Innovative Water Supply Project Solves Woes of Remote Northern Luzon Barangay

“A WATERLESS locality” ever since, remote and upland Barangay Uli of the municipality of Dasol in Northern Luzon’s province of Pangasinan now finally enjoys steady supply of the vital resource on 24/7 basis for household and community needs, thanks to a project initiated by citizens’ groups, a corporate foundation and the local government unit together with the village’s officials and residents.

Dubbed “Uli Ram Pump Project,” the technology utilizes Ram Pumps which harness the natural kinetic energy of water flowing from a river in the locality and push up this water through a pipe and into a ferro-cement storage tank constructed in the barangay, with about 780 feet of elevation from the water source. A two-kilometer piping system connects the water to the communities within Uli through 11 water taps where the barangay residents get their daily supply. The ram pumps do not use fuel or electricity but run only on the water pressure from the river flow.

The project, initiated by citizens’ groups La Liga Policy Institute (La Liga), Earth Day Network Philippines, Inc. (EDNPI), and Alternative Indigenous Development Foundation, Inc. (AIDFI) in partnership with Coca Cola Foundation - Philippines and Dasol LGU, was started in February of this year, and is formally turned over today to Uli’s barangay council and residents for their own management, maintenance and sustaining.

On hand during the turn over ceremonies were Dasol Mayor Noel Nacar, EDNPI representatives Roberto Guevarra and Binggirl Clemente, La Liga Managing Director Roland Cabigas and Deputy Director Rachel Morala, and hundreds of residents led by Barangay Uli Chairman Edgar Rivera.

“Each of the two ram pumps used in this project has a generation capacity of about 54,700 liters of water daily to amply supply the needs of some 1,600 residents of the barangay,” Cabigas said.

“The project is part of a nationwide environmental program to install one hundred (100) ram pumps by 2013 in celebration of the Coca Cola bottling company’s 100th founding anniversary in the Philippines. The partnership endeavors to provide upland communities with accessible and reliable community water systems as it likewise aims to raise the awareness of upland communities on the importance of water and help them conserve and preserve this precious resource,” he added.

Meanwhile, the LGU of Dasol has committed local public fund in their current budget to finance reforestation and watershed development around the ram pump area to ensure sustainable supply of water and improve the town’s biodiversity.

The Ram Pump project is among several projects undertaken by La Liga in Dasol and other parts of Western Pangasinan. In the past two years, the development organization has implemented the Organikong Palayan project as well as initiatives for the localization of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). La Liga is also currently implementing here the Empowerment of the Poor Program aimed to enhance the participation of citizens in local planning and budgeting.

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