Monday Sep, 23 2019 09:32:32 PM

DENR-12 ensures Sarangani Bay water safe

Climate Change/Environment • 07:15 AM Sun Aug 25, 2019
Khadija Bayam-Benpolok
The scenic Sarangani Bay

KORONADAL CITY – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-12) is closely monitoring the coastal waters of Gen. Santos City and Sarangani in compliance with the Philippine Clean Water Act.

Earlier, the DENR issued an administrative order that designated the Sarangani Bay Water Quality Management Area and the creation of its governing board.

The DENR 12, headed by Regional Executive Director Dr. Sabdullah C. Abubacar, CESO IV through Environmental Management Bureau EMB XII, headed by Regional Director Engr. Alex D. Jimenez closely monitors the Water Quality Management Area (WQMA) of Sarangani Bay.

In a recent Protected Area Management Board - SBPS Executive Committee meeting in Gen. Santos City, EMB 12 Senior Environmental Management Specialist (SEMS) Willie V. Loyola, emphasized the need to sustain efforts to secure Sarangani Bay’s water.

Forty sampling stations of WQMA were established covering General Santos City and the towns of Maasim, Alabel, Malapatan, Glan that compose the Sarangani Bay.

Loyola also stressed line bureaus conduct monthly monitoring basing from water body guidelines with primary parameters to be analyzed these are; Dissolved Oxygen, Fecal Coliform, Total Suspended Solids, pH, Temperature, Nitrate, Phosphate Oil and Grease Color. Loyola said, that in sea water, Temperature parameter rating is significant, that it doesn’t exceeds three degree celcius temperature difference, that any changes beyond will have a serious impact to marine life resources of Sarangani Bay.

Likewise, the Total Suspended Solids (TSS) and other primary parameters required in the latest standard provided by DENR DAO 2016-08 should also be maintained to ensure the quality of the water resource.

Initial monitoring showed there were excesses in Fecal Coliform, Dissolved Oxygen, Oil and Grease, and the Total Suspended Solids in SBPS and that these must be addressed immediately.

“EMB XII proposed that on parameters that have excesses, there is a need to conduct activities on proper hygiene and solid waste management in coordination with Department of Health DOH with the local government units concerned, industry monitoring, information, education and communication IEC campaign, and regular monitoring of operational quarry projects along rivers that discharge in Sarbay and in other water bodies of Sarangani and General Santos City,” Loyola said.

The WQMA was established to protect, through stakeholders partnership, the water body and its tributaries by keeping their water quality within the standards conforming to the water body’s classification or even improve the quality to higher classification. (Khadija Bayam-Benpolok)

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