Science and Environment

EMB-3 rallies LGUs to protect environment

Ramon Efren Lazaro - The Philippine Star

MEYCAUAYAN CITY  , Philippines  —  The Environmental Management Bureau (EMB)-Region 3 is reiterating its call to local government units, particularly those with jurisdiction over the Marilao-Meycauayan-Obando River System (MMORS) on LGUs to perform their role in environment protection in line with the massive Manila Bay rehabilitation effort.

The MMORS flows toward Manila Bay and has been identified by international pollution watchdog Blacksmith Institute as comprising three of the 31 dirtiest river systems in the world.

EMB Central Luzon director Lormelyn Claudio has reminded concerned LGUs of their shared responsibility in protecting the environment and recommended actions that would help in the cleanup and protection of rivers and waterways. 

Claudio wants concerned LGUs to hold the approval of mayor’s/business permit and/or sanitation permit applications of industries which have no proof that their septage had been siphoned, hauled and treated.

She also recommends the passage and implementation of an ordinance regarding septage management. 

Claudio explained that siphoning of septage was required to compel industries to comply with the Clean Water Act and the Supreme Court’s continuing mandamus to rehabilitate Manila Bay. 

Around 70 to 75 percent of the biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) loading of the MMORS come from domestic sources including septage generated by establishments.

Three septage treatment facilities are located in the city of Meycauayan and the towns of Baliwag and Norzagaray.

She said continuous inspection and monitoring for environmental protection are conducted in the towns Marilao, Obando and Sta. Maria as well Meycauayan City for the Manila Bay cleanup and rehabilitation.

Claudio said these include the inspection of illegal structures built on easements; checking of the compliance of households and individuals with local ordinances such as anti-littering; serving of notices of violation and orders to violators, and the simultaneous clean up of waterways per city/municipality and monitoring/inspection of compliance to Republic Act 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.

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