Manila Water plants 1.4M trees under its watershed protection and management program
Since the launch of East Zone concessionaire Manila Water’s watershed management program in 2006, Manila Water has partnered with the public and private sector, such as the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System, various local government units, indigenous people residing in watershed communities, and other stakeholders for the implementation of its watershed management program.
Manila Water, as a water and wastewater service provider, recognizes the need for water security for the current and future generations, and at the same time, care for the environment where water comes from. The Company anchors on nature-based, sustainable solutions and environmental stewardship of key watersheds that it depends on, such as watershed protection and rehabilitation.
As of December 2022, a total of 1,462,945 trees were planted and nurtured by Manila Water in different parts of the Philippines. In the East Zone, the Company’s watershed protection efforts focus on the Ipo Watershed, La Mesa Watershed, Upper Marikina Watershed, and General Nakar Watershed. The Company has also been supporting the MWSS’ Annual Million Trees Challenge (AMTC) since its launch in 2017.
Through its business units in the Non-East Zone, Manila Water has also pursued its watershed management and protection programs outside the East Zone: in the Nabaoy Watershed in Malay, Aklan through Boracay Water, in Villa Maria, Porac, Pampanga through Clark Water, watershed and forest areas in Laguna through Laguna Water, in Pan-As Hayiban Watershed in Calbayog, Samar through Calbayog Water, and Luyang Watershed in Carmen, Cebu through Cebu Water.
Among the tree species planted under the Company’s tree planting activities are Narra, Mahogany, Yakal, Kamagong, Ipil, Sandalwood, Maguilomboy, Agohoy, and fruit-bearing trees that can also provide source of food and livelihood to the residents of watershed areas such as langka, rambutan, guyabano, santol, cacao and coffee trees. In Laguna, the Company has also planted fishpole bamboos.
In total, Manila Water has covered reforestation of 2,739.27 hectares of land across the Philippines.
Manila Water’s intensified watershed management program is also part of the company’s response to calls for action, aligning to the United Nations’ Sustainability Development Goals (SDG), under SDG 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), SDG 13 (Climate Action), SDG 14 (Life below Water) and SDG 15 (Life on Land).
“We also move to protect life on land through watershed protection and management programs. The company’s watershed management can help improve biodiversity and contribute to carbon sequestration that can mitigate the effects of climate change.” says Jocot De Dios, Manila Water President and CEO.