As reported by the Philippine Daily Inquirer, the Coalition of Clean Air Advocates (CCCA) is urging government agencies involved to firmly uphold the Clean Air Act of 1999 (Republic Act 8749).

This includes thoroughly inspecting each vehicle before they undergo the emissions tests.

In a letter to President Aquino, the CCCA wants the president no less to require the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), Land Transportation Office (LTO) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to ensure that all vehicles pass the necessary tests before being allowed to register.

“Motor vehicles undergo and pass the emission test in paper, but in reality most of them were never tested at all,” the group said in the letter.

The ‘non-appearance’ option for emissions testing has become common practice and is one of the main issues of the CCCA.

“The pervasive practice of non-appearance in the nationwide mandatory motor vehicle emission test procedures has rendered the Clean Air Act ineffective.  The major solution to clean Metro Manila’s polluted air is through regular motor vehicle maintenance supported by a real inspection test,” said the CCCA.

Based on the latest air pollution reading (June 2014), Metro Manila has total suspended particulates (TSP) of 136 ug/Ncm.  This is beyond the acceptable limit set by the World Health Organization at only 90ug/Ncm of TSP.

“If we can have the government’s full support, we will commit and challenge ourselves that together, the private and government sector will bring down the air pollution level in Metro Manila from an unacceptable air quality level of 136 ug/Ncm TSP to way down the WHO accepted standard of 90 ug/Ncm TSP by June 30, 2015,” said CCCA Chairman Leo Olarte.

According to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), 80% of the air pollution in Metro Manila comes from motorized vehicles.