DENR chief: San Juan River cleanup set on January 2020 | Inquirer News

DENR chief: San Juan River cleanup set on January 2020

By: - Reporter / @ConsINQ
12:48 PM December 05, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu revealed Thursday that the government will focus on cleaning the dirty San Juan River by January next year.

“Ito concentration ko this January, to clean up San Juan River, kasi tingnan mo na lang sa kulay ng tubig… Dito sa San Juan [yung] kulay iba. Dirty talaga,” Cimatu said in a Stratbase forum on environment in Taguig City.

[My concentration this January is the cleanup of San Juan River because if you look at the river’s color, it is really different. It is really dirty.]


“Kapag nagpupunta kasi ako hindi pa ako masyadong lumalapit dun, nangamoy na agad [Just meters away from the river, I can smell the bad odor],” he added.


Cimatu said garbage dumped into the river came from esteros in Quezon City and San Juan City.

Informal settler families

The government is still working on relocation of more than 55,000 informal settler families (ISFs) who are allegedly polluting esteros and rivers in the country, Cimatu said.

“We have started the recording and mapping of ISFs for their resettlement and relocation… 55,059 ISFs have been recorded in National Capital Region, Region III and Region IV-A,” Cimatu said.

Cimatu said the government already relocated 61 ISFs living near Estero De San Antonio De Abad in Manila to Tala, Caloocan City.

The DENR chief noted that they are planning to put up fences between rivers and illegal settlers while the relocation is still ongoing.


Last September, Cimatu vowed to prioritize the cleanup of what what he termed the as “stinky and filthy” San Juan River, when prodded by some senators during the hearing of the Senate subcommmittee on finance on the DENR’s budget for 2020.

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TAGS: cleanup, DENR, Nation

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