other plants that can repel mosquitoes and other insects in and around the house.
The group likewise warned the public against using household insecticides, including mosquito repellents, that have not been duly evaluated for quality and safety by government regulators as the use of such unregistered products may pose health and environmental risks. (PIA/DDCU/EcowasteCoalition)