WATER QUALITY in parts of Manila Bay has improved with lower fecal coliform levels, according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
The Baywalk area, one of the main priorities in an ongoing rehabilitation project, registered a decrease in coliform level in all its nine key stations in the third quarter of 2021, DENR said in a press release on Wednesday.
At the Dolomite Beach, where artificial white sand has been spread as an attraction, coliform level dropped to 1,700 mpn/100 mL (most probable number per 100 milliliters) from a geomean of 1.6 million mpn/100 mL in Sept. 2020.
“It’s high time that we totally alter our habits on waste disposal as well as our attitude on taking responsibility for one’s actions. Our cleanup efforts will be in vain if these will not be sustained by the public, and especially by the new administration this 2022,” DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said in a statement.
In September, four key stations at the Baseco beach also reported a decrease in coliform level to 21,500 mpn/100 mL from an overall geomean of 145,000 mpn/100 mL in 2020.
DENR said the water quality improvement is due to solid waste management strategies, geo-engineering interventions, and compliance monitoring of establishments, among others, around the Manila Bay area.
A total of 50,618.94 cubic meters of garbage was collected from shorelines, waterways, rivers, and beaches during cleanup activities conducted from January to Sept. 2021.
The department is aiming to have the Dolomite Beach area, which has been reopened to the public with restrictions, fit for swimming within this month. — Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson