MORE than 23,000 kilograms of household wastes were collected during the second river clean-up drive organized by the Department of Environment in Natural Resources (DENR)-Central Visayas last March 22.
The 1,439.25 sacks of trash were collected by 8,164 volunteers from Bulacao River, Luyang River and Butuanon River in Cebu Province; Manaba River, Abatan River and Inabanga River in Bohol; Banica River, Sicopong River and Panam-angan River in Negros Oriental; and Señora River in Siquijor Province.
Since the start of their simultaneous river-clean up drive this year, DENR-Central Visayas officials said around 94 public and private partners have formalized their commitment to help them in rehabilitating the region's 10 priority rivers.
Gilbert Gonzales, DENR-Central Visayas executive director, said of their 94 partners, 83 of which are private firms located near or along riverbanks, and others are local government partners and national government agencies.
“We recognize the support that we are now getting from our partners, especially the support coming from the local government units and private establishments, for their commitment to help us address the huge volume of silt, wastes and other debris that have affected our river systems in the region,” Gonzales said.
The 94 partners had signed a memorandum of agreement and partnership with DENR to assist the agency through the conduct of regular clean-up activities, including undertaking expanded environmental improvement, as well as conduct information and education campaigns, community mobilization activities and trainings for concerned stakeholders.
On Saturday, March 23, DENR, represented by Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (Cenro)-Argao head Aniceto Aquino, in partnership with Cebu City Government, also conducted the launching of the Bulacao River Park Development in Barangay Inayawan in Cebu City by installing ecobricks for pathways and planting of ornamental plants along riverbanks.
On the same day, the Mandaue City Government, with the Environmental Management Bureau-Central Visayas, initiated another river clean-up and tree planting as part of the river restoration project for the Butuanon River.