WATER consumers in Barangay Tejero will now enjoy longer service hours with the commissioning of a private well that supplies water to the Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD).
The Mactan Rock Industries Inc. (MRII) operated its new well in Barangay Tejero Monday, Nov. 18, 2019, after it was awarded a bulk supply contract by MCWD for 25 years to supply 3,000 cubic meters per day.
Initially, the well is delivering 300 cubic meters (cu. m.) per day to quickly address the water district’s need to supply water to its customers in the barangay who are getting lesser service hours due to the water supply shortage.
“Our immediate action is to increase the service hours by developing in-house wells or by bidding out bulk supply contracts to private suppliers in critical areas like Tejero,” said MCWD acting general manager Stephen Yee.
The water demand in Metro Cebu is estimated at 500,000 cu. m. per day, but MCWD produces only an average of 238,000 cu. m. per day.
Factors like population growth, economic and business opportunities and in-migration contributed to the fast increase in the water demand over the years in MCWD’s service area, which includes the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu and Talisay and the municipalities of Consolacion, Liloan, Compostela and Cordova.
Meanwhile, overextraction, nitrate contamination and saltwater intrusion contributed to the depletion and shutdown of a number of sources.
Starting August 2019, the MCWD lost over 20,000 cu. m. per day due to various problems encountered by its private water suppliers and the effects of the dry spell.
Aside from areas with intermittent supply, which the MCWD is addressing with water rationing and water delivery through trucks, there are areas with still available supply but with lesser service hours.
The MCWD has short-term, medium-term and long-term solutions to the water supply shortage. Medium and long-term solutions include small-scale desalinated seawater plants and a major desalinated seawater plant for Mactan Island as well as the Mananga and Lusaran dams.
Among the short-term solutions is the development of new wells in affected areas.
It commissioned in-house wells in Barangays Lahug and Sambag 1 and will develop at least 30 more. It also revived wells that were earlier shutdown due to contamination as part of its denitrification program.
The MCWD also launched two others operated by MRII and is bidding out more supply contracts apart from amending existing ones to increase the volume of water being delivered by its existing private