BAGUIO CITY – The City Environment and Parks Management Office (CEPMO) is requiring owners of new establishments to erected in the different parts of the city to build 3-chambered septic tanks instead of the usual 2-chambered septic tanks to make sure that sewage tanks are vault-tight sealed and not bottomless otherwise it will contaminate the ground water of the city.
Newly installed Assistant City Environment and Parks Management Officer lawyer Rheenan Diwas stated that likewise, the city government’s team of waste water management, pursuant to the city’s Environment Code, is currently conducting an inventory of all establishments producing waste water of at least 12 cubic meters per day to require them to build their own waste water treatment facility.
“We hope establishments set up prior to the passage of the city’s Environment code will likewise comply with the directive as part of their corporate social responsibility or else the city government will be constrained to raise the said matter to the court as an environmental controversy,” Diwas stressed.
He admitted the city’s waste water facility is too old, jurassic and at the verge of collapsing considering that its power motors are 1985 edition although still functional because of retrofitting, magic epoxy, and mechanical creativity of the city’s engineers and laborers.
For other parts beyond repair, he reported that the same are simply modified, in other words, the city’s waste water treatment facility is far from being efficient and is not fully operational.
According to him, the city government badly needs a new waste water treatment facility and increase its capacity to match the growth in population.
Moreover, Diwas disclosed the city’s sewer lines or system are rusted, corroded, punctured and misaligned, so that human waste travelling the pipes are unsure if they reach their destination, thus, there is a need to fully rehabilitate the network system.
Earlier, the CEPMO mobilized a team of engineers and architects in the said office and the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) to prepare the agency’s waste water treatment facility plan and cost estimate and the city government has also opened its doors to welcome proponents that are conducting feasibility studies and the like, in the hope that the goal of the city of having an improved system will soon materialize.
The Baguio sewage treatment plant can only treat some over 8,500 cubic meters of waste water daily but it is being fed with over 12,600 cubic meters of waste water daily which means the facility is working beyond its capacity over the past several years.
The said plant and the city’s sewer lines were built with the full assistance from the Japan International Cooperating Agency (JICA) that provided the over P350 million required for the project in the late 1980s.
The city government is currently sourcing out the needed funds to implement the proposed rehabilitation of the city’s waste water facility to augment the insufficient available funds it has for the huge project.
By Dexter A. See