MANILA, Philippines– Located along Roxas Boulevard, Manila Bay is a natural harbor that hosts one of the world’s most majestic sunsets. However, hiding behind the alluring crimson rays of the sun are a collection of garbage and other pollutants from countless land and sea-based sources. With the ambition to restore the bay to its former glory, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources started a three-year clean up campaign, dubbed as the Battle for Manila Bay.
While the massive clean up focuses along the coast of Manila Bay, simultaneous activities are being done in various cities; one of which is the participation of Aseana City through the Adopt-an-Estero program.
Cleaner Estero means cleaner Manila Bay
Started on June 2013, Aseana Business Park Estate Association (ABPEA) partnered with DENR in rehabilitating the 1,404-meter Redemptorist Water Channel, stretching from Roxas Boulevard to Manila Bay. Aseana City’s assigned personnel collect an average of 60 to 70 sacks of garbage per week, produced by families living upstream in these canals. To date, ABPEA has already collected more than 168 metric tons of garbage.
Zeroing waste materials in these water channels might take a long time but can be sustained by the following means: (1) Provision of boats to easily collect trapped waste materials, (2) Installation of floaters and water channel barricades that are made of steel, to the upper and lower area of the water channel, (2) Regular clean-up action by Aseana City’s very own volunteer cleaners, and the (3) Innovative use of bio fences, inspired by Guatemala’s clean up movement along the Caribbean islands.
Now on its 6th year, the program already resulted into a much cleaner waterway and has now become a breeding ground for fresh water fish.
“There are so many ways to help our environment bloom again. As an individual, the easiest thing that you can do is to not litter. Pocket your trash. As an establishment owner, segregate waste materials,” urged Rhiza Montances, Environmental Compliance Head – ABPEA. Moreover, she shared that Aseana City aims to better the condition of waste disposal by spearheading environmental seminars directed to businesses and commercial estates within Aseana City. This effort includes proper segregation of garbage, treatment of wastewater discharge, and strict implementation of waste management.
In the future, Aseana City hopes to give more life to its adopted estero by increasing pedestrian activity and beautifying the landscape along the water channel. Private institutions and establishments within Aseana City are also encouraged to take part in the clean –up. Creating healthy ecosystems and keeping the environment robust will always be one of Aseana City’s fundamentals, as it progressively meets its goals of global development.