Sunday, April 21, 2024

PBBM Touts High Dams As ‘Long-Term Solution’ To Water Woes


PBBM Touts High Dams As ‘Long-Term Solution’ To Water Woes


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President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. calls for the construction of more high dams as a “long-term solution” to the water supply problem, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) said Tuesday.

“Ang bilin po ng ating Pangulo at ito naman ang ating ginagawa sa ngayon, ang future solution natin diyan, ay magtayo ng additional dams (Our President’s directive, which is what we are doing right now, our future solution to that is to build additional dams),” NIA Administrator Eduardo Guillen said in a Palace press briefing.

According to Guillen, some of the existing big dams in the country, such as the Magat and Pantabangan are already aging and it is high time for the country to construct additional dams to address the problem of water supply and effectively manage water resources.

“Ang gusto po ng ating pangulo ngayon ay matayo tayo ng mga high dam para may pang long-term solution tayo. Sabi nga niya, ‘pag may high dam ka, meron ka nang flood control, meron ka nang irigasyon, meron kang power generation, aquaculture. Saan ka pa? So, ito po ang focus ng ating Pangulo (What the President wants now is for us to build high dams so that we will have a long-term solution. He said, ‘when you have a high dam, you have a flood control, you have irrigation, you have power generation, aquaculture. What more can you ask? So, this is the focus of our President),” he said.

According to Guillen, there are three to five big dam projects that the government is looking to finish before the President’s term ends in 2028, which include the Tumauini River Multipurpose Project in Cagayan Valley, the Panay River Basin in Panay Island, and other projects in the Ilocos Region.

These are on top of the more or less 20 medium-scale irrigation projects that the NIA aims to construct across the archipelago throughout the Marcos administration, Guillen noted.

The Irrigation chief also said that the agency continues to develop and construct solar-powered irrigation projects to help farmers at the so-called “tail-end areas” or those that have yet to be reached by the NIA’s irrigation systems.

The initiative is also in line with the NIA’s efforts to help farmers mitigate the effects of El Niño. (PNA)