MORE than 5,000 participants, mostly personnel from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and 12 other government agencies, will start tomorrow the clean-up of Manila Bay in a bid to restore to pristine condition the famous body of water.
Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu is also expected to reveal the names of establishments initially found to be non-compliant with effluent standards under the country’s clean water law.
“We will serve notices of violation to these establishments whose outfalls discharge untreated water to esteros, rivers and other tributaries that flow into Manila Bay,” the DENR chief said.
A brief program will be held at the Quirino Grandstand before the campaign dubbed “Battle for Manila Bay” which starts with a solidarity walk at 7 a.m. going to baywalk area in front of the Rajah Sulayman Park.
Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu will lead the Pledge of Commitment by all stakeholders and will declare the start of the Manila Bay rehabilitation.
“It’s all systems go for the ‘Battle of Manila Bay’. This is a battle that will be won not with force but with firm resolve,” Cimatu said.
After the launch, simultaneous clean-up activities will be held at the Las Piñas-Parañaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area and at the Marine Tree Park in Navotas.
In region 3, a separate clean-up activity will also be launched in the towns of Obando, Mariveles and Guagua in Bulacan, Bataan and Pampanga provinces while another clean-up activity will take place in Talaba Dos in Bacoor, Cavite.
Cimatu said Manila Bay and its environment can still be revived with the commitment and determination of every Filipino to do their share.
Aside from the DENR, other agencies taking part in the rehabilitation are the departments of Tourism, Interior and Local Government, Social Welfare and Development, Trade and Industry, National Defense, and Science and Technology.
The Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission, Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, National Housing Authority, Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor, Manila Water Company Inc., Maynilad Water Services Inc., various local government units, non-government organizations, and other stakeholders will also join.
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority said some portions of Roxas Boulevard will be closed to traffic tomorrow for the launching of Manila Bay Rehabilitation Project.
The southbound of Roxas Boulevard from T.M. Kalaw to President Quirino Avenue will be closed to traffic from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m.
At around 3 p.m. onwards, the southbound lane of Roxas Boulevard from P. Burgos to V. Sotto will be closed for the 40th Fiesta Del Sto Niño procession.
With Edd Reyes