|Region:||Pampanga, Bataan regions|
|Project Partners:||Philippine Association of Water Districts (PAWD)|
Mitigation of Groundwater Arsenic Contamination in Pampanga and Bataan Regions
The region of Pampanga lies in the central area of the Island of Luzon, Philippines. It is approximately 130 km north of Manila, part of the Manila Bay catchment area, and is important both for agriculture, fisheries, tourism and business. The central government is relocating its Departments to New Clark Town which is in Pampanga, and the region is served by Clark International Airport. Approximately 1 million people live in the region, of which 50% are connected to piped, deep well groundwater supplied by publicly owned Water Districts; the remainder use shallow communal wells, or are connected to small private sector operators.
Pampanga is also home to Mount Pinatubo. In 1991, it erupted an estimated 10,000,000,000 tons of magma and 20,000,000 tons of SO2, bringing vast quantities of minerals and toxic metals to the surface including arsenic. This is just one of many eruptions throughout the geological history of Luzon that deposited arsenic contaminated rock / lahar into the environment.
In 2014, the first reported cases of arsenic related health symptoms were recognized by the Pampanga Regional Department of Health (DoH) in the towns of Lubao and Guagua. The cause was verified as arsenic contamination in the drinking water. There was a Netherlands’ government delegation in the Philippines at the time, and the DoH requested assistance from the Netherlands in mitigating the arsenic problem.
For more information please contact:
Patrick Egan, Project Manager Cebu, the Philippines