Bulacan pushes to revive ‘dead’ rivers

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A CONCERTED action plan to revive the biologically dead Marilao-Meycauayan-Obando River System (MMORS) proposed by Bulacan Gov. Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado got the support of Senators Cynthia Villar and Sherwin Gatchalian who committed assistance to the rehabilitation of the Bulacan rivers.

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Alvarado presented the plan during the Consultative Coordination Meeting on MMORS on Tuesday, pointing out that only the collective efforts of various government agencies and the communities can save heavily polluted waterways.

The MMORS was once branded by the New York City-based environmental watchdog Blacksmith Institute as among the most severely polluted rivers in the world.

Villar volunteered to help in the rehabilitation effort by educating the stakeholders about converting wastes on the rivers to livelihood for people.

“In Las Piñas City, I spent 15 years of my life cleaning the river since I have since admitted that I should not blame others for their wastes that flow to us. We will start with livelihood projects out of these wastes and the Departments of Agriculture and Public Works and Highways will help us,” the senator said.

She added that water lilies can be woven into mats, bags and baskets; coconut husks can be used for slope protection instead of cement; piths can be turned to charcoal; biodegradable wastes can be made into fertilizers; and plastics can be made into school chairs.

Gatchalian said intervention is necessary to solve the problem and committed to help the project until the end.

FREDERICK SILVERIO

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