In celebration of Earth Day, officials of 33 barangays traversing Diliman Creek and its tributaries will witness on April 19, a pact to save the creek and improve its deteriorated state.
Expected in the Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) signing are Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje, Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista, Philippine Mine Safety and Environment Association (PMSEA) President Luis Sarmiento, and Sagip Ilog Pilipinas Movement Executive Director Myrna Jimenez. Serving as witnesses in the signing are officials of 33 barangays, DENR-Environmental Management Bureau Director Juan Miguel Cuna, EMB-NCR Director Roberto Sheen, and Laguna Lake Development Authority General Manager Rodrigo Cabrera.
According to Paje, the signing strengthens the rehabilitation of Diliman Creek which is one of the major tributaries of Pasig River.
“Maintaining clean waterways is a collective priority. The first MoA we signed for Diliman Creek was with PMSEA, and this time we’re strengthening the participation of the barangays surrounding the creek to prevent garbage from clogging the waterway and floating these downstream,” he said.
Part of the strategy to ensure the minimization of wastes that are dumped in Diliman Creek remains garbage- is the simultaneous clean up of Diliman Creek and its tributaries by 33 barangays traversing it every fourth Sunday of the month. This will start on April 24.
In preparation for the upcoming clean up, PMSEA will distribute cleaning implements such shovels,rakes, forks, rubber boots, gloves, and other cleaning materials to each of the 33 barangays.
The MoA signing will be held as part of the main Earth Day 2011 celebration set on April 19 at SM Megamall Activity Center.
The undertaking forms part of the “Adopt-an-Estero Program” which encourages the private sector, national and local governments and the civil society to extend support in cleaning up waterways in urban centers.
Under the MoA, the parties will undertake expanded environmental improvement of Diliman Creek as well as conduct information and education campaigns, community mobilization activities, and trainings for concerned stakeholders in support of the program.
For its part, the DENR through the Laguna Lake Development Authority and the Environmental Management Bureau will intensify monitoring of industrial/commercial establishments, and undertake, among others, regular water quality monitoring and provide the necessary technical assistance to concerned leaders and stakeholder groups in the area.
In addition to this, the concerned parties also agreed to determine the necessity of, and to the extent possible, plan for more dredging and desilting of the creek, introduction of interventions such as phyto-remediation thru constructed wetlands, planting of bamboo and other plant species along the river banks, rip-rapping or coco-matting, construction, and greening of linear parks.
To date, a total of 58 MoAs have been signed with various private companies nationwide to help revive water bodies in different portions of the country.
This article was written by my kumare-friend, Karen Pacpaco.
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