March 5, 2024

The Baguio Water District completed several pipe laying projects worth more than P100 million as preparatory measures to the anticipated water shortage due to the prolonged El Niño phenomenon.

In a press conference on Jan. 17, BWD General Manager Salvador Royeca said they identified problematic segments in their water sourcing and distribution facility from the past El Niño experiences, which was the basis in prioritizing their pipe-laying projects and the various well-drilling programs to augment their sources.

“We had to loan almost half billion from the Development Bank of the Philippines to implement priority projects and address problematic segments in our system,” Royeca said.

Some of the projects completed include the repiping of distribution line from Marcos Highway tank to Bengao entrance which was completed in November last year; installation of distribution line along Crystal Cave; upsizing of distribution line along Lower Balacbac; and repiping of transmission lines.

Ongoing projects are the installation of PVC pipe along Bakakeng Road to Marcos Highway; installation of pipe along San Carlos Heights to Middle Quezon Hill; upsizing of distribution line and meters along Dominican Hill; and installation of transmission line along Suello Road to Asin Road, among others.

“To counter the effect of drying-up of water sources due to El Niño, projects were implemented to augment the water supply in the southern portion of the city,” Royeca said.

Projects include drilling projects in Ramsey 2, Balacbac, and Montinola-Kisad area.

While the BWD is preparing for El Niño, Mayor Benjamin Magalong reminded residents to conserve water in their households and not rely on the government efforts or water distribution company alone.

The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council also finalized its contingency plan for El Niño last year in response to Department of the Interior and Local Government Memorandum Circular 2023-065 mandating all local chief executives to take precautionary measures within their respective areas of responsibility to mitigate possible sectoral impacts of El Niño. – Jessa Mardy P. Samidan