This rehab of the notorious river is part of SMC’s P95 billion road project. Through it, the company aims to dredge 600,000 tons of waste from Pasig River each year. Now, SMC has announced that preparations are already in full swing.
The company has already completed the bathymetric survey—a study of a body of water to determine its topography and underwater characteristics—of the river from the Pandacan area in Manila going upstream. The study has also continued to other areas, and SMC is now using its new marine echo sounder, a piece of hydrographic survey equipment.
“This is a very important environmental effort, and we want to do it right. Cleaning up the Pasig River has been a dream for many Filipinos, even our older generations, so we want to make sure our plan is strategic and effective,” said SMC president Ramon S. Ang. “While we will use science and utilize modern technology, this project can only succeed with the cooperation of all stakeholders.”
Ang also mentioned that a memorandum of agreement between SMC and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), with the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) as a signatory, is already being finalized. This will formalize the joint venture between SMC and the government agencies.
“We are grateful for the support of Secretary Roy Cimatu and Secretary Mark Villar. They will be key to making this project a success. Their expertise and ability to mobilize support from many stakeholders are vital to this initiative,” added Ang. “According to the DPWH, there have been no previous studies or dredging plans for the Pasig River near the Manila Bay. There were previous studies with JICA but that was for the area near the Marikina River. So this is a historic effort. With government and private sector working together, combining our efforts, resources, and technical know-how, I’m sure we will succeed in cleaning up Pasig River.”
Exciting times ahead, folks. SMC aims to complete PAREX by 2023, so we’re eager to see how much Pasig River itself has improved then. Your thoughts, readers?