Statistics from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) shows that the required water consumption for each person is 2 to 4 liters a day; and each needs 2,000 to 5,000 liters of water to produce daily food. If majority of the 658,000 households in Metro Cebu is poor, how can the residents access sufficient and potable water for a better quality of life?
Like Metro Manila, Metro Cebu has among the country’s greatest concentrations of households. For every 100 households, 24 are earning below Php 7,000. This magnitude of poverty is the primary consideration of the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) in implementing its Metro Cebu Poverty Reduction Program.
The five-year program aims to reach 15,684 households in 5 cities and 4 municipalities covering 105 barangays. Now on its third year, the program shall focus on livelihood and enterprise; education; health; environment; and organizational system. Part of this includes the installment of 2 potable water systems benefitting 200 households.
With the consequences brought by climate change, water supply is a major issue in Metro Cebu. According to the report by the Dutch-funded Central Cebu Water Resources Management through Integrated Development (Water REMIND) Project, Metro Cebu’s water supply will only last until 2030.
With this, PBSP is pursuing the rehabilitation, protection, and conservation of the Central Cebu Protected Landscape (CCPL). Moreover, PBSP makes sure that the coastal areas and marine waters in and surrounding Mactan and Olango islands are still able to support the livelihood of the fisherfolks and the local tourism industry in Cebu.
WHO and UNICEF expressed that “the world is on track to meet or even exceed the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for safe drinking water – to halve the proportion of people without access to safe water by 2015. However, even though we are on-track globally, 884 million people are still without access.”