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Friday, April 19, 2024

QC organizes task force on El Niño

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IN anticipation of the impending intensification of the El Niño phenomenon, the Quezon City government has taken steps to alleviate its effects with the convening of the QC Task Force El Niño in January 2024.

Mayor Joy Belmonte has tapped assistant administrator for operations Alberto Kimpo to lead the task force and direct concerned city government departments to implement measures to mitigate the effects of El Niño.

“As part of our concerted effort to mitigate the effects of the El Niño phenomenon in the city, we will continue to implement several measures, from proposing water-saving facilities for infrastructure to forging partnerships with the private sector,” Belmonte said.

“We must take this recurring climate change phenomenon seriously as it poses great risks to the health and livelihood of our QCitizens,” she added.

In 2023, Quezon City became the first local government in the country to pioneer the use of treated wastewater as a water-saving initiative. Under the leadership of Mayor Joy Belmonte, the city government entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with Maynilad Water Services Inc. for the utilization of treated wastewater for various purposes such as cleaning of the city’s parks, public spaces, and gardening. Said tasks are currently being administered by the city’s Parks Development and Administration Department

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Belmonte said the City Engineering Department will also expand the installation of rainwater harvesting systems to cover more public facilities such as schools, hospitals, and multi-purpose buildings.

Presently, 119 such systems are operational in public schools across the city. Additionally, the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office monitors weather conditions and identifies water retention basins, while the QC Fire District has identified accessible water resources within the city in case of water shortages during fire incidents, the QC government said.

Complementing these initiatives, it said aggressive information and education campaigns on water conservation and the effects of El Nino on urban farms are being organized by the city’s Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability Department (CCESD) and Food Security Task Force (FSTF) respectively. CCESD also procured water tankers to support communities during drought periods, while the FSTF engages in continuous food rescue efforts to address food insecurity.

Further demonstrating its commitment to safer and sustainable water sources, Quezon City became a member of the C40’s Water Safe Cities Accelerator Network last year, joining 15 other cities worldwide. Through this network, cities pledge to safeguard the most vulnerable communities at risk of flooding and drought.

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