Helping Build Communities
Providing lifeline services of water and wastewater as a key ingredient to sustainable communities
Manila Water is a vital partner in every community it serves.
As a provider of water and wastewater services, Manila Water is considered an essential lifeline. People in a sustainable and empowered community should have access to clean, reliable, and affordable water, along with wastewater services that ensure public health and economic productivity of all individuals, helping reduce poverty and reduce inequality.
While providing a lifeline service, Manila Water must ensure that its people, assets, and operations are reliable and resilient towards disasters, manmade and natural. Strength in business continuity provisioning translates into the minimization of impacts to customers and the strengthened resilience of communities being served.
Manila Water and its business units have masterplans for short-, medium-, and long-term water source development projects to ensure reliable water supply. Manila Water targets to have greater available raw water than the projected water demand of the service area.
Another strategy is to improve the raw water quality from surface water affected by degraded watersheds through watershed protection rehabilitation and enhancement.
To learn more about the company’s initiatives on ensuring water security, please refer to the 2015-2020 Manila Water Climate Change Report.
Manila Water goes beyond providing water. The other half of the company’s service obligation is to collect and treat the water used by its customers, and to return it to the environment in a sustainable manner, thus ensuring clean water bodies that can be sources of drinking water and food.
Sanitation services in the form of regular septic tank desludging every 5 years are available for the served communities where sewer lines are not yet in place. By providing a longer water retention time in the septic tanks when sludge is taken out regularly, households avoid clogged plumbing and septic tanks and the preliminary removal of organic pollution and disease-causing pathogens in the wastewater is improved. The company conducts septic tank desludging in the East Zone Concession, Boracay, Clark, Laguna and some of Estate Water’s service areas. The septage from septic tanks are fully treated in Septage Treatment Facilities.
Wastewater in sewered areas is conveyed in sewer lines or in combined-sewer drainage and fully treated in wastewater treatment facilities to comply with effluent standards, protect public health, and restore water bodies. As of December 2020, Manila Water has 70 operational wastewater treatment facilities across the Philippines.
Operational Wastewater Treatment Plants as of December 2020
|Number of Wastewater Treatment Plants||Capacity (m3/day)|
Resiliency of Services
The sustainability of Manila Water’s provision of water and wastewater services to the public lies heavily on its resilience against any disruption, man-made or natural. This resiliency is a must on the physical assets, the employees and the support services that ensure a smooth recovery and restoration of operations arising from any disruption such as earthquake, floods and droughts.
Manila Water has initiated ‘Project Kawayan’, a flagship resilience program conceptualized to:
- Further improve the disaster management system, disaster response capability and organizational resiliency of the business,
- Adequately prepare, promptly respond, restore or recover its critical service and minimize service interruption in case of unavoidable incidents within tolerable recovery time, and
- Provide pre-drafted and pre-determined protocols to the organization on how to overcome a business disruption caused by an emergency through a business continuity manual The project is led by the top leaders and business continuity plan partners from various groups across the Company.
A technical working group conducts of risk assessment and business impact analyses which provide a view of possible impacts on human capital, financial, technical, reputational, operational and legal aspects of the Company.
As the Company’s long-term operational viability is threatened by climate change, Manila Water is committed to make its assets, operations and supporting actors climate resilient to ensure the continuity of services. The Company’s strategies to address the risks and opportunities of climate change are specified in the Manila Water Climate Change Policy which focuses on climate change adaptation while supporting climate change mitigation initiatives. Among the adaptation initiatives are:
• Institutionalizing resiliency and adaptation assessment in the planning, construction, operation, and maintenance of all assets
- Retrofitting existing assets and building new assets to be climate-resilient
- Strengthening disaster risk reduction and management capacity of the organization
- Taking a proactive role in developing, protecting, rehabilitating, and enhancing water sources, including watersheds, surface, and groundwater resources.
To learn more about the company’s initiatives on Climate Change adaptation and mitigation, please refer to the 2015-2020 Manila Water Climate Change Report.
TPSB, Lingap, and WASH Programs
Tubig Para sa Barangay
Manila Water believes that inclusivity is fundamental in its service expansion plans, making sure that no one gets left behind, especially the marginalized communities, also known as the base of the pyramid. The “Tubig Para Sa Barangay” (TPSB) or Water for the Community program addresses the needs of low-income communities of having clean and affordable water. Together with the innovations adopted in managing non-revenue water, the TPSB has become one of Manila Water’s initiatives that have been recognized as best practices by the global water sector.
TPSB was developed to suit the physical, social, and economic conditions of poor households through flexible financing options and a socialized tariff scheme. The program has brought about remarkable improvements in the quality of life of low-income communities in Metro Manila's East Zone.
The TPSB program has been replicated in the Philippine subsidiaries through the assistance of the Manila Water Foundation. As of December 2020, Laguna Water’s Ahon Tubig, a version of TPSB Program, has 919 water service connections since its start in 2013.
Complementing the TPSB program is the Lingap or “We Care” program which provides clean water to public service institutions such as schools, public markets, hospitals, city jails, orphanages, and churches, making sure that families have clean and safe water beyond their dwellings.
Lingap brings the benefits of potable water to a broader community by installing drinking fountains and wash areas, repairing after-the-meter pipelines. By extending its reach, Lingap provides a more widespread 24/7 access to clean water.
Manila Water Foundation programs
Manila Water Foundation (MWF) helps communities with its water access, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program. MWF implements a holistic intervention of services according to WASH. First, MWF provides access to clean and potable water in selected communities. Second, MWF designs and builds toilets for communities to eliminate open defecation. Alongside these interventions, MWF educates and encourages behavioral changes towards proper hygiene practices which significantly contribute to overall wellbeing.
MWF reaches out to other marginalized communities through its Flagship Programs, namely Lingap, Ahon, and Health in our Hands. These programs are for public institutions and low-income communities that have less to no capacity to install their own stand-alone water supply system and are in-need of hygiene education.
MWF also serves through its Special Programs known as Agapay Tubig and Agapay Sanitasyon, which promote national development and immediately addresses our people’s needs in times of disasters and calamities.
Learn more about MWF programs in the Manila Water Foundation’s Web Page.