By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz
The authorities are now looking into the possible liability of hotels and establishments surrounding the Manila Bay, after discoloration of water in the bay was observed last week.
“We suspect that this sudden color change from the previous dark blue to turquoise blue is caused by the direct discharge of wastewater from the treatment plants of buildings and establishments in the vicinity,” Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy Cimatu said.
After a photo made the rounds on social media showing a striking discoloration of Manila Bay, Cimatu inspected the wastewater discharge along the baywalk area and outfall No. 3 located near the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City last March 28.
He has instructed the DENR-National Capital Region and its Environmental Management Bureau to conduct a joint investigation on the sudden color change of Manila Bay’s water.
“We assure the public that the incident is now being investigated by the DENR to find out who is responsible for the discoloration,” Cimatu said.
“Once the investigation is completed, appropriate and immediate actions will be taken on who or what caused the incident,” he added.
The Manila Bay Interagency Task Force, headed by Cimatu, is mandated to enforce relevant provisions of Code of Sanitation of the Philippines (Presidential Decree 856), Philippine Clean Water Act (Republic Act 9275) and Ecological Solid Waste Management Act (RA 9003) to ensure the complete rehabilitation, restoration, and conservation of the Manila Bay.
The rehabilitation of the historic bay is a priority program of the present administration until 2022.