City septage project worked on
Completion and approval of two ongoing studies on the city’s septage and related matters are awaited before said projects are implemented. This was disclosed by Baguio City Technical Assistance Team on Septage Management members Lyn Almario and Amede Ferre in a workshop conducted for concerned city personnel recently.
Andy Peal, an independent water and sanitation consultant is currently studying ways to provide Baguio with citywide, equitable and inclusive septage desludging; while Abhay Kantak, of Risk and Information Solutions Independent, is looking at the finance and tariff side, or recovery of cost of service and equity for both sewerage and septage.
A sanitation social preparation study shall also start soon with another feasibility study; the Baguio Resilient City Tourism Project which is developed by Egis. The later study is done with financing support from the Asian Development Bank (ADB). It focuses on sewer network and rehabilitation and expansion in order for the existing sewage project to process raw septage from 8,600 to 12,000 cu. meter/day.
These were presented in a meeting at the Baguio Sewage Treatment Plant where discussions revolved around improvement of sewage/septage service, planning for treatment, and in a more detailed aspect: containment, collection, transport, disposal, treatment and reuse.
Accordingly, only 13% of Baguio residents connected to the North Sanitary camp sewage treatment plant avail of desludging processes. However, executive or legislative moves are seen to strictly enforce regular desludging by 2035 as shared or individual household sewerages are not emptied regularly present threat to health and the environment.
The country and the ADB are accelerating sanitation for all Asian countries and the pacific with an action plan which commenced in 2021. The short term action plan is for this year up to 2025, medium term from 2026 to 2035, and the long term plan from 2036 to 2050, as financed by the ADB once approved.
In a related study of Manila utilities, a survey is done for individual households and community or sharing sewerage facilities, and charge for desludging is either done separately or included in water bills.
Other matters that need to be looked into include location/citywide desludging concerns, land banking and massive information and education campaign. Matters which need to be looked into: location of citywide desludging, land banking, massive information and education campaign, commitment of time and resources as to accepted sanitary service, and the need for working examples of the desludging programs. – Julie G. Fianza