Lawmakers want inquiry into Angat Dam rehabilitation

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Saturday, April 5, 2014


SEVERAL Central Luzon lawmakers are calling for an inquiry into the status of the Angat Dam Rehabilitation Project in Norzagaray, Bulacan.

Bulacan Representative Linabelle Ruth Villarica has filed a resolution seeking for an investigation into the status of the multibillion-peso Angat Dam and Dyke Strengthening Project (ADDSP).

The resolution said the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) approved the ADDSP on September 4, 2012 and the amount of P1.83-billion for its implementation.

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"The ADDSP was already approved by Neda. To date, however, the Angat dam and dyke have yet to be rehabilitated," the resolution stated.

The Angat dam and dyke, which are located in Norzagaray, Bulacan, were constructed by the National Power Corporation (NPC) in the early 1960s as a multi-purpose facility for domestic water supply, irrigation, power and flood control.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Philvolcs) previously warned that the West Valley Fault (WVF), which runs through the Central Metro Manila Area, is potentially active, and that a splay or local fault runs 200 meters east of the Angat Main Dyke and any movement of the WVF may affect the local fault.

Villarica said after the Phivolcs announcement, the Metropolitan Water Works Sewerage System (MWSS), Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (Psalm), the NPC, National Irrigation Administration (NIA), Philvolcs, Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa), Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and the province of Bulacan entered into a Memorandum of Agreement in October 2011 to identify, prioritize and implement a program and project for the safety and integrity of the Angat Dam in the event of an earthquake that may occur in the future.

The lawmaker stressed that a previous safety study recommended that the Angat Dam and Dyke must be strengthened.

"An auxiliary spillway must be constructed to accommodate the updated Probable Maximum Flood (PMF) of 12,000 cubic meters. It was this study that initiated the ADDSP," she said.

She added the purpose of the ADDSP is to secure the safety of the structures of the Angat dam and dyke should the WVF move since this is where the present source of 97-percent of Metro Manila’s domestic water originates.

"It supplies about 25,000 hectares of rice farms in Bulacan and parts of Pampanga, and power supply of 246 megawatts to the Luzon Grid. The realization of the project will also prevent downstream flooding," said Villarica.

Villarica added that the probe aims to expedite the implementation of the vital infrastructure project to ensure the safety and reliability of the Angat dam and dyke from geological and hydro-meteorological hazards. (Sunnex)

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