Naboc River still choked with heavy metals; EMB XI Reports

11-21 naboc river still choked with heavy metals emb xi reports

The result of DENR-Environment Management Bureau’s (EMB) 3rd Quarter Water Quality Monitoring of the Naboc River exposes that said river still contains hazardous chemicals and heavy metals that exceeded the water quality criterion for Class C Waters.

The Naboc River in Monkayo, Compostela Valley has been a gold-mining spot since 1980s. The extraction of gold through mining has been entwined in the community since then. These mining activities generated toxic wastes that causes several detrimental impacts to the community- health hazards included and the now chemically-choked waterways of Naboc River.

The EMB XI continuously conducts monthly assessment of the river’s water condition through its eight (8) monitoring stations. These are established at Naboc River (at the mouth of the river, at the foot of Naboc Bridge, at the foot of NIA Dam and in approximately 50 meters upstream from the confluence of Naboc River & Tabaka River), and at its tributaries, Tabaka River, Buenas and Balite Creeks.

The recent assessment shows that most of the stations still contain high concentration of chemicals such as mercury and cyanide which could be attributed to the ore processing plants operations in Mt. Diwalwal.

According to the water criterion for Class C waters, the mercury level must conform with the 0.002 mg/L safety level but it alarmingly reached as high as 0.026 mg/L. For cyanide, it reached 6.796 mg/L which encompasses the 0.1 mg/L water criterion.

The river is also in high level of fecal coliform but is mainly due to the communities that are concentrated along the riverbanks and has no toilets and septic tanks.

The data gathered by the EMB serves as a reference for the DENR XI’s rehabilitation of the Naboc River. It is currently one of the department’s priority programs through its “Lihok Alang sa Naboc” work slogan. It is an operation that aims to clean up the river, reinforce mining regulations in Monkayo and to push hazard-free environment in the area.

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Environmental Warriors’ ideas laid through paper and lens

11-22 makakalikhasan contest winners

As the DENR XI believes in the power of youth’s profound and innovative ideas in matters of environmental protection, it once again conducted the “MakakaLIKHAsan” an Essay and Photo Contest. It is a two-day annual event that aims to earn the active participation and engagement of young environmental warriors through their piece of writing and photo material.

The essay writing revolves in the theme “One Planet. One Nation: Sustaining Green Actions for a Safer Climate.” to which, the New Corella National High School bagged the top place.

Its writer, Mary Chris D. Agarma, states in her piece entitled “Code Green: Diagnosing the Vital Signs of the Earth” that “we [people] are the leukocytes of the Earth and must work hand in hand as a nation and as a planet to protect the only home we have. The earth has long been diagnosed of a severe disease. Like treating chronic illness, necessary measures must be applied.” Strict implementation of environmental laws, reforestation and to look for other sources of renewable energy to not exhaust biofuel are among the writer’s recommendations.

The champion ended her piece with a diagnosis that the earth is “severely destructed, in need of immediate attention, care and restoration.”

For the photo contest, the Ateneo de Davao University which held the championship for two (2) consecutive years has once again bagged the top place. For this year, its entry was photographed by Anton Miguel Balagot with an engraved caption “Carbon Sequestration: A Quest for Life.”

Congratulations to all the participants- our young and creative environmental warriors and to their supportive coaches!

The DENR XI is looking forward to having you again.

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