Stop private-led water drilling, Davao dads urged

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Lawyer Bernard Delima, spokesperson of the water firm told the  City Council Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, to stop all drilling operations because it supposedly destroys the city aquifer.

But Delima said the City Council should also direct its attention to big mineral and distilling companies, beverage firms, and even water tankers that extract water from the Dumoy aquifer.

“Tanan sila heavy extractors (All of these are heavy extractors),” Delima said, adding these tankers sell water to other places in the region.

“If you stop DCWD, you stop all entities as well,” he said.

Delima said DCWD’s drilling operations on groundwater supply remain crucial for them to fulfill their mandate to supply their consumers with clean drinking water.

“We need to drill in order to cope with increasing water requirements of Davao City,” he said. “We are doing it because of our mandate to supply water and not for business ends.”

Delima also bared that aside from the big business who all do drilling operations on the aquifer, there also illegal deep wells near the water source.

“We tried to check other entities but we were not granted entry. Only the NWRB (National Water Resources Board) and LGU can inspect,” he said.

He added that DCWD has already planned to stop their drilling once the Tamugan bulk water project with Apo Agua Infrastractura starts operation.

“Tamugan bulk water project is surface water development project aimed at reducing dependence in groundwater… Once completed, we will be resting our groundwater wells and stop ground drilling,” Delima said.

On Tuesday, the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources urged DCWD to stop its underground drilling operations raising concerns that it would affect the city’s aquifer.

Committee chair Councilor Diosdado Mahipus Sr. said, “The water level of the city’s aquifer is fast depleting.” Instead, Mahipus suggested for DCWD to tap other alternative sources. –Armando Fenequito Jr/PNA

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