DENR eyes more corporate support for Manila Bay rehab

By Catherine Teves

February 7, 2019, 8:06 pm


MANILA – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is seeking more corporate partners for the rehabilitation of Manila Bay.

The participation of companies -- such as in the case of the Tullahan River clean-up involving San Miguel Corporation -- will help boost efforts to save Manila Bay from further environmental decay, noted DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu.

"I hope that other captains of industries can help as well," he told DENR personnel in Quezon City this week, updating them on developments related to the rehabilitation work.

Carrying out one's corporate social responsibility will better enable government to address environmental problems, he noted.

DENR Undersecretary Benny Antiporda agrees by acknowledging that the government can't solely rehabilitate Manila Bay successfully.

"We're calling for everyone's cooperation on work in Manila Bay," he said. "Only three years are left in this administration. The battle will be difficult if you're not with us."

He urged all sectors to accept the challenge of helping address Manila Bay's environmental decay.

"Those who don't want to accept such challenge and help must just avoid littering especially in waterways," he said.

Trash thrown into waterways leading to Manila Bay ends up in the body of water -- worsening pollution there, he noted.

Cimatu thanked SMC for offering to help clean up the Tullahan River. SMC made such offer upon learning that cleaning rivers is one activity for the rehabilitation and Tullahan River is the dirtiest waterway draining into Manila Bay, he noted.

"They accepted the challenge right away and will clean up and provide equipment," he said.

Earlier, Cimatu said the government will undertake the rehabilitation in three phases over a period of about seven years. Aside from cleaning up rivers and 'esteros' leading to Manila Bay, he said that the rehabilitation will include relocating some 220,000 informal settler-families there and along its coast. (PNA)