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SESAM to study Marikina Watershed

CheckdamChecking the check dams. The SESAM research team visited one of the 27 check dams of Anono River in Brgy. Calawis, Antipolo City, Rizal. Anono river is part of the Upper Marikina River Basin Protected Landscape (UMRBPL).


The School of Environmental Science and Management (SESAM) will conduct a study entitled “Determining the Impacts of the Vegetative and Structural Measures in Upper Marikina River Basin Protected Landscape (UMRBPL)”, which is located in Rizal Province, CALABARZON. This project funded by the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO)-Rizal, aims at providing a science-based information to ascertain that the interventions made are worth the funding and be able to determine the potential for enhancement and continuity.


Due to the current degraded condition of the Upper Marikina Watershed resulting from the continuous and careless resource use and practices over a long period of time, so many problems and issues came up in landscape. These are rapid urban development and increase in population and the consequent excessive and indiscriminate discharge of pollutants and wastes; improper land use management and increase in conflicts over land uses and allocation; rapidly depleting water resources and consequent conflicts over water use and allocation; and lack of capacity and resources of stakeholders and responsible organizations to pursue appropriate developmental solutions.


The project, which is led by Dr. Marisa J. Sobremisana, Assistant Professor, SESAM, said that the project will have a duration of one year with a training component for the sustainability of the initiatives. 


The project team already made a reconnaissance trip and initial survey of the biodiversity of the project site in the Municipality of San Mateo and City of Antipolo, Rizal. Re-elected Barangay Chairman Allan A. Abonio,  Barangay Calawis, Antipolo City, Rizal, said this study will help his community not only in protecting the watershed but will also protect themselves from hazards of environmental degradation. 


The researchers also visited check dams, cocomatting project sites and the National Greening Program (NGP) sites of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) last May 17 to 18, 2018.   


The study will have an impact assessment to be undertaken by phases. Among the intervention that will be given priority are impacts of check dams, cocomatting, bench terracing using vetiver grass and biodiversity. Quantitative measurements of the specific parameters will be able to determine the effectiveness of such projects. While the monitoring is being undertaken, preparation of research protocols or guidelines in conducting research activities necessary to support development activities shall be prepared as one of the outputs. These are necessary for continuous monitoring activities of the DENR.