The Watershed and Water Resources Research, Development and Extension Center explores the potential of recharging the depleting aquifer to meet the escalating water supply deficit in Baguio City and its surrounding suburbs.
Based on a study conducted by the National Water Resources Board in 2017, the City has experienced a deficit of 6.24 million liters per day (MLD) and 6.37 MLD of domestic water in 2015 and 2016, respectively.
This deficit is projected to escalate by 2025, 2030 and 2035 at 7.35 MLD, 7.82 MLD and 8.25 MLD, respectively. Such projection was based on the 15-year averaged (2020-2035) local population growth rate of 1.91% (PSA, 2021) including visitors and transients under a decreasing natural aquifer recharge scenario.
The City continues to grow with its tourism-based economy as the Summer Capital of the Philippines, and as the center of governmental/institutional services for the Cordillera region.
The project, titled “Development of Artificial Groundwater Recharge Facility for Flood and Drought Mitigation”, is one of the four (4) projects under a collaborative research program on mountain engineering for sustainable infrastructure and upland water security, which was funded by the DOST-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development.
The ERDB-WWRRDEC implements the project from March 2021 to February 2023 and has earned commitments of technical support from relevant stakeholder groups like the NWRB, DOST-PNRI, and MGB-CAR, among others.
Also, the LGUs of Baguio and La Trinidad, and the Benguet State University (BSU) co-implement the project by providing counterpart-funding, technical assistance, and land spaces for the Facility. The ERDB-LGU-BSU partnership was covered by a Memorandum of Agreement. Darwin A. Ablang/Alma B. Domingo