DOST, Isabela State work to conserve Cagayan River
Rainier Allan Ronda (The Philippine Star) - February 14, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Region 2 and Isabela State University (ISU) are spearheading an effort to conserve the Cagayan River basin.

Engineer Sancho Mabborang, DOST 2 regional director, said the effort seeks to draw up an integrated water resource management program for the Cagayan River basin system, which is vital for the Cagayan Valley region as well as  Region 1 and the Cordillera Administrative Region, being a source of food, water for irrigation and renewable energy.

“The Cagayan River provides us so much, being a source of food from fisheries, irrigation, and even electricity which is from the Magat Dam, the Magat river being a tributary of the vast Cagayan River system,” Mabborang told The STAR.

“So it’s important for us to conserve it,” he said.

The DOST Region 2 and ISU recently organized the three-day International Training-Workshop on Integrated Water Resource Management in River Basins for Sustainable Development in Cauayan, Isabela, which drew participants from the Asian Development Bank, Japan Water Agency, Japan’s Public Works Research Institute and the International River Foundation, among others.

Mabborang said they seek to get various government agencies including the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Agriculture and their line agencies, the DOST’s various institutes and councils, and even state universities and colleges (SUCs) in Region 2 to join in drawing up a comprehensive IWRM plan and implementing it.

Science Secretary Fortunato dela Peña, keynote speaker in the opening ceremonies of the three-day conference, said DOST was ready to support water resource management and conservation initiatives not only in Region 2 and the Cagayan River basins, but in all of the country’s 18 major river basins.

He pointed out that seven out of  the 17 UN sustainable development goals are dependent on water security.

“Water is an important element to cities and human settlements that are sustainable, liveable and safe,” Dela Peña said.       

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