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Opinion

Time to tame/harvest the rains!

PERSPECTIVE - Cherry Piquero Ballescas - The Freeman

Gratefully, last Tuesday’s afternoon heavy rains did not last long and did not stay until the night.

We sincerely pray the homeless had dry areas to find rest and sleep after the rains.

Hopefully, the homeless will also be among the targeted 100 households for the newly-completed two five-story medium-rise buildings (a P115 million project of Cebu City and Cebu Landmasters, Inc.) in a 1,350-sqm site in Barangay Lorega-San Miguel.

May more homes for the homeless/needy be built/prioritized by LGUs.

Sadly, though brief, last Tuesday’s heavy rains also caused flooding in a number of areas in Metro Cebu (for example, knee-deep water was reported along portions of Cabangcalan, Mandaue City).

Time for Metro Cebu LGUs to put their long-publicized Metro Cebu Integrated Flood and Drainage System Master Plan into action please.  When will the Metro Cebu LGUs finally come together and leave a legacy of an effective flood and drainage system for Cebuanos?

Calling all Metro Cebu LGU Mayors and officials! This will be one priority project worth supporting!

Until then, there are simple measures that can be taken to protect constituents from the adverse impact of heavy rains and floods.

Consider rain harvesting as one example. Why not tame the rains, harvest, and manage for servicing communities and projects?

Some background notes about rainwater harvesting: “Rainwater harvesting is the collection/storage of rain, rather than allowing it to run off. Rainwater is collected from a roof-like surface and redirected to a tank/cistern/deep pit (well/shaft/borehole), aquifer/or a reservoir with percolation, so that it seeps down and restores the ground water.”

“Most rooftops provide the necessary platform for collecting water. Rainwater is mostly free from harmful chemicals, which makes it suitable for irrigation purposes.”

“Rainwater is collected when it falls on the earth, stored and utilized at a later point. It can be purified and converted into drinking water, used for daily applications, and even utilized in large scale industries.

What are the advantages of rainwater harvesting?

1. Easy to Maintain: allows us to utilize an energy resource better, helps reduce wastage. Systems for the collection of rainwater are based on simple technology. The overall cost of their installation and operation is much lesser than that of water purifying or pumping systems. Maintenance requires little time and energy.

2. Independent Water Supply: where clean water is costly or difficult to come by, rainwater harvesting is a critical source of clean water and increases the quantity of potable drinking water available.

3. Reducing Water Bills: Water collected in the rainwater harvesting system can be put to use for several non-drinking functions as well and can lead to large reduction in water bills for families, small businesses, and industries.

4. Lessens the burden of soil erosion allowing the land to thrive once again.

5. Suitable for Irrigation as rainwater is free from many chemicals found in groundwater, lessens the impact on the environment by reducing the use of fuel-based machines, and recommended for areas where forest fires and bush fires are common during summer months.

6. Reduces Demand on Ground Water and prevents the depletion of groundwater which has gone to a significantly low level in some areas where there is huge water scarcity.

7. Supplemental in Drought and is a cheap/reliable source of clean water. Even in periods of low rainfall, enough water is collected for crops to grow.

8. Reduces Floods and Soil Erosion.

9. Rainwater for Drinking Purpose, if properly managed and for non-drinking functions: cooking, bathing, flushing toilets, washing clothes and utensils, watering the garden, washing cars etc., for farming and in industries that require large amounts of water for production processes.”

Calling on all to consider taming, harvesting, and reaping the benefits of the rains!

RAIN

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