Province of Albay approves Mayon dredging plans

The Philippines’ Sangguniang Panglalawigan of Albay – the Province of Albay (SPA) has approved a resolution allowing the governor to enter into a contract with a private company to dredge heavily silted river channels.

Board member Dante Arandia, chairman of the committee of environment and infrastructures, authored the resolution that immediately got the approval of the majority member of the SPA.

Arandia said that they passed the resolution so that removal of the volcanic debris sitting in channels and gullies at the foot of Mayon could be carried out immediately before another typhoon would wash down more loose materials.

Albay will be accepting bids from interested parties for the clearing operations once guidelines are in place, said the Province.

“We need to implement this removal of volcanic materials at the channels at the foot of Mayon the soonest time possible before another disaster looms,” Arandia said.

There will be no clearing done in areas where quarrying operations have stopped as requested by the mayors, said the Province. Quarrying works have ceased in Guinobatan and Legazpi City.

Cedric Daep, chief of the Albay Public Safety and Emergency Management Office, said that periodic and post-typhoon dredging could be carried out at the Mayon channels to avoid these from becoming fully silted.

“We have to dredge these materials from time to time and when typhoons loosen volcanic materials during strong severe weather disturbances so that their directions are only confined inside these channels,” Daep concluded.

Photo: Watermaster