Hidalgo: Save our clean water supply before it is too late

THE Talomo-Lipadas watershed is the source of 97 percent of the Davao City's drinking water. This watershed serves a total of 53 villages with a total land area of 38,000 square meters.

Davao has eight watershed areas. Environmentalists are solving the problems of directing ground water to the aquifers of Talomo. Davao City Water District is looking for outer viable sources of drinking water in the whole of Davao Regions.

Adopt a watershed group project to solve the problem is a movement initiated by a non-government organization trained Bantay Bukid volunteers who have monitored and apprehended violators of environmental laws.

This group has organized in the third district of Davao to conduct monthly patrols to ensure that the Davao City Watershed Code (DCWC) is enforced in the Panigan-Tamugan watershed, the city's future source of potable water. Their reports are submitted to the City Mayor's Office and Public Safety and Security Command Center.

One example is the Bantay Bukid report to cite an offense in Barangay Gumalang for its improper waste disposal of raw materials from plantations going to the Panigan River. They caught those who have cut trees illegally using chainsaws without permits in Barangay Wines.

Bantay Bukid checks if the Watershed Code is enforced within the upland areas. If this is done our citizens are assured of their safe water supply quality and availability.

The Bantay Bukid has planted and maintained some 80,000 hills of native trees in the area since 2012. They also conduct community-based water monitoring every month to assess water quality of Panigan River. They check on other rivers clean ups. They also check on schools and communities.

Bantay Bukid reforested denuded areas of the watersheds. For reforestation they provide seedlings to be planted in the area, monitored for successful growth and replacements when they are destroyed by storms.

The International Day of Forests and World Water Day celebrated on March 21 and 22 are with the Bantay Bukid as partners in the tree planting clean up drive and safe water monitoring. The theme "Nature for Water" calls for use of nature-based solutions to address water challenges.

It has also emphasis on the role of forests for sustainable cities. The theme of my column today is sufficient safe water for the world.

What a coincidence. My daily thought for today in my internet interaction with Pope Francis in his Missio column, there is this question: Fe, how many persons have no supply of safe water? 663 million? Holy Father, I think there are much more than that as I mentioned in SunStar Davao column today. It is the micro figure of what is happening in the whole world. For comments text mobile no. 09202112534.
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