Comprehensive Clean-up of Zapote River Kicks off at the Outset of Ocean Month

Comprehensive Clean-up of Zapote River Kicks off at the Outset of Ocean Month

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          The comprehensive clean-up of the Zapote River kicked off in Brgy. Molino 3, Bacoor City on May 2, 2018 along with the commencement of the celebration of the month of May as Ocean Month.

        “’Pag sinabing comprehensive clean-up, talagang ‘yan ay matindi,” Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) CALABARZON (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon) Regional Director Sofio B. Quintana said as he described the seriousness of the activity.

         The director opted to join the clean-up activity despite his already scheduled trip with President Rodrigo R. Duterte to Bondoc Peninsula in Mulanay, Quezon for the awarding of Certificates of Land Ownership Award (CLOA).

         “It is but my official and moral obligation to be here. Kasi ito pong usapin sa Zapote River ay nasimulan noong isang taon, July 2017, noong ako’y nasa National Capital Region kasama ng ating mahal na kalihim, Secretary Roy A. Cimatu,” Quintana explained.

          Quintana said, at that time, the Secretary instructed him to clean the filthy river. “Sabi ko, ‘sir, iyan pong Zapote River ay boundary ng NCR at Calabarzon Region’, kaya hindi nagtagal, minabuti namin na pumunta kay City ENRO (City Environment and Natural Resources Officer of Bacoor),” he added.

        “Kamakailan, nagkaroon ng pagpupulong doon sa opisina ni kasamang Rolly (Rolando Vocalan, Bacoor City ENRO) at marami pong napagkasunduan at isa lang ito sa activities, itong comprehensive clean-up,” said Quintana.

         The city ENRO related the clean-up activity to a broomstick, saying “hindi puwedeng isang tingting lang, hindi puwedeng dalawang tingting lang, kailangang madaming tingting para maganda ang linis.”

          With lamentation, he called on all the residents of Brgy. Molino 3 to have a sense of responsibility to maintain the cleanliness of the river once it is cleaned.

         “Hindi porket may pumupulot ng basura ay may karapatan na ang taong magkalat… Sana naman po, pag-alis namin dito, meron po kayong responsibilidad na panatilihing malinis ‘yong aming mga nilinis,” Vocalan requested the nearby residents.

          “Kasi ang pagtatapon po sa ilog ay seconds lang, pero araw po ‘yan para angatin, para mawala. Ganoon po kahirap ‘yan, kaya sa komunidad po, napakasuwerte ng barangay na ito na mayroong maglilinis ng manwal dito… Ito po ay isang goodwill at example po. Sana po sa mga taga-rito, i-maintain nyo po ang mga nilinis ng ating mga kasama,” city ENRO Vocalan said, which the DENR-Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) Calabarzon’s Michael Dapdapig strongly supported.

         Meanwhile, the Chief, Technical Services Division, DENR-Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) Cavite, Reynaldo Belen emphasized the importance of discipline in maintaining the cleanliness in the area. He also appealed that the clean-up be done not only in the barangay but also in the whole province as the wastes disposed at the upper areas will eventually flow down the low-lying ones.

          Director Quintana likewise pointed out that it is important for everybody to have dedication in the conduct of the comprehensive clean-up. He reminded that such activity is a shared responsibility of each and every one, and that the DENR is merely the agency mandated to take the lead in the same.

       Spearheaded by the city government of Bacoor, the comprehensive clean-up was participated in by representatives from the DENR CALABARZON; DENR-PENRO Cavite; Cavite Provincial Government ENR Office; Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA); Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH); Brgy. Molino 3, Bacoor City; and DENR-EMB Calabarzon.

          During the latest meeting of the DENR and the city government, it was agreed to create a technical working group to formulate the guidelines for the long-term management of the Zapote River.

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DENR Calabarzon, on alert for Ompong

       

          Power outage and water disruption. These are the expected consequences of the onslaught of Typhoon Ompong, estimated to make a landfall on the northern portion of the Philippine islands in less than 24 hours.

          In preparation, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) CALABARZON (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) is calling for volunteers to help.

          DENR Calabarzon Assistant Director for Technical Services, Arturo E. Fadriquela said the plan is to prepare their field personnel for two packaged services. The first package is to provide chainsaws with skilled operators and porters, and the second one is to deliver fully-charged generator sets.

          Fadriquela, the designated captain for the relief and rescue operations, said they will be in close coordination with the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) should their services be needed.

         “Kapag ang hiningi sa atin ay tumulong sa clearing ng area, ang gagawin lang pagpasok sa kalsada, may nakaharang (na puno) itabi, putol, itabi… Wala nang retrieval ‘yon, saka na ‘yon kasi mabilisan ‘yon e. Kailangan kasi ma-clear ‘yung daan para makapasok ang serbisyo, pagkain, tubig,” Fadriquela said.

          He also said they are looking into the possibility of providing go bags to the affected communities, and warm bodies to be of aid in other services. “Kung hindi naman apektado, maging available din ang mga tao natin kung saka-sakaling i-deploy sa mga repacking,” the assistant regional director said.

          “We would like to have an inventory of standby generators and water tanks that people can lend and we can mobilize in areas of greatest need so we are calling on people to let us know if they have one we can borrow” added DENR Calabarzon Director, Atty. Maria Paz G. Luna.

          With regard to the potential garbage accumulation, Luna said “we aim to have as close to a zero waste operation as possible because trash mounds in disaster areas turn into breeding places of pests and germs”.

          The relief and rescue operations are part of the Tayo ang Kalikasan program of the department.

          Willing volunteers may contact the DENR regional office through hotline numbers 09202068610 and 09553912684, email address This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or Facebook page @denr4aofficial.

          The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Service Administration (PAG-ASA) has raised public storm warning signal no. 1 for the entire region.

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