Cleaning our Waters

Manila Bay needs a major overhaul!

Two weeks ago, right after the storm, the Manila Bay was a mess. There’s a news bit on tv where a foreigner expressed disappointment over the garbage that has flooded the Bay, and it’s sad cause what used to be a tourist attraction (the Manila Bay sunset mmmm) has become an eyesore… and that sucks. So we really, really, really need to collectively do something about it.

top: Participants lined up along the Estero de Paco; bottom: Manila Bay Appreciation Tour.

The Supreme Court has actually issued a mandamus directing concerned government agencies, as well as local government units, to clean up the Manila Bay, and that includes all of its tributaries. So last week, we organized a Manila Bay Appreciation Tour, and has coordinated with the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission for a tour of the Estero de Paco.

We organized the Manila Bay tour so people would have an appreciation of how beautiful the water body used to be, and how it used to be the center of trade in Manila up until the Marcos era I suppose. People need to appreciate how useful something is so they would do all that they can to preserve and protect it. On the other hand, we did the Estero de Paco tour as it has been a good model of a really disgusting estero that’s now being rehabilitated and being regularly cleaned by the community. What I liked about the Estero de Paco tour is that they have “river warriors” who look after the creek. They are volunteers from the community and they have specific tasks like cleaning the creek, doing information campaign, guarding the community, among others. I think keeping river warriors around is a good way to sustain the program. Dont get me wrong, the estero is not clean yet, and with that I mean clear with fishes. Maybe it would take about twenty more years, unless there will be some grand technological intervention.

Tomorrow, the Run for Pasig River 2013 is up. Starting point will be at the Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City, and there will be free MRT rides for the participants, just present your race bib.

Save our waters! 🙂

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