Maynilad's Wastewater Management Facility Tour

Do you ever wonder what happens to the water that we use everyday? The water that we flush out of our toilets? Where do we dispose them? Does it go directly to the estero? Does it mean I'm flushing out my poops to the river everyday? A lot of those questions are answered when we visited Maynilad's Wastewater Management Facility in Paco, Manila.

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You see, as of 2015, there are 100M Filipinos already. 100 million! 100 million people who take a bath everyday. And since we are Filipinos, we take a bath twice a day! 100 million people who poops. 100 million people to feed so it means we are washing the dishes for 100 million people who eats 5 times a day. Imagine the amount of water we consume every single day!

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Yes, according to the studies, 80% of the water we consume turns into wastewater. What if all of those wastewater would go directly to our bodies of water? The estero? The rivers? Imagine the pollution! What will happen to the next generation?

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Our visit to Maynilad's Wastewater Management Facility gave me hope!

I was actually shocked na meron na pala tayong mga ganitong facilities here in the Philippines. Maynilad built several wastewater treatment facilities that aim to protect the environment and the health of the communities living near the estero.

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Wastewater treatment is a process that converts wastewater (or those super dirty, cannot be used water) into clean water that can be used again or could be safely disposed to the estero.

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Our tour started with a briefing by Sir Bong, the head engineer of Maynilad's Wastewater Management Facility. He explained the different types of wastewater treatment, the importance and why they opted for that type of technology in the Paco area. According to him, madami na daw wastewater treatment process and so far Maynilad has adopted several of those. The one in Paco is a technology from Japan, if I'm not mistaken.

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Basically, Maynilad collects the wastewater from the sewer and sometimes from our septic tanks and brings them to its treatment facilities. The wastewater is then filtered and cleaned.

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There are several filtering machines on the facility. According to Sir Bong, one of their major issues are the solid wastes that comes with the wastewater kasi nakakasira sila ng machine. So yes, if you flush your napkins on your toilet, nakikita po yun ni Sir Bong and nafifilter nila yun! Kadiri diba?

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The filtered water would then be treated para maalis ang mga dumi. They use several processes and technologies to make sure that all the wastes are removed from the water.

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And this is the "finished product". Yes! From the pusali-like water na malamang may poops and all kadiri stuff, eto na sya ngayon! After all the filtering and treatment!

Those water are then used in cleaning the streets, they are donated to the fire trucks para magamit pag may sunog, they are donated sa MMDA pandilig ng halaman.

So far, the Philippines doesn't allow the use of treated wastewater for public consumption so don't worry, di po binabalik ng Maynilad sa mga gripo natin ang treated wastewater. Hehehe!

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You see, I grew up in Paco, Manila. Estero de Paco is right on our backyard. And it was disgusting! The pollution. Sobrang nakakadiri. Think of something yucky, and you'd definitely find it there! And the smell! Everytime it rains, sooobrang nakakasuka yung amoy. No wonder a lot of the kids in our neighborhood suffers from respiratory disease and skin disease. Specially those who live very near the estero.

And then several years ago, ex-DENR secretary Gina Lopez started out cleaning the estero and transforms the estero in Paco. The photo above was taken during our visit at Estero de Santibanez in Paco, Manila. You can now find fish on the estero. Di na din sya mabaho. Malayong malayo na sa kinalakihan kong estero. And Maynilad has been helping the community sa pagbuhay sa estero because they built sewer system near the estero so all the wastewater are collected, filtered and treated even before it reaches the estero.

Nakakatuwa makinig kay Ate Angie who heads the cleaning of the estero. According to her, she also grew up in Paco and it has been her life-long dream to clean up their estero and now, because of Maynilad and the River Warriors (the people who cleans the estero and Pasig River), her dream finally came true.

And since ayan na nga! Malinis na! The community is also doing their part in maintaining it. Together, they help clean the estero. They manage their waste and make sure na hindi sila nagtatapon ng dumi sa estero. Sobrang nakakatuwa!

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Maynilad is also trying to educate people in wastewater management. That's why they would organize site tours (like this one) and talks to inform the public.

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Grabe talaga! This tour is really an eye-opener for me. I was with Ate Yssa during the tour and my 11 year old niece sure learned a lot. At home we are already doing our part in helping our environment pero mas na-inspire kami na tumulong because of what we saw. Grabe! May pag-asa pa talaga!

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And us parents should really do our part to help Maynilad. Para naman di sila gaano mahirapan!

How can we help? Here are some stuff that we do at home:
  1. Our toilets do not eat tissues and napkins and diapers! Do not flush them! Remember, nakikita sya nila Sir Bong. Nakakahiya po. Plus it might clog your toilets, nakakadiri po!
  2. Do not dispose used oil on the drain. These oil could solidify and then you'll have oil build-ups on your drains and they are not easy to clean. Plus, it's hard to treat wastewater with oil.
  3. Dispose your trash properly. Segregate. Re-use. Re-cycle.
  4. Conserve water. Nakatipid ka na, nakatulong ka pa sa environment.
  5. Clean your septic tank every 5-7 years. Did you know that Maynilad offers septic tank cleaning at no extra cost every 5-7 years to all their customers? Maynilad really does help us clean our wastewater. You just have to request on their office and make sure that your septic tank opening is accessible.
  6. Do not rant if you see Maynilad digging on our highways and streets. Naku! I am guilty of this. I would always get mad at Maynilad kasi hukay sila ng hukay tapos ang tagal tagal pa ng mga projects nila. Traffic! But then I learned that their projects took more time to finish because they have to dig deeper to make sure that the wastewater is properly collected and that hindi tatamaan pag may construction. Imagine nga naman pag nabasag ang wastewater collectors nila, ambaho nun! Sorry na Maynilad. Di na po mauulit.
  7. Spread the news. Yes. Share it with your friends, educate them. This is exactly why I'm blogging about this. People should know and understand this. So we could all take part in building a better nation, a better world for our kids.
How about you guys? What are you willing to do to help save our environment?

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