The Makati Business Club released the Executive Outlook Survey (EOS), a survey on how the business community rated the performance of government offices, agencies, and services over the previous 12 months (July 2018 to June 2019)
The MWSS placed last out of the 69 government agencies and institutions surveyed. At the moment, we cannot as yet address the specifics of the survey, except on the issue of the water shortage.
The drought that started in the first quarter of the year, had consumers reeling under the acute water shortage. As the Angat Dam water level continued to drop, without a reserve margin, MWSS through its East Zone Concessionaire, Manila Water Company Inc., had to implement rotational water service interruptions. Despite cloud seeding operations for localized rains to replenish rainfed Angat and Ipo Dams, water levels continued to drop.
The extremely high algal bloom, which is also a by-product of the El Nino, at Laguna Lake, further triggered complaints from customers. The impact in the water treatment system became difficult to contain and MWSS’ West Zone concessionaire, Maynilad Water Services Inc. had to operate below normal production. This led water problems for customers in Muntinlupa, Las Piñas and Parañaque, and parts of Cavite province
Although saddened by the survey results, MWSS view it as a potential tool for improvement. The aftermath of a survey is one of those situations where actions speak louder than words. The Management has been exerting efforts in tapping resources to boost water supply and among its immediate strategies were:
- Operation of the Angat Low Level Outlet
- Cross-border sharing. Our concessionaires yield some volume of their allocation of water to augment water supply to the latter’s customers;
- Arresting the causes of non-revenue water, e.g. prompt repair of pipe leaks
- Hydraulics and water pressure management in the concession area;
- Reactivation of existing deepwells and development of new deepwells as approved by the NWRB;
- Mobilization and Operation of the Concessionaires’ Mobile Water Treatment Plants,
Water Tankers and Impounding Tanks
- Cloud seeding activity in cooperation with the Bureau of Soils and Water
- Continuing Public Information Campaign
Aside from the immediate strategies, medium to long-term strategies are currently being fast-tracked, they are:
- Fast tracking the development of alternative water sources that will bridge the projected deficit of about 900 MLD by 2022
- Exploration of short and medium sources projected to give a supply yield of at least 1,727 MLD.
- Continuous improvement and rehabilitation of raw water transmission systems
- Construction of additional aqueduct and tunnels from Ipo to La Mesa Dam.
Rest assured that MWSS together with its Concessionaires are working hard to fast-track the development of new water sources to ensure water availability not only during this time but beyond.