Press Release on SSMNA's Opposition to the New Centennial Water Source Project
Elizabeth Carranza – 0920-9684982
Environmental Group Slams the Centennial Dam Project on Indigenous Peoples Sunday
October 12, 2014, Manila – Save Sierra Madre Network Alliance (SSMNA), a multi-sectoral network of indigenous peoples groups, non-government organizations, grassroots communities, faith-based groups, academe and individuals working for the conservation and protection of Sierra Madre Mountain Range, strongly condemns the New Centennial Water Source Project of the Aquino administration.
“We celebrate Indigenous Peoples Sunday today. In solidarity with our indigenous brothers and sisters, especially those residing in the Sierra Madre Mountains, particularly within the Provinces of Rizal and Quezon, we the members of the Save Sierra Madre Network Alliance slam the construction of the Centennial Dams!” declared Elizabeth Carranza, chairperson of SSMNA.
“Kaliwa Dam and Laiban Dam which are the two components of the New Centennial Water Source Project have no Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) from the IPs. Both have no Environmental Compliance Certificate as well,” pointed out Carranza.
Kaliwa Dam, as the President mentioned in his SONA is one of the 7 Public-Private Partnership (PPP) programs that he has signed. The project was approved by NEDA on May 29, 2014 and has been opened for bidding last week. The 62 meter high concrete-face rock filled dam (CFRD) with a capacity of 600 million liters per day (MLD) and with a projected cost of Php 18.72 billion will be constructed in Kaliwa River, Barangay Pagsangahan, General Nakar, Quezon. It will inundate a watershed area of 9, 700 hectares affecting about 1, 465 families.
Laiban Dam will be a 113 meter high CFRD with a capacity of 1,800 MLD and a projected cost of Php 25.60 billion. It is planned to be constructed in the Kaliwa River, Barangay Laiban, Tanay, Rizal. The project will inundate 28,000 hectares of watershed affecting about 3,708 families.
“The entire project is a threat to our remaining prime forests in Sierra Madre and its biodiversity. It disregards the basic right of the present and future generations to a healthy and balanced ecology,” Carranza added.
Carranza also summons the Filipino people: “My dear Filipino brothers and sisters, let us unite ourselves in Saving Sierra Madre and our remaining forests from destructive mega projects such as Kaliwa Dam and Laiban Dam! We don’t need new dams; they are not the ones supplying us with water. We need to restore the true source of clean water and clean air. We need to restore our forests!” -end