House recommends using Laguna Lake as permanent source of domestic water

Maris Federez   •   August 28, 2019   •   486

Laguna de Bay is the largest lake in the Philippines located between the provinces of Laguna and Rizal. (Photoville International/Rogz Necesito Jr.)

Despite the rising water level in Angat Dam, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) has expressed concern about the possibility of another water crisis next year.

The NWRB said that if Angat Dam fails to reach its normal operating level, Metro Manila might experience another shortage come dry season.

Because of this, Congressman Ruffy Biazon, during the House Committee on Metro Manila Development hearing on Wednesday (August 28), recommended the use of Laguna Lake as a permanent source of domestic water.

This aims to address the shortage of water supply in Metro Manila and its neighboring cities and provinces in case the water level in Angat Dam recedes anew.

“Kasi iilan lang yung nakikinabang doon eh. Pinagkakakitaan yung Laguna Lake hindi para sa paggamit ng ordinaryong mamayan kung hindi sa paggamit ng mga interes ng kumpanya,” Biazon said.

The Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) agreed that this can be done, although they admit that they do not have the funding to conduct dredging in the lake.

They also cited the expense that will be incurred in treating and eliminating the saltwater from Manila Bay that gets combined to the water in the lake.

Add to this is the fast-increasing formation of algae which affects the quality of the water.

“Ang Laguna Lake kaya niyang i-supply ang requirement for domestic water supply as source of domestic water. Ang problema lang is more on the water quality,” said Engr. Emiterio Hernandez of the LLDA.

To date, Maynilad and Manila Water get a small percentage of water supply from Laguna Lake for their customers in Metro Manila, Laguna, Rizal, Cavite, and Bulacan.

Meanwhile, water levels in several dams are continuously increasing due to the rains being experienced in the country.

As of 8:00 a.m. Wednesday, the water level in Angat Dam has reached 181.74 meters.

Ipo Dam water level, on the other hand, has gone up to 11.82 meters; while that of La Mesa Dam went up to 77.18. (from the report of Joan Nano) /mbmf

Maynilad warns of possible water service interruption in coming days

Robie de Guzman   •   October 15, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Maynilad Water Services Inc. on Tuesday warned its customers it may implement daily rotational water service interruptions in the coming days due to the declining water levels in Angat and Ipo dams.

In a statement, Maynilad said the water levels at Angat and Ipo watersheds are dropping due to scant rains in the past few days.

The west zone water concessionaire explained that because the current water allocation from Angat dam remains at 40 cubic meters per second, the water supply entering Ipo dam and Maynilad’s treatment facilities were not sufficient.

The normal water allocation is 48 cms.

If their reservoirs will not be replenished, and water levels at Angat and Ipo dams remain low, Maynilad said it may implement rotational water service interruption in the following days.

The utility firm advised customers to visit its social media accounts for the final schedule of water service interruption, which may be posted on Wednesday, October 16.

“Tandaan ang daily service interruption schedule sa inyong lugar at paghandaan ito, dahil posibleng maipatupad na ito sa mga suusnod na araw depende sa aktwal na pag-ulan na magaganap sa Angat at Ipo watersheds,”

It also reminded customers to store enough water prior to the scheduled interruption in their area.

Over 200,000 Maynilad customers to be without water supply for 10 days

Maris Federez   •   September 24, 2019

More than 200,000 Maynilad customers will be of no water supply for 10 days, beginning on September 27.

This will be due to the temporary suspension of operation of the Putatan Water Treatment Facility in Muntinlupa.

Maynilad Water Services Incorporated on Tuesday (September 24) said service improvement works are needed to be done in the plant to increase the amount of water the company supplies to its customers.

Maynilad Operations Head Ronald Padua said from the current 100-million liters per day (MLD) of water it produces from the Laguna Lake, the water concessionaire plans to upgrade it to 150-MLD.

The company believes the service improvement work which will take place from September 27 to October 7 will be a big help in preparing for any water supply crisis that might happen in the future.

“Para mangyari yun, kailangan namin i-shutdown po temporarily yung Putatan Plant 2 sa loob ng 10 araw. At inaasahan namin after that ay kaya na po naming i-operate ito at full capacity of 150 MLD,” explained Padua.

With this activity, customers from the cities of Paranaque, Las Pinas, and Muntinlupa, and several towns of Cavite.

“Lumalabas sa loob ng 10 araw dahil average 9 hours yung supply availability meaning po merong 15 hours na interrupted or wala silang tubig everyday,” Padua added.

Customers in these areas are advised to store water that will be enough to sustain them during the hours when the service interruption is in effect or there is no water supply.

Maynilad will post on its Facebook and Twitter accounts the affected barangays and the schedule of the water supply interruption.

Maynilad also made an assurance that its customers will not be charged for the service improvement expenses to be incurred in this project. (from the report of Joan Nano) /mbmf

Metro water allocation to increase on Sept. 1 as Angat dam level improves – NWRB

Robie de Guzman   •   August 26, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The allocation for Metro Manila water concessionaires will slightly increase next month as rains brought about by recent weather disturbances continue to boost the water level at Angat dam, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) said Monday.

NWRB director Servillo David Jr. said the water of Angat dam is already above the minimum operating level of 180 meters and is expected to rise further based on the rainfall projections of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Service Administration (PAGASA).

“With the current level of Angat which is already above 180 meters and expected to rise further with incoming weather disturbances and Pagasa projections of near-normal rainfall for September, there will be an adjustment in allocation for water supply and irrigation starting September 1,” he said in a message sent to reporters.

David said the current water supply allocation of 36 cubic meters per second (cms) will be increased to 40 cms for the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS). Allocation for irrigation will also go up next month.

“For water supply from 36 cms to 40 cms. There will be allocation for irrigation also up to 30 cms,” he said.

The NWRB reduced the water allocation for Metro Manila to 36 cms from 40 cms when Angat dam breached the critical level of 160 meters in June.

The allocation was a huge slash from the average allocation of 48 cms on normal days.

The reduced water allocation resulted in rotational service interruption in Metro Manila and nearby provinces in the previous month.

PAGASA earlier said it may take until September before Angat dam level returns to normal.

PAGASA Hydrologist Shiela Schneider said the projection was based on dam monitoring in previous years.

“Kasi nandito na tayo sa tag-ulan, may mga bagyo at may mag inexpect pa tayo na bagyong dadating so inaasahan, based from the historical naman natin na mga data, nakikita natin during these months talaga tumataas ang elevation ng Angat dam” she said.

Aside from Angat dam, water level at other dams in the country, including La Mesa, Ambuklao and Ipo, were also reported to have improved. (RRD with details from Correspondent Joan Nano)

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