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San Miguel Corporation To Fund PHP 1 Billion Cleanup Of Tullahan River

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
March 2019

San Miguel Corporation (SMC) has inked a five-year deal with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) of the Philippines to cleanup the Tullahan river. SMC has pledged to provide PHP 1 billion (USD 19 million) funding for a comprehensive dredging and cleanup program for the river. Cleaning of the 59.24-kilometer Tullahan river will play a crucial role in the rehabilitation of Manila bay, as the river traverses to several cities before reaching the shore of Manila bay.

For decades, SMC has been making efforts to make sure that only clean water is being disposed to the river through its wastewater facilities as well as dredging the Tullahan river. It has also donated backhoes and a barge to local government units for its cleanup programs in the past. To further its contribution, under the five-year agreement SMC will:

  • Implement dredging and clean-up plan provided by the DENR to reduce solid wastes and floating debris.
  • Lend equipment, manpower, and funding for equipment operations such as fuel and logistics costs.
  • Assist in the community mobilization activities of the DENR.
  • Install a trash trap, transfer dredged materials, and install signage in relation to the rehabilitation program.

The government hopes that the active participation of SMC would inspire other private companies to contribute to the rehabilitation of the river.

(Sources: Philippine Inquirer; BusinessWorld; Manila Standard)

Environmental Groups Pushing For Decentralized Waste Management

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
February 2019

The Zero Waste Cities Project Dumaguete and other environmental groups are actively pushing and presenting ideas for waste management systems at barangay level, which is the smallest administrative division in the Philippines, and for proper waste segregation starting at the source, all of which are directly related to the premise of RA-9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act. 

Zero Waste Cities Project is a partnership between barangays and the local and national non-governmental organizations: War of Waste Negros Oriental, Mother Earth Foundation, and Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives. A study conducted by Zero Waste Cities Project in selected cities around the country revealed that 61.3% of household wastes are biodegradable, 19.2% are non-biodegradable, 16.1% are residual, and the remaining 3.4% are either special or hazardous wastes.

Zero Waste Cities Projects encourages Dumaguete’s 30 barangays to work on a decentralized system and appoint designated collectors of waste. At the same time, local households should be encouraged and taught how to properly identify their wastes and the proper disposal of said wastes. In 2018, it partnered with the barangays of Lo-oc, Piapi, and Bantayan in adopting a comprehensive waste management system that includes building of small-scale Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs) which resulted in a reduction of over 60% in wastes being thrown to dumpsite and into bodies of water.

(Sources: Manila Bulletin; Negros Chronicle; Philippine Information Agency)

DENR Prepares to Launch Manila Bay Rehabilitation Project

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
January 2019

The Philippine government has entrusted the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to spearhead the rehabilitation of Manila Bay. President Rodrigo Duterte is allocating PHP 47 billion (USD 893 million) to support the clean-up. The funds are expected to be obtained from road users’ tax upon abolition of the Road Board. 

According to the DENR the rehabilitation process would tentatively be a 7-year plan although they also said that there isn’t a final completion date as it will be a time-consuming process and dependent on how the bay responds to the treatments. DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu hopes to finish the project by the end of Duterte's term in June 2022.

Manila Bay is only one of the many spots in the Philippines that is undergoing a series of clean-ups and rehabilitation. This project was long overdue for nearly 10 years, pending since December 2008, when the Supreme court issued a mandamus stating that 13 government agencies should spearhead the clean-up of Manila Bay.

Furthermore, President Duterte released a statement saying that he would not think twice about ordering establishments to close down if they are found violating any regulations on proper waste disposal such as water treatments, filtration, etc. The Manila bay Rehabilitation will commence on January 27, 2019 at The Manila Yacht Club. 

(Sources: Philippine Star; CNN Philippines; The Manila Times)

Metro Pacific Investments Setting Up Waste-To-Energy Conversion Facility

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
November 2018

Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC) has inked an agreement with Dole Philippines Inc. (DPI) to design, construct and operate biogas facilities for the company’s factories in South Cotabato, Mindanao.

The waste-to-energy project, with an estimated investment of PHP 1 billion (USD 19 million) will be developed by MPIC’s subsidiary Metpower Venture Partners Holdings Inc. (MVPHI) and its unit Surallah Biogas Ventures Corp. (SBVC). The facility is expected to produce 50,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of energy from the processed organic fruit wastes and reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by about 100,000 tons annually.

Prior to the announcement of the agreement, MPIC signed a deal with Union Bank of the Philippines to secure a PHP 5 billion (USD 95 million), 10-year loan with a fixed interest rate to fund several projects and for other general corporate purposes.

(Sources: BusinessWorld, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila Standard)

Puerto Princesa Signs Deal For PHP 240 Million Wastewater Treatment Facility

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
October 2018

The local government of Puerto Princesa, Palawan signed a PHP 240 million (~USD 4.5 million) joint venture agreement with Ecosystem Technologies International, Inc. (ESTII) and JCA 1221 Holdings Inc. to construct wastewater treatment facility.

The joint agreement will enable the construction of “Septage, Sewerage and Sanitation with a Learning Center" project on a 2,000 square meters of land that was reclaimed by the city government under a usufruct agreement. According to the Philippines News Agency (PNA), the city government will share PHP 25 million (~USD 466 thousand) of the total project cost, while the PHP215 million (~USD 4 million) will be apportioned between ESTII and JCA 1221 Holdings for the construction and operation of the facility.

The project is anticipated to be completed in one and a half year, which is set to begin in 2019 and will be completed by 2020. The project proponents are confident that once completed, it will be capable of providing uninterrupted water service to the public and guaranteed that they will only use bacteriological process and will not use other chemicals, except chlorine for wastewater treatment. To be specific, the Sequence Bio Reactor (SBR) and Sequence Bio-Membrane Reactor (SBMR) technologies will be employed in the project, which will allow biological recovery of multiple sources of contaminated water for reuse.

(Sources: Philippine News Agency, Palawan News)

MWSS, SKorea’s Daegu Ink Water Agreement

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
September 2018

The Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) and South Korea’s Daegu City signed a memorandum of understanding to develop solutions to water-related problems, improve their respective water systems, and strengthen cooperation among their water institutions.

The signing of agreement happened in a special ceremony at the Korea International Water Week in Daegu Exco on September 12. Specifically, the two parties agreed to:

  • Share information on water related challenges and issues encountered by the two cities.
  • Develop an integrated water-resource management that will address the challenges and issues as well as pioneer new markets and share strategic technologies related to their respective water and sewerage systems.
  • Both parties will select, develop and implement regular cooperation programs to further develop the water industry, and boost cooperation between water-related businesses, educational institutions, and industry organizations.

According to MWSS Administrator, the agency can tap Daegu to act as third-party consultant for the sewerage and wastewater management system in Metro Manila.

(Sources: Business Mirror, Manila Times)

Maynilad Invests PHP 14 Billion (USD 263 Million) For Wastewater Capex Since Re-Privatization

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
August 2018

Maynilad Water Services, Inc. (Maynilad), which provides water and wastewater services to the West Zone of the Greater Metro Manila Area, revealed that it has spent almost PHP 14 billion (~USD 263 Million) in capital expenditure (Capex) projects to expand sewerage coverage in the West Zone since the company’s re-privatization in 2007.

This investment went into the construction of 15 new Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs), one Sewage and Septage Treatment Plant, and one Septage Treatment Plant; rehabilitation of existing wastewater facilities, acquisition of new vacuum trucks for septic tank cleaning, and installation of 27.5 kilometers of new sewer lines, among others.

Also, currently under construction are additional Maynilad STPs in Pasay, Parañaque, Valenzuela, Cavite City, and Tunasan and Cupang in Muntinupa. Once completed in 2020, Maynilad will be able to increase sewerage coverage in the West Zone to 26%.

Maynilad aims to attain 100% sewerage coverage by the end of the concession period in 2037. Meanwhile, areas that are not connected to Maynilad’s sewer network are being provided septic tank cleaning services.

For this year alone, Maynilad has allotted almost PHP 1.7 billion (USD 32 million) for wastewater projects to maintain the reliability of the wastewater network and sustain operations.

Maynilad currently operates 17 STPs, two Sewage and Septage Treatment Plants, and one Septage Treatment Plant with a combined treatment capacity of an estimated 542,000 cubic meters of wastewater per day.

(Sources: Maynilad Water Services, Inc.)

PHP 300 Million Wastewater Treatment Project Planned For Davao City Coast Village

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
July 2018

The city government of Davao together with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in Region 11 will build a PHP 300 million (~USD 56 thousand) Sanitation Embankment Project (SEP) of a coastal village as part of clean up drive of Davao River.

The project aims to treat the wastewater going out to the sea and river. Smaller channels with eight-inch pipes will be placed to distribute wastewater from the houses to the bigger pipes in the larger channels, creating a simplified sewage system. Existing channels provided by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will be used to segregate the wastewater from the rainwater, and effectively distribute the waste to the sani-embankment. 

SEP is a brainchild of Sanifyt, a partnership between Dutch and Filipino entities that is aiming to reduce flood risks, reduce environment pollution of residences along the Davao River, and improve the sanitary conditions in informal settlements. 

The project, which will be 1.13-km long, 15m wide and 3.5m high will feature the used of vertical helophyte filter system technology (a technology that separates effluents from water so that water free of bacteria can flow the river) as well as recreational design features like bicycle lane, pedestrian lane, basketball court and skatepark.

The plan includes a four-lane bypass road from the Bolton Bridge to the proposed coastal road to increase mobility in the downtown area. 

(Sources: Philippine News Agency, Mindanao Times)

Cebu Government Releases 10-Year Waste Management Plan

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
June 2018

The Cebu Provincial Government has released a 10-year waste management plan to address the poor management of wastes by its local government units (LGUs) by 2026. The plan aims to divert 90% of the total waste generation by the LGUs at the end of 2026, by promoting composting for biodegradable waste and adoption of new environment-friendly technologies for recycling. 

Three strategies have been identified for the 10-year plan, namely: policy advocacy, capacity building and direction intervention.

  • Under policy advocacy, the Provincial Government will push for the passage and strict enforcement of local legislation in support to the solid waste management (SWM) program and provide rewards and incentives by incorporating SWM in the “Our Cebu” program. The “Our Cebu” program aims to ensure that the entire Province of Cebu, with the leadership of all the LGUs, become an ideal place to live, work, play and engage in business.
  • Under capacity building strategy, the Provincial Government will tie-up with recycling facilities and strengthen public-private partnership (PPP) on SWM financing, provide technical assistance to municipalities and cities on SWM, and include livelihood program in the SWM plans.
  • In direct intervention strategy, the Provincial Government will ensure the development and establishment of an effective composting systems and facilities, massive information dissemination drive, and establishment of an effective and efficient waste disposal mechanisms and facilities.

A knowledge management (KM) mechanism will be established to support these three strategies. This mechanism includes an effective monitoring and evaluation system and database management and establishment a cost-recovery measure. The Cebu Provincial Government already purchased an 18-hectare property for the establishment of an integrated sanitary landfill (SLF) for clustered LGUs in Barangay Dauis Sur, in the northern town of Carmen.

(Sources: Government of the Province of Cebu)

DENR Releases Funds For Closure And Rehabilitation Of 50 Dumpsites

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
May 2018

The Environment Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) announced that it is releasing a financial aid for closure and rehabilitation of 50 open dump (OD) sites in Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon (Calabarzon) region.

The total financial grant amounts to PHP 167 million (USD 3.2 million). PHP145.47 million (USD 2.8 million) is allocated for safe closure and rehabilitation of some 50 ODs and controlled dump facilities (CDF), while the remaining PHP 21.88 million (USD 413,000.00) is for the upgrading of 45 Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) establishments.

The municipalities in Cavite province which have already received grants are:

  • Alfonso: PHP 2,195,225.80 (~ USD 42,000.00)
  • Mendez: PHP2,750,981.18 (~USD 53,000.00)
  • General Mariano Alvarez: PHP9,500,000 (~USD 181,000.00)
  • Silang: PHP9,500,000 (~USD 181,000.00)
  • Amadeo: PHP 1,219,575.80 (~USD 23,000.00)

Other recipient local government units (LGU) per province are:

  • Laguna: Alaminos, Calauan, Famy, Liliw, Mabitac, Sta. Maria and Victoria.
  • Batangas: Agoncillo, Balayan, Balete, Bauan, Calaca, Calatagan, Lian, Nasugbu, Sto. Tomas, Taal, Talisay and Tuy.
  • Rizal: Antipolo, Binangonan and Jala-Jala.
  • Quezon: Alabat, Buenavista, Calauag, Candelaria, Catanauan, Gen. Luna, Guinayangan, Lopez, Lucban, Lucena, Macalelon, Mulanay, Padre Burgos, Panukulan, Patnanungan, Perez, Quezon, San Andres, San Francisco, San Narciso, Tagkawayan, Tiaong and Unisan.

The LGUs which have received or are yet to receive financial grants for the upgrading of their MRF establishments and equipment are the cities of Bacoor, Cavite, General Trias, and the towns of Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, Magallanes, Maragondon, Mendez, Rosario, Silang, Tanza and Ternate in Cavite; Cabuyao, Calamba and San Pedro cities in Laguna, and the towns of Cavinti, Famy, Los Baǹos, Lumban, Nagcarlan, Paete, Pakil and Pila; Alitagtag, Cuenca, Ibaan, Lemery, Mabini, Malvar, Padre Garcia and San Juan in Batangas province; and Angono, Antipolo, Cardona, Morong, Pililla, Rodriguez and Tanay in Rizal; Agdanganan, Burdeos, Catanauan, Dolores, Infanta, Lucena City, Padre Burgos, Pitogo, Plaridel, Rreal, Sariaya, and Tayabas in Quezon.

(Sources: Philippine News Agency, People’s Television)

Boracay Island Closes For Six Months

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
April 2018

Boracay Island, one of the Philippines’ most popular islands for tourists will be closed for six months as announced by President Rodrigo Duterte in a bid to rescue the island from further environmental damage.

The island has been popular for its powdery white sand beaches and crystal blue water but the problems of wastes from a number of local business establishments were being dumped into the sea and buildings were constructed very close to shoreline. There were a number of sewage systems that were found to be illegally connected to the island's rainwater drainage line that connects directly to the sea while some 195 businesses and 40,000 residential properties were not connected to the sewer system.

The 6 months closure of the island will result to job losses of 36,000 people and revenue losses of PHP56 billion (USD 1.08 billion). The government will release calamity funds to aide the affected workers of the island and state of calamity will also be declared to fast track its rehabilitation.

(Sources: Independent UK; Gulf Times; ABS CBN News)

Maynilad Inaugurates USD 20.5 Million Sewage Treatment Facility In Pasay

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
March 2018

West Zone concessionaire Maynilad Water Services, Inc. (Maynilad) recently inaugurated a PH 1.07 billion (USD 20.5 million) sewage treatment plant in Pasay City, which is part of the company’s investment plan to improve wastewater infrastructure and reduce pollution loading in water bodies. Called the Pasay Water Reclamation Facility, it has the capacity to treat 46.6 million liters of wastewater per day. It uses Conventional Activated Sludge process to remove pollutants from wastewater before its discharge to the Dilain Creek, which eventually flows out to Manila Bay. This Maynilad facility was built to treat wastewater collected from about 288,000 Maynilad customers in Pasay City.

The Pasay Water Reclamation Facility is one of seven Maynilad projects funded by the USD 137.5 million loan from the World Bank, meant to accelerate the provision of sewerage and sanitation services in Metro Manila. Maynilad currently operates 18 Sewage Treatment Plants, two Sewage and Septage Treatment Plants and one Septage Treatment Plant with a combined treatment capacity of about 542,000 cubic meters of wastewater per day.

(Sources: Maynilad Water)

The Netherlands To Help With Sustainable Development Of Manila Bay

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
February 2018

The governments of the Netherlands and the Philippines have signed an MOU to develop a Manila Bay Sustainable Development Master Plan (MBSDMP). The sustainability plan aims to clean and properly manage the Manila Bay as well as to improve the living conditions of its surrounding area.

Deltares, an independent research institute that specializes in the field of water and subsurface will take the lead on MBSDMP, which is estimated to cost around EUR 5 million. EUR 1 million from this project will be paid by the Netherlands.

This project started in 2015 when the Philippines requested a group of Dutch Disaster Risk Reduction experts to Manila to inspect and assess the condition of Manila Bay and recommend solutions for its sustainable development.

(Sources: Dutchwatersector, National Economic and Development Authority, ABS CBN News)

Maynilad Investing In Rehabilitation Of Assets To Improve Services and Expand Consumer Reach

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
January 2018

Maynilad Water Services Inc (Maynilad), the West Zone water concessionaire in the metropolis, has been notably investing in adding and rehabilitation of assets to improve services and expand consumer reach.

In 2017, it spent around PHP1.5 billion (USD 29.4 million) for the construction of new pumping stations and reservoirs (PSRs) in the cities of Las Piñas, Quezon City and Muntinlupa. The new facilities, which have a combined storage capacity of 110 million liters of water, enabled Maynilad to increase water pressure from 7 psi (pounds per square inch) to 16 psi for almost 400,000 residents in some areas of Bacoor City, Las Piñas, North Caloocan and Muntinlupa. With the stronger water pressure, Maynilad is able to bring potable water to elevated portions of the said areas, which previously had no water access or had limited supply availability

In 2017, the company announced that it is putting in PHP 375 million (USD 7.4 million) for the PHP 749 million (USD 14.7 million) project to rehabilitate one of Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System or MWSS’ common purpose facilities, the Angat-Umiray transbasin tunnel in General Nakar, Quezon Province. Target completion for the 13.4-kilometer transbasin tunnel that is used to convey raw water from the Umiray River to Angat River will be in the 4th quarter of 2018. The rehabilitation project will help secure the water supply of Metro Manila residents in the face of supply uncertainties brought on by climate change. Among the rehabilitation works and upgrades that will be implemented is the retrofitting of intake/diversionary structures to withstand the effects of inclement weather such as severe flooding. The project will also add new features to the transbasin tunnel for better resiliency, such as additional slope protection, revetment walls, and steel sheet piles along the weir.

Maynilad has also awarded the construction of its PHP 2 billion (USD 39.3 million) water treatment facility, the 88 MLD Las Piñas Water Reclamation Facility to engineering and infrastructure conglomerate Megawide Construction Corporation (Megawide). For this project, Megawide partnered with Toshiba Group’s UEM India Pvt. Ltd. (UEM), and local company LinkENERGIE Industries Co., Inc. (LinkENERGIE) to deliver the project’s design and construction components.

(Sources: Maynilad Water Services, Inc; Megawide Construction Corporation)

Maynilad To Invest PHP 10 Billion For New Sewer Lines

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
December 2017

West Zone concessionaire Maynilad Water Services, Inc. (Maynilad) is investing over PHP 10 billion (USD 199 million) to install 183.6 kilometers of sewer lines within the next five years, to expedite the provision of sewerage services for its customers. The new sewer lines will be laid in the cities of Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas, Las Piñas and Muntinlupa (Brgy. Poblacion), and in the municipality of Kawit in Cavite Province. This investment will enable Maynilad to catch wastewater generated by some 2 million customers in the area, and convey it to Sewage Treatment Plants (STP) for proper treatment.

The installation of these new sewer lines will begin in the second half of 2018, and is targeted for completion by 2022. Once operational, the improved wastewater infrastructure will allow Maynilad to convey wastewater to STPs in the area with a combined treatment capacity 320 million liters of wastewater per day. Maynilad is also currently laying sewer lines in Valenzuela, Parañaque and Muntinlupa City (Brgy. Cupang and Brgy. Tunasan). From only two wastewater treatment facilities before re-privatization in 2007, Maynilad has already built 18 more, enabling it to treat some 502 million liters of wastewater as of September 2017.

(Source: Maynilad Water Services)

PHP 25 Million Facility To Recycle Plastic Waste In Metro Manila

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
December 2017

The Philippine Alliance for Recycling and Materials Sustainability (PARMS), a non-profit that brings together companies, government, NGOs and others to improve waste management in the Philippines, is set to build a recycling facility for plastic sachets in Metro Manila. The PHP 25 million (USD 497,000) facility will be able to process more than 150 metric tons of waste per year into pallets, school chairs and other plastic products. The recycling facility is part of the coalition’s comprehensive approach to address post-consumer waste that hurts the environment and clog the waterways. Other initiatives by PARMS’ include the recovery, collection, treatment, and market development for recycled products.

PARMS has eight member corporations in the FMCG sector, namely the Coca-Cola system as represented by Coca-Cola FEMSA Philippines; Liwayway Marketing Corporation; Monde Nissin Corp.; Nestlé Philippines Inc.; Pepsi-Cola Products Philippines, Inc.; Procter & Gamble Philippines; Unilever Philippines; Universal Robina Corporation; major industry groups such as the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the Philippine Plastics Industry Association; and environmental NGOs such as the Zero Waste Recycling Movement; and Philippine Business for the Environment.

The signing of agreement was witnessed by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and supported by the National Solid Waste Management Commission (NSWMC).

(Sources: The Philippine Star; Manila Bulletin; GMA News)

Waste-To-Energy Being Considered By Government

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
November 2017

Philippine environment officials have warned that thousands of tons of Metro Manila’s solid waste are causing floods, polluting water and forcing the closure of major landfill in five years if Filipinos do not recycle trash. The amount of waste coming from Metro Manila are limiting the lifespan of landfills and the government acknowledged that finding an alternative dump site is becoming a problem.

Environment officials are considering studying waste-to-energy methods of garbage disposal and put up a plan to build a waste-to-energy system to address the garbage problem in Metro Manila. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources is banking on the support of the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in boosting the capacity of local government units in Metro Manila and other parts of the country to address problems on solid-waste management, including the implementation of waste-to-energy solutions. The project aims to improve the safety closure/rehabilitation of landfill, recycling, composting, waste segregation and operation of material recovery facilities.

Under Republic Act No. 9003 or the Ecological SolidWaste Management Act of 2000, local government units are primarily responsible for waste segregation and disposal, but all Filipinos are enjoined to do their share in cleaning their surroundings.

(Sources: CNN Philippines; BusinessMirror)

DOST Launches Eco-sep In Siargao

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
October 2017

The Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Council for Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) has launched the Eco-friendly Septic Tank System (Eco-sep) in Siargao, an island with an area of approximately 437 square kilometers, located 800 kilometers southeast of Manila in the province of Surigao del Norte.

Eco-sep is a technology that will help solve the issue of wastewater contamination in beaches and ground water. DOST-PCIEERD, which funds the project, aims to install a sustainable and eco-friendly septic water management system on the island to address issues relating to untreated wastewater in resorts, public establishments and households. The inventor of the Eco-sep Technology, Dr. Merlinda Palencia, explained that the Eco-sep system contains Vigormin, an organomineral that hastens the decomposition of harmful bacteria present in septic tanks, thereby, preventing it from escaping from the tank and avoiding contamination within the sewage systems. Most septic tanks in Siargao have a bottomless design wherein the wastewater immediately seeps through the ground causing higher risk of contamination in freshwater. The Eco-sep system is expected to make a significant impact in Siargao since the source of its eco-tourism is the pristine, fresh and very clean water along its beaches. DOST-PCIEERD wants to ensure that Siargao does not follow in the footsteps of Boracay Island, where fecal bacteria are already present in its seawater.

In Siargao, Eco-sep systems are currently installed in three pilot sites: General Luna Market, General Luna High School and Traveler’s Beach Resort under a research project involving said technology. The samples collected from these sites will serve as a baseline for DOST to convince resort owners, LGUs and households to adopt the technology.

(Source: The Philippine Information Agency)

Maynilad Upgrades The La Mesa Water Treatment Plants

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
September 2017

West Zone concessionaire Maynilad Water Services is investing an estimated amount of PHP 7 billion (USD 137.77 billion) for the upgrade of its La Mesa Water Treatment Plants (LMTP) 1 and 2 in Quezon City. These facilities have a combined production capacity of 2,400 million liters per day (MLD), and supplies potable water for some nine million customers. 

The project is part of the company's PHP 42 billion (USD 826.61 billion) capital expenditure plan for the period 2013 to 2017, designed to improve water infrastructure and address water security challenges. Among the upgrades that will be implemented involve enhancing the facilities’ treatment capacity, retrofitting structures for improved earthquake resiliency, and automating processes for more reliable operations. Targeted for completion in 2020, this massive LMTP 1 and 2 improvement project will enhance the treatment technology used in these facilities to address the problem of increasing turbidity levels in the raw water coming from Angat and Ipo Dams. Maynilad is upgrading the treatment capacity of LMTP 1 and 2 from only 300 NTU (nethelometric turbidity units) to 2,000 NTU. 

Maynilad is the largest private water concessionaire in the Philippines in terms of customer base. It is the agent and contractor of the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) for the West Zone of the Greater Manila Area, which is composed of the cities of Manila (certain portions), Quezon City (certain portions), Makati (west of South Super Highway), Caloocan, Pasay, Parañaque, Las Piñas, Muntinlupa, Valenzuela, Navotas and Malabon all in Metro Manila; the cities of Cavite, Bacoor and Imus, and the towns of Kawit, Noveleta and Rosario, all in Cavite Province.

(Source: Maynilad)

Semirara Rehabilitates Panian Open-pit Coal Mine

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
August 2017

Philippine coal producer Semirara Mining and Power Corp announced that it is on track to restore the topography and ecological balance of its Panian open-pit mine located in Antique Province. The open-pit was closed in 2016 after the depletion of its coal reserves. Semirara plans to restore the Panian area to its pre-mining ecosystem through the use of overburden material from its Molave and Narra pits.

To fully complete filling the Southern Panian by 2020, the company would need over 600,00 BCM of overburden materials. Furthermore, Semirara will also use humic acid, compost, and other materials to add nutrients to the soil. The company also plans a reforestation program that includes endemic and suitable plant species.  Semirara has spent PHP 81.46 million (USD 1.6 million) for its community and environmental-stewardship projects in the country as of the first half of 2017.

In February 2017, the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) announced the closure of 23 mining firms all over the country, for violation of environmental laws. The department will work with different stakeholders, including the community, economists, environmental scientists, agriculturists, among others, for the rehabilitation of some of the closed-down areas.

(Sources: Semirara Mining; Manila Bulletin)

Maynilad Spends PHP 378 Million For Sanitation Program

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
July 2017

Philippine water concessionaire announced that it will spend PHP 378 million (USD 7.4 million) for its five-year sanitation program until 2022. The company will allot PHP 318 million (USD 6.2 million) to purchase 56 vacuum truck units to offer septic tank cleaning services to more customers. These include smaller VTUs (4 cu.m. capacity) that can enter narrow alleys so that formerly inaccessible houses may be reached and provided desludging services. The remaining amount will go to the purchase of additional septage treatment equipment, which is needed to accommodate the expected increase in septage collected from septic tanks.

The company’s sanitation program is part of its overall PHP 30.6 billion (USD 601.1 million) wastewater management program for the next fiver years that aims to help protect community health and the environment. Maynilad is the largest private water concessionaire in the Philippines in terms of customer base. It is the agent and contractor of the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System for the west zone of the Greater Manila area.

(Sources: The Standard, BusinessWorld Online)

Government Agencies Urged To Observe Green Public Procurement

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
June 2017

The Philippine government is now at the forefront of buying green through the implementation of the Green Public Procurement (GPP) Regime. This is an initiative that is part of the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2017-2022’s Strategic Framework to Ensure Ecological Integrity, Clean and Healthy Environment.

Through this GPP program, supplies, equipment and services secured by government agencies are subject to specifications that ensure reduced environmental impact throughout their life cycle.

The government is the single largest buyer in the market, and thus, establishing Green Public Procurement (GPP) will create demand for green supplies and equipment in the Philippines. Funded by the EU through SWITCH Asia, Green Public Procurement (2013-2016) is a PHP 169.2-million project that aims to promote sustainable development in the Philippines.

(Sources: Business Mirror, Department of Trade and Industry)

USD 2.4 Billion “Energy City” Proposed

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
May 2017

A joint venture between the state-run Philippine National Oil Co. (PNOC) and a private sector group that includes businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan is set to build a USD 2.4-billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Limay, Bataan, that will also serve as a special economic zone. Dubbed “Energy City,” the proposed project will be bankrolled by a consortium that includes Pangilinan, the Gregorio Araneta Inc. holding firm, and Japanese industrial giant Mitsui and Osaka Gas. The facility will be built on a nearly 500-hectare property owned by PNOC near the existing refinery of Petron Corporation.

The concept for Energy City is an integrated LNG import terminal, LNG storage facility, re-gasification plant, power generation facility, co-located industrial operations and a countrywide natural gas distribution network.

The proposal is banking on the environmental benefits of using LNG—a clean-burning source of electricity—for the power plants whose total capacity can be scaled up to 2,000 MW once demand from the growing Philippine economy increases.

(Sources: The Philippine Daily Inquirer, Department of Energy)

WWF Partners With Pure Energy To Developer Hydropower Sources

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
April 2017

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Philippines has signed a partnership with Pure Energy Holdings Corporation (PEHC) to help identify areas of opportunities to deploy renewable energy projects, specifically run-of-river hydropower projects.

Pure Energy said the projects would not only cut the country’s dependence on fossil fuels, but would become institutional investment in conserving the country’s remaining rainforests and virgin watershed areas.

PEHC, which was founded in 2013, has interests in hydropower, geothermal energy, and water supply systems throughout the country. Among its operations are three 90-year-old run-of-river hydropower plants in Laguna, which are managed under Philippine Power and Development Company. PEHC also has hydropower sites in Quezon and Camarines Sur, and in several locations in Mindanao.

(Sources: The Manila Times, BusinessWorld)

Napocor Spends PHP 431 Million For Rehab Of Watersheds

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
March 2017

The state-run National Power Corp. (Napocor) is spending PHP 431mn (USD 9mn) this year to support the rehabilitation and management of watershed areas under its jurisdiction. Under the plan, Napocor will rehabilitate 3,059 hectares with vegetative measures, implement the reduction of sedimentation and soil erosion, and increase the biodiversity of flora and fauna through conservation and ecotourism program.

The fund will come from the environmental funds under the universal charge (UC) that was approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC). The UC is a component in electricity bills to reduce the financial obligations of Napocor. It consists of stranded contract cost, missionary charge and the environmental fund.

Napocor currently manages 11 watershed systems that support hydro and geothermal power facilities in the country. Watersheds play a crucial role in the country and it support river systems and other bodies of water that are vital to the operations of the country’s hydroelectric plants. It also supports the habitats of plants and animals, and help prevent flooding such as what happens in areas near denuded forests.

(Sources: Philippine Star, Philippine Daily Inquirer)



Philippines To Shut Half Of Mines In Environmental Clampdown

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
February 2017

The Philippines government has ordered the closure of 23 mines, mainly nickel producers that account for about half of output in the world's top nickel ore supplier, in a government campaign to fight environmental degradation by the industry. The government also suspended operations at another five mines, including the country's top gold mine operated by Australia's Oceanagold Corp.

The nickel mines ordered to shut account for about 50% of the country's annual output, which analysts estimate at about 10% of the world supply. The Mines and Geosciences Bureau warned that mining investments in the country could plummet to USD 1.69 billion from the projected USD 4.45 billion as a result of the mine closures.

(Sources: Reuters, International Business Times)

WTE Solution To Address Urban Garbage Woes

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
January 2017

With the failure of the Philippines local government units (LGUs) to enforce Republic Act (RA) 9003, or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said there is no other way to solve the country’s garbage problem but through the adoption of waste-to-energy (WTE) technologies. In line with the current administration’s policy direction, the DENR is exploring partnerships in pursuit of WTE projects.

While the DENR continues to promote proper solid-waste management as mandated by law, it is also exploring partnerships with Japan, and is eyeing 10 new WTE projects this year. The two countries are eyeing WTE cooperation in Quezon City and Davao City as potential pilot sites and are mulling over 10 more projects this year. Energy from waste is in line with the government’s plan to address the looming garbage crisis in the Philippines.

(Source: SunStar Cebu)

Companies Urged To Go Green

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
December 2016

The German government has noted the presence of more environment-friendly micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the Philippines in its four-year green project in the country.

Through the Promotion of Green Economic Development Project (ProGED), a joint project between the Federal Republic of Germany and the Philippine government, there have been 544 MSMEs in 30 provinces that have “greened” their operations or have adopted climate smart practices and technology. Of the number, 53 are from Cebu, the third leading province in terms of MSME participation, data as of 2015 showed. Some of the Cebu-based establishments that took part of the project include Nature’s Legacy, Avatar Accessories and ECHOstore.

The majority of the greening strategies adopted by MSMEs include energy efficiency, solid waste management, water savings and waste water management.

In the past five years, the Philippines has been consistently ranked in the top three in the world as the most vulnerable country to climate change. According to a study of the Asian Development Bank, losses due to climate change can cut South East Asia’s GDP by up to 11% by 2100. One of the most vulnerable to disasters are MSMEs, whose business operations and long-term viability are at stake, said the German government.

(Sources: SunStar Cebu, Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Shopping Mall Commissioned With Solar PV System

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
November 2016

Gaisano Capital, Cleantech Solar, and SasonbiSolar have jointly commissioned a 381.6 kWp Solar Photovoltaic system on top of Gaisano Capital Casuntingan mall in Mandaue City, Cebu. Cleantech Solar financed the installation and will maintain the system over its lifetime, while Gaisano Capital will have clean and renewable solar electricity for its mall. SasonbiSolar, a local Solar PV integrator, installed the system.

The installation is in line with Gaisano Capital’s goal to decrease its carbon footprint and deploy renewable energy technology to its malls. Over the coming months, the Solar Photovoltaic system will be monitored and its performance will be analyzed and compared to expected carbon reduction. From this end, Singapore-based Cleantech will be providing all parties with a sophisticated web-based monitoring dashboard that will give near real-time performance statistics for Casuntingan and other future solar projects of Gaisano.

(SourceS: Cleantech Solar, Eco-Business)

BCDA, Japanese Firms MOU On Clark Green City

ENVIRONMENT - Philippines
October 2016

State-owned Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) has signed a MOU with Japanese firms Hitachi Asia Ltd and The Power Grid Solution Ltd for the development of Clark Green City. The 9,450-hectare Clark Green City is envisioned as the Philippines’ first smart, green and disaster-resilient city that will showcase the country’s capability to build a sustainable and modern city. 

The partnership will allow the Japanese firms to conduct feasibility studies, specifically for establishing an energy management system, an energy storage system, a district cooling system, and a total energy network system by way of a private utility company. BCDA said the feasibility studies are estimated to cost about PHP 10 million (USD 200,000) and are expected to be finished within six months. BCDA also sees the partnerships as further bolstering the current administration’s vision to sustain the country’s growth through more infrastructure and economic projects. Clark Green City, envisioned as the Philippines’ first green metropolis, is projected to generate over 800,000 jobs.

(Sources: The Philippines Star, GMA News Online)