Philippine Water Partnership (PWP) was actively involved in the following events in celebration of the 2019 World Water Day

Kick-off activity

This activity was held in Brgy. Baseco, Tondo, Manila on March 15, 2019

Highlights of the program were the following:

  • Sungka Tournament
  • Lectures on:
    • Water and Wastewater – Maynilad Water
    • Community Awareness on Environmental Laws and Initiatives –        Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA)
    • Waste to Livelihood – Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission (PRRC)
    • Solid Waste Management – Environmental Management Bureau – National Capital Region (EMB-NCR)
    • Women and Children –  National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC)
    • Container Gardening / Green Entrepreneurship – Maynilad Water

 

Buhay KYUT (Kalusugan, Yamang Ugnay sa Tubig) is an Education Water Campaign Program of the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) on water conservation, health, and hygiene. The program aims to achieve a clean and healthy lifestyle for all members of the family particularly the women and children.

In celebration of this year’s World Water Day, PWP and Maynilad Water’s Daloy Dunong Water Information collaborated with LWUA on the conduct of the Buhay Kyut program in Guiteb Elementary School in Ramos, Tarlac on March 18, 2019.   This activity was also organized in coordination with Ramos Water District.

Roundtable Discussion (RTD) on Philippine Water Sector:  Gaps and Opportunities

In line with the observance of the World Water Day, a Roundtable Discussion (RTD) on the Philippine Water Sector:  Gaps and Opportunities was held on 20 March 2019 at the Joy Nostalg Hotel in Ortigas Center, Pasig City, Philippines. The event, which was a multi-stakeholder dialogue was jointly organized by the Department of International Trade of the British Embassy Manila in partnership with the Society for the Conservation of Philippine Wetlands, Inc., (SCPW) and the Philippine Water Partnership (PWP).

The intention was to enhance relationship among key Philippine oversight agencies on water, private sector, civil society organization, the academe, development partners and water end-users by sharing information of what is being currently undertaken at the same time identify areas of opportunities and potential collaboration. Specifically, the RTD was aimed to:

  • Promote and enhance relationships among key Philippine oversight agencies on water, private sector, civil society organizations, academe, development partners and water-end users
  • Share best practices on water use and conservation
  • Identify gaps and opportunities in the water sector in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 6.

Ms.  Amy Lecciones, Executive Director of SCPW and PWP Trustee   gave the Welcome Remarks while Mr. Richard Coley, Director for Trade and Investment,  British Embassy,  Manila gave the Opening Remarks.  Also featured during the event were the following topics:

  • Water Resources in the Philippines:  Status, Challenges and Opportunities by Engr. Susan P.  Abano of the National Water Resources Board (NWRB)
  • Providing Universal Access to Water and Sanitation in the Countryside by Danilo T. Basilio of the Local Water Utilities Administration
  • UK Capability on Water: World-leading Solutions to Water Challenges by Mr. Adrian Marsden , Infrastructure Leader, RUP

The presentation was followed by an interactions and discussion of the topics presented which was facilitated by Mr. Ramon B. Alikpala, former Chairman of PWP and former Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Chairman.

The discussion resulted in the preparation of a  Draft Statement on the Current Water Crisis in Manila which called for the following immediate actions:

  1. Fast-track the construction and development of new water sources for Metro Manila. To this end, we urge the government to declare the Kaliwa Dam project and other similar projects in the immediate pipeline as projects of national significance and to fast-track their bureaucratic approvals by obtaining permits in parallel rather than sequential order. Full implementation of the Ease of Doing Business Act would be very useful in this regard.  We also call upon Manila Water to hasten  completion of its Cardona Treatment Plant and its Wawa Dam Project.  As a long-term solution, steps must already be made to develop Laiban Dam, including construction of conveyance systems at the Kaliwa site, which can accommodate Laiban’s increased flows.

 

  1. Hold MWSS and Manila Water accountable. MWSS and Manila Water should be made accountable for the current water supply crisis in Metro Manila in accordance with law and contract. Any penalization of accountable parties, however, must abide by due process as governed by applicable laws and contracts. To this end, where the concerned concessionaire may be held accountable,        we strongly urge that this be done within the context of what its Concession Agreement provides so as to show the State’s continued commitment toward respecting the sanctity of contracts and its continued belief that public-private partnerships remain a key strategy in the country’s infrastructure development program. In relation to this, we call on the Senate to urgently approve House Bill No. 5828 or the Public Service Act Amendments Bill in this 17th Congress, which proposes to increase the penalties on public services violating or failing to comply with its terms and conditions in order to make them more accountable.

 

  1. Water conservation efforts. This includes the promotion and adoption of technologies and practices for more efficient water use (e. g. efficient water-consuming appliances, water reuse systems, substitute chemical-based cleaning technologies, and reduced waste of water by agricultural, commercial, domestic, and industrial consumers). In addition, concessionaires may continue reducing non-revenue water losses and introduce demand-management policies, such as mandatory labeling requirements for water-consuming appliances and proper pricing of water to reflect its true scarcity value.

 

  1. Develop a Water Security Masterplan for Metro Manila and the entire country based on sound science. With the various water requirements of the country across a variety of needs, it is necessary to approach water resource planning through the lens of the globally-recognized principle of Integrated Water Resource Management. In order to achieve this, governance over the water sector should be rethought. In the short term, via an Executive Order, the NWRB may be strengthened and given adequate resources. In the longer term, legislation should be passed (a) establishing an apex body for the water sector to act as the single lead agency to oversee and coordinate overall policy and program implementation, (b) creating an independent regulator for water supply and sanitation to harmonize regulatory practices and standards, and (3) encouraging private sector participation in the management of water resources and the provision of water services. To shepherd these reforms, we urge the President to appoint a “Water Czar” who can focus on this task of bringing order to the currently directionless water sector.

 

  1. Rehabilitating the country’s water bodies and its supporting ecosystems. Besides continuing the effort to clean up Manila Bay, this rehabilitation effort should be expanded to include other major water bodies that can serve as natural sources of water supply, storage, and power, such as Laguna Lake and the Agus and Pulangi rivers. Efforts must also be made to ensure watersheds are revitalized and maintained, while putting an end to illegal land conversion around these watersheds, which severely reduces holding capacities of these vital water-capturing systems.

 

National Water Summit

The Summit was held on 21 March 2019 at Novotel Manila in Araneta Center, Cubao, Quezon City.

Cluster A –  Governance, Resilience and Environment Sectors presented by Mr. Christopher Matthew A. Ilagan, Chairman of Philippine Water Partnership

Strategies for Addressing the Supply-Demand Issue

Governance

Cluster B –  Domestic and Urban Sectors presented by Mr. Ramon B. Alikpala, former Chairman of PWP and MWSS

Philippine Water Supply and Sanitation Master Plan (PWSSMP) 8 Key Reform Areas (KRA)

 Cluster C –  Agriculture and Economics Sectors presented by Dr. William D. Dar

Major Recommendations:

  • Creation of a Department of Water including a Water Regulatory Commission
  • Rainwater harvesting and accelerated development of irrigation system
    • Introduction of new but relevant technologies from other countries and increase level of investment for R & D support including skills development
    • Incentivize private sector investment in agricultural infrastructure development
  • Rehabilitation of 18 major river basins including watershed areas of existing NIA managed irrigation system
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