MANILA, Philippines—Nine companies will rehabilitate four polluted waterways in the cities of Mandaluyong and Valenzuela under the “Adopt-an-Estero” (canal or creek) program of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
The companies forged partnerships with the DENR to “restore to life” the Maytunas and Buayang Bato creeks in Mandaluyong City, and Veinte Reales and Sapang Bakaw creeks in Valenzuela City, officials said on Friday.
Company representatives signed the agreements at the DENR’s central office in Quezon City in the presence of officials from the DENR and other agencies, including the Metropolitan Development Authority and the Department of Public Works and Highways.
Under one of the agreements, Toyota Shaw Inc., the EDSA Shangri-La Manila Hotel, and the Shangri-La Plaza Corp. agreed to share responsibility for the cleanup of a two-kilometer stretch of the Maytunas creek along Nueve de Febrero Street.
In another agreement, the chemical company Belman Laboratories Inc., industrial conglomerate Puyat Steel, and Legend Villas Hotel committed to rehabilitate the Buayang Bato creek in Highway Hills.
Both the Maytunas and Buayang Bato drain into the Pasig River.
In Valenzuela City, packaging companies Flexo Manufacturing Corp. and Innovative Packaging Industry Corp. agreed to clean up a 1.2-km stretch of Veinte Reales creek, while Amtes Corp. adopted a 625-meter section of Sapang Bakaw.
Both creeks are upstream of the Valenzuela-Meycauayan Rivers and drain into Manila Bay.
In a statement, Environment Secretary Ramon Paje said the new agreements were a big boost to the government’s efforts to rehabilitate dirty and clogged water channels in the metropolis.
He said the four new agreements raised to 28 the number of partnerships that the DENR has forged with the private sector to revive 21 of Metro Manila’s major waterways under the Adopt-an-Estero program.
Nationwide, the DENR has entered into a total of 348 agreements with the private sector.
“We are completely overwhelmed by the commitment of these companies to take an active role in cleaning up our creeks and waterways,” Paje said. “Their support is strengthening the public-private partnership for the environment under the Aquino administration.”
Under the agreements, the companies agree to implement surface cleanup and to provide engineering solutions such as installation of trash traps, and introduce “greening interventions,” such as planting, rip-rapping and constructing linear parks along riverbanks.
They also will assist in information and education campaigns and mobilize the community.
The DENR, through the Environmental Management Bureau, will regularly monitor the water quality at selected areas of each creek, assist in the establishment of materials recovery facilities, facilitate actions against polluters, and assist in educational activities.
The MMDA and the DPWH-National Capital Region will also assist the companies in cleaning up the creeks.