By JULLIE Y. DAZA
Just because no one’s talking about water service interruptions anymore, does it mean the problem has trickled away?
Having been so traumatized and trained to expect minimum water service in the last four months, I‘m still not sold to the idea that things will normalize 100 percent, even with three or 13 more storms coming in. Nonetheless, it’s nice to hear from Manila Water’s group head for corporate strategic affairs, Jeric Sevilla, that “augmentation measures including network adjustments and technical improvements are now in place.”
The tech talk may not mean much, but with “line boosters and reinforcing lines” working in sync with the Cardona treatment plant — 60 million liters per day (from 24 mld) plus 53 mld from 40 deep wells — something’s being done other than waiting for rain to fall. (Footnote: 32 government agencies are paid to participate in the rain dance, but whose beat do they follow? Recently the President played a game with the generals, shuffling them by job title in hopes of squeezing some juice out of them. The rains came, they should’ve claimed credit!)
To think that only two weeks ago a Water Resources Bored bureaucrat said the Cardona plant “is not the remedy.” So why were we told during a Senate hearing that construction delays were to blame for the water shortage?
H2O is the commodity of the future. It will be in shorter supply than oil. To the richest tycoons with the best minds and swiftest feet belongs the wealth of the planet’s lakes and rivers, mountains and seasons of rain, enough to wash, bathe, and quench the thirst of 7 billion people. If water, the source of life (75 percent of the human body) were not as precious and profitable, why would Manila Water branch out to Vietnam plus Iloilo, Samar, Clark, Laguna, Boracay, Cebu, Calasiao (Pangasinan) and Obando (Bulacan)? Water seeks its own level. Big business follows the money.
Transfer water distribution to government hands? OMG!