DENR eyes Butuanon to become model river

By: Fe Marie Dumaboc June 14,2017 - 10:03 PM

Engr. William Cuñado (right), regional director of Environment Management Bureau, talks about water pollution during the Kapihan sa PIA at the DENR-7 office. With him is DENR-7 officer-in-charge Emma Melana and Engr. Loreto Alburo, regional director of Mines and Geosciences Bureau 7.

The regional offices of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-7) and Environmental Management Bureau (EMB-7) are trying to develop the Butuanon River to become a model of water bodies in response to the key programs of former Armed Forces of the Philippines chief of staff and now DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu focusing on water management, the clean water and air act, and solid waste management.

The Butuanon River lies along the boundary of Mandaue City and Cebu City.

Engr. William Cuñado, EMB-7 director, said during the Kapihan sa PIA yesterday that they are now in the process of identifying establishments (mostly food processing companies) that have contributed to river pollution.

Regarding the relocation of informal settlers along the Butuanon River, the EMB-7 would just let the Mandaue City and the Cebu City governments to address the problem.

“Parang showcase from being a dirtiest river to becoming an improved one,” DENR-7 officer-in-charge Emma Melana said.

“If (river rehabilitation) is proven successful, we will replicate this to other LGUs,” Cuñado said.

Cuñado said he will meet the owners of business establishments standing along the river in a forum next week and invite them to join the “Adopt an Estero” program, which requires companies to clean any part of the river that they wish to adopt as part of their corporate social responsibility.

The EMB-7, however, is still determining the total number of establishments found along the river.

The EMB-7 is also conducting a monthly monitoring of the water quality of Butuanon River to make sure that its biological oxygen demand is already normal.

Cuñado said the biological oxygen level in some parts of the river within the jurisdiction of Cebu City is already normal, while those in Mandaue City, the biological oxygen level in most parts of the river is still below normal.

Making Butuanon River as a model of water body is also one way of preparing for next year’s International River Summit, which will be held in Mandaue City.

Melana said the DENR-7 has set aside an initial budget of P1 million for the 3rd International River Summit that will be attended by representatives of Asian countries.

The summit takes place every two years. It was first held in Iloilo City, then in Cagayan de Oro City, and in Mandaue City on December next year.

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TAGS: become, Butuanon, DENR, eyes, model, river

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