MWSS chief calls for integrated watershed management program
Metropolitan Waterworks Sewerage System (MWSS) Administrator Reynaldo V. Velasco has called for a sustainable integrated watershed management program in the wake of the increase in the turbidity level at Ipo dam of raw water being supplied to its service areas.
“Recognizing the importance of watersheds in supporting the water supply of Metro Manila and adjoining provinces, MWSS needs to come up with an integrated approach towards sustainable management and protection of the watersheds,” Velasco said.
The increase in the turbidity level recently triggered intermittent water supply experienced in Metro Manila and several barangays in Bulacan.
Nevertheless, concessionaires Maynilad Water Services Inc. and Manila Water Company, Inc. were still cited by MWSS and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on their respective watershed projects underscoring their important roles on sustainable watershed management program especially in Ipo dam.
Velasco said that over the long-term, MWSS is thinking of starting a Corporate Forestry Watershed Legacy Program to encourage the adoption by various corporations and other entities of thousands of hectares of denuded portions of Ipo Dam geared towards integrated watershed management plan to reforest, maintain favourable environmental conditions and to improve the quality and amount of potable water supply to our constituents.
According to Velasco, the three MWSS concessionaires — Maynilad, Manila Water and Bulacan Bulk Water — can initially adopt 50,000 hectares each at Ipo as part of the Corporate Forestry Watershed Legacy Program and to encourage their mother companies such as the MVP Group of Companies, Ayala and San Miguel Corporation to be part of the Annual Million Tree Challenge as well as proper management, protection and nurturing of trees in the critical watersheds.