Barili mayor asked DENR to study sinkhole
BARILI Mayor Teresito Mariñas also wants the sinkhole in their town studied.
Mariñas said he requested the Mines and Geosciences Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Region 7 to conduct the study.
“We have requested further study. We wanted to know how big is the cavity below,” he said.
Marinas said while there is still water flowing in the Mantayupan Falls, he is wary that the same incident last July may happen where the falls ran dry.
“Ang falls naa gihapon tubig. Operational man ang atong mini hydro ug irrigation system (The falls still has water. Our mini hydro electric plant and irrigation system are still operational),” he said.
“Naa gyu’y kabalaka. Mag-ampo lang ta that our worst fears will not come (We are really worried. We just pray our worst fears will not come),” Mariñas added.
Last July, an ad hoc committee was created by the Provincial Board (PB) to conduct an in-depth study on what really caused the drying up of the falls.
The committee is co-chaired by other committees on environment, tourism, and peace and order.
The resolution creating the committee tasked to look into the impact of the Barili sink hole is also calling on the DENR to investigate the sinkhole in barangay Mantayupan, Barili.
The sinkhole has a far reaching impact on the town’s tourism industry as the Mantayupan Falls is the highest waterfall in Cebu. The falls also irrigate the town’s agriculture and energy needs.
In order to remedy the drying up of the Mantayupan Falls, sandbags were used to divert the flow of the river feeding on the falls to bypass the area where the sink hole is located.
It was however only effective in diverting about half of the water volume to the scenic waterfalls.
Plans to patch the part of the riverbed where the sinkhole is located with concrete has been recommended but has not yet been done almost two months after the river dried up last July 11.
Earlier, Mariñas said the Barili municipal council didn’t approve spending calamity funds to pour concrete on the riverbed where the sinkhole is located.
He said the council wants the farm owner who had his nearby property excavated to finance the construction “but Constantine Tanchan is still abroad.”
They blame the operation of heavy equipments used in developing a road in Tanchan’s farm as one of the causes of the sinkhole. /Carmel Loise Matus, Correspondent
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