Photo credits: Veejay Villafranca/Raymond Panaligan © Greenpeace - click images to enlarge
Greenpeace is challenging presidential candidates to lay down policies that will: 1) prioritize hazards- and vulnerability-assessments to identify risks and implement adaptation measures to prevent or alleviate water shortage in case of drought; or lessen damage to crops, property and infrastructure in the case of too much rain; and 2) improve the existing capabilities of monitoring teams to develop efficient forecasting and warning systems for extreme weather events that are critical to protecting lives, property and critical environmental resources.
The Water Watch project is also calling on the public to seriously practice water conservation measures at home, such as reusing water, fixing water leaks and avoiding non-urgent water use.
Water levels in the various dams in Luzon are going down, some to very alarming levels. In Ambuklao, dam water level is 740.19 meters above sea level (masl), which is below the normal level of 752 masl. In Binga, it is at 560.25 masl, which is below the normal level of 575. In Caliraya, dam level is 285.83 masl, below the normal of 289.15 masl. And in Angat, dam waters have gone down to 179.55 masl, way below its normal level of 210 masl.
"Angat dam waters are decreasing at a rate of one centimeter per hour. In less than five days, it goes down by more than one meter. We should be very concerned already at this rate", said Dennis S. Gana, spokesperson, National Power.
He further added that National Power has done all means to keep the Angat watershed intact, but since there is no inflow of water to the reservoir due to lack of rain, not even the forest can provide the needed supply to augment the existing one.
"A more aggressive approach towards conservation is needed on the demand-side. As for our part, government will exhaust all means available to address the current water and power shortage. One of this is to maximize current water supply with more strict implementation of water allocations as given by the National Water Resources Board (NWRB). Contingencies are likewise being drawn up by the Department of Energy to address the power situation", Gana said.
Greenpeace and National Power have jointly undertaken Water Watch, a project to help increase awareness and concern among the public on the effects of Climate change on the country’s water resources. Water watch is an interactive campaign, where bloggers can log in their comments and suggestions on how to save our environment. Visit http://saangalingtubigmo.com.
For more information:
Mark Dia, Deputy Campaign Director, +63 917 843 0549, firstname.lastname@example.org
Lea Guerrero, Regional Communications Manager, +63 908 885 1140, email@example.com