MANILA - The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will suspend quarrying operations in Rodriguez and San Mateo after rains easily triggered flash floods in the nearby Marikina City and other towns in Rizal and Metro Manila.
DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu said he will also order dredging in the river passing these areas to prevent water from overflowing and causing floods. He also urged communities to plant bamboos in the river banks to prevent flooding in the future.
"We will suspend muna 'yung operations ng mga quarrying dun sa area na 'yan. We'll be going to do dredging na lang nang mapalalim naman nang kaunti 'yung level ng bottom ng tubig kasi umakyat na e. Para hindi na masyadong mataas pagbaha dun," he said.
The weekend deluge left at least 2 people dead and another one missing, while displacing at least 50,000 residents in Metro Manila and nearby provinces, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council reported Monday.
Disaster officials said the heavy rains and flash floods over the weekend affected a total of 1,057,767 persons in 713 barangays in Regions 1 and 2, Calabarzon, the Cordillera Administrative Region, and the densely-populated Metro Manila.
Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro blamed the recurring floods in Metro Manila, including their city, to ecological imbalance due to failure to protect the environment. He said no disaster preparation was enough if nobody cared for the environment.
Aside from environmental protection, the Marikina mayor also appealed to the Department of Public Works and Highways to build pumping stations in the city that will complement efforts in dredging the river and building dikes.
-- Report from Kori Quintos, ABS-CBN News