By Chito Chavez
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has strongly pushed for responsible water use in the city with the current water service situation.
As such, Belmonte issued a memorandum to the city’s department heads and task forces, enjoining them to use water responsibly and to practice water conservation measures.
“Check individual households and offices for leaks and report such to the General Services Department, your barangay officials and/or water concessionaires,” Belmonte said in her memorandum.
“When storing water, make sure that water containers/drums are covered with lid/plastic to avoid breeding grounds for dengue carrying mosquitoes,” she added.
Belmonte has mandated the General Services Department (GSD), together with the City Engineering Department, to do an inventory of all schools and city-owned buildings for the possible installation of rainwater harvesting systems and water storage tanks and to install half/full flush in all toilets.
The GSD will record baseline data on water consumption per office, building and barangay and come up with an incentive scheme for those who will be able to reduce their water consumption per month.
Belmonte ordered the Barangay Community Relations Department (BCRD) to require barangays to monitor leaks and illegal connections within their respective areas and encourage their residents to practice water conservation measures.
She directed the Department of the Building Official (DBO) to expedite the processing of excavation permits for the emergency repair of leaks to be made by the water concessionaires and the Quezon City Task Force on Transport and Traffic Management to coordinate with the MMDA for the possible lifting of the number-coding scheme for water tankers that will be used by the water concessionaires in delivering water to affected customers.
The Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (DRRMO) is tasked to coordinate with the water concessionaires for the possible use of their treated wastewater by fire trucks of the Bureau of Fire Protection and in the irrigation of landscapes and parks being maintained by the Parks Development and Administration Department (PDAD)
The Environmental Protection and Waste Management Department (EPWMD) will conduct an information campaign on responsible water use in all barangays and schools in collaboration with the water concessionaires, BCRD and the Division of City Schools
For its part, the Business Permits and Licensing Department (BPLD) is mandated to disseminate information on responsible water use to all business owners, especially those that belong to water-intensive industries.
The Radio Communications Services Office and the Public Affairs and Information Services Department (PAISD) are ordered to coordinate with water concessionaires for the widest dissemination and early release of information on water interruption schedules and tips on responsible water use, among others.
Meanwhile, Belmonte asked water concessionaires Maynilad and Manila Water to monitor leaks and illegal connections in their respective areas.
“Concessionaires will now be required to submit monthly report on repairs made and illegal connections addressed together with data on conserved water as a result of their effort,’’ Belmonte said.
Belmonte plans to tap the City Council to pass Resolution urging business owners to practice recycling, responsible water use and conservation initiatives and mandate rainwater harvesting for non-potable use.