Nga-a Naga Baha’ Sa Inyo Banwa?

The Root Cause Of Flooding In The Urban Center And How It Can Be Mitigated

By Henry Libo-on

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Materials used or quoted here are not the property of the writer and the Earthniversity. We highly acknowledge that.  Thanks. 

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In the beginning, there was a land where grasses, trees, and plants grow abundantly.  There were rivers, streams, brooks, creeks, and other bodies of water that were on this piece of land. Then people came to establish their settlement on this land.  They built homes, schools, markets, churches, buildings for the use of government, commercial establishments and offices, among others. They also built road networks and dug canals that served as drainage for water used in the village as well as water brought by the rain.  The drainage was built in strategic areas of the land and the drainage system dumps its water into the rivers and finally the sea.

As the life of people improved, they bought cars and other motor vehicles that created a need for the village to concrete the road so that the cars can travel smoothly. In the beginning, the rainwater flows into the drainage as smoothly as it could be and the areas of the road which were not cemented absorbed the rainwater as quickly as it poured.

Many years passed, and high rise buildings were constructed.  Not only a few but many. Some of these buildings were even constructed above the creeks and streams without thought of its long-term effects on the village.  These buildings were occupied by people who also used water which will ultimately be going to the drainage to be emptied to the rivers and the sea.

Businesses flourished and several thousands of people were in the central business district, the malls, the offices, the restaurants, entertainment areas and on the road, among others.  The presence of people was accompanied by the presence of garbage. Every person visiting the village proper is consciously or unconsciously disposing of a certain amount of garbage such as paper, plastic cups, and water bottles, and others. 

Every day a certain amount of garbage was also scattered on the village’s road and that sometimes found their way into the Drainage. For several years this situation had been observable around the Village that most people also questioned the lack of discipline among its population. 

So, the village leaders hired cleaners to maintain the cleanliness of the roads and other places in the village. But the problem persisted. 

Then on an unexpected day, the rain fell.  It was heavy rain that lasted for a day. The rainwater has nowhere to go because the land had been covered with cement, a cemented road, a cemented parking area, cemented sidewalks, etcetera and so on and so forth.

The rainwater cannot also flow through the drainage system because these were clogged with plastic and other solid waste materials.  Most drainages were also covered with mud, sand or soil thus blocking the flow of rainwater. 

The drainage system was as old as the village.  Because of old age, the drainage system was not properly repaired and maintained and thus became unserviceable. The village leaders tried to repair the drainage system but they only do the repair in one area and forget the next line of drainage.  When they continue with the repair and maintenance of the drainage system, the village leaders made repairs in another part of the village forgetting the last line of the repaired drainage system.  

The rainwater will always find a way to flow back to the sea.  But it cannot properly flow to the creeks and rivers because the drainage system was also filled with garbage that blocked the natural flow of the rainwater. If the rainwater continues to flow through the repaired drainage, the rainwater will stop in the next clogged drainage. 

Because of the modernity of society, some human settlements constructed perimeter fence around their settlement thus blocking the natural flow of rainwater to the river.  Most areas of these settlements were also cemented, their roads, their sidewalks, even their yards thus eliminating the absorption of the rainwater to the ground.

With these events unfolding in the village, the people were surprised if not shocked that a few hours of rain resulted in floods. The rainwater has accumulated on the roads where people and vehicles pass.  In some areas of the village, the rainwater reached the waist level and in other areas of the village, the water reaches the knees of people. 

Cars and people were trapped in the floods. In some areas of the village, homes were damaged, appliances were broken, and the worst case of all, some lost their loved ones in the floods.

A few hours of rain resulted in the “birth” of new rivers all over the village that made the people angry at their village leaders for their lack of planning and implementation of the appropriate Flood Control and Drainage Program where billions of taxpayers money had been allocated for that purpose. 

And then it dawned upon them that their Village had several major rivers that can serve as Water Catchments when heavy rain pours. But where are they? Of course, they realized that these big rivers had been the dumpsites of the Villagers’ garbage and other wastes. Thus, clogging the rivers. The garbage that stayed in the river for a long time had become soft that caused siltation and too much mud in these riverways. 

So, who’s to blame? The Villagers? The Village Leaders? 

Some Villagers complain that the Drainage Improvement Project has become a “milking cow” for the corrupt Village Leaders. Other villagers believe that the Village Leaders are not competent to solve the problems of the Village.  On the other hand, some Villagers argue that the Village Leaders do not want to solve the problem so that they can implement more programs and projects thus requiring huge funding and in the end, the Village Leaders can amass big wealth through Corruption. 

In the end. what is the root cause of flooding in the urban center? Is it the Incompetence of the Village Leaders to find the best strategy to solve the problem?

Why does flooding occurs most of the time in the “concrete jungle” but less often in the residential areas where there are less cemented roads?

Why does flooding occur when there are big rivers, creeks, and streams that can serve as rainwater catchments? What happened to these rivers and creeks? Perhaps, the Villagers should check with their Local Leaders how the Zoning Ordinance, Environmental Compliance, as well as other Legislations or Laws have been implemented in their Village. Thus, something has to be done to mitigate the Flooding in the Village. 

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So, let us check the literature about flood control and see how the Villagers can learn from this.  We selected the article published by WAVIN, a “Dutch manufacturer of plastic pipes for drainage and water supply purposes”. The company is based in Zwolle, Netherlands.  Their published article is entitled “10 Measures To Prevent Urban Flooding”.

Before we proceed to the List, this writer/researcher, and Earthniversity would like to emphasize that we do not own the discussion hereunder presented. We acknowledged WAVIN as the sole source of this information or article.  Thank you.

Here are the 10 Measures To Prevent Urban Flooding by WAVIN. 

  • Create a ‘sponge city’. This concept has become very popular in China, a country that has seen the rate of urban flooding more than double in recent years. According to Kongjian Yu, the Dean of Peking University’s College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, “a sponge city is one that can hold, clean, and drain water in a natural way – using an ecological approach.”  So, rather than funneling rainwater away, a sponge city retains it for its own use, within its own boundaries. The uses include: irrigating gardens and urban farms, recharging depleted aquifers, replacing or replenishing the water used to flush toilets, and processing it so that it can be clean enough to use as drinking water. Arcadis, who incidentally is one of Wavin’s strategic MEP customers, has been appointed principal consultant for China’s Sponge City Project in Wuhan, the first of 16 cities to be used as beta sites in an initiative spearheaded by the Central government. The world will be watching and waiting to see how this new approach to stormwater management will pan out.

Hereunder is the link about the topic. Source: Business Insider at

China is building 30 ‘sponge cities’ that aim to soak up floodwater and prevent disaster

yan park 2

The photo shows the Yanweizhou Park in Jinhua, eastern China. Source: Business Insider at  (Leanna Garfield, November 10, 2017). 

  • Green roofs/rooftop gardens. Green Roofs that are covered with vegetation by their very nature absorb rainwater and help to mitigate flooding, They have become very popular across Europe. The benefits, as they relate to water, are straightforward: for the building owner, it’s a stormwater management tool; for the community, it reduces stormwater runoff; and for the environment, it prevents combined sewer overflow, neutralizes the acid rain effect and removes nitrogen pollution from the rainwater.

10 measures to prevent flooding: green roofs

Green Roof at Culembor, The Netherlands.  Photo credit WAVIN at 

  • Create flood plains and overflow areas for rivers. There was a time when floodplains covered large stretches along European rivers. Today, because of urban sprawl, less than half remain. There is a movement to restore these floodplains because of their significant role in flood protection, water management, and nature conservation. Essentially, what floodplains do is retain and absorb water, thereby shielding nearby towns from the effects of heavy rainfall by towns from the effects of heavy 

The photo shows the Floodplain at Isle of Wight, the United Kingdom following a 1 to 10-year flood. Source: WAVIN at

  • Separating rainwater from the sewer system. To improve water management and protect the sewer from damage cities are beginning to revamp their underground pipe and drainage systems – by separating rainwater from the sewer system. The separation enables the wastewater treatment plant to function properly, without it being overburdened by large quantities of stormwater.

10 measures to prevent flooding: separate sewer from rain water with Wavin pipes

The photo is sourced from WAVIN at

  • Install water infiltration and attenuation systems.  Nothing says rainwater management like a sustainable water attenuation and infiltration solution. With the Wavin attenuation and infiltration systems like Q-BicQ-BB, AquaCell and our latest product, Q-Bic Plus you can create underground tanks quickly and easily. Wavin units are designed for use in locations where there are heavy traffic loads and where local groundwater levels are high. The new unit is based on a modular concept that only uses side panels where they are really needed in an infiltration/attenuation tank. is lightweight and can be clicked together, without the use of connector pins or tools, which greatly increases installation speed. Made from virgin polypropylene, it is supremely robust and can withstand extreme loads.

10 measures to prevent flooding: Infiltration and attenuation tanks by Wavin - Q-Bic Plus

The photo shows the men working on attenuation and infiltration tanks. Photo credit: WAVIN at

  • Keep the sewer system clean, so it can do its job.

    It seems like an obvious measure, but sewer systems can clog up with waste, debris, sediment, tree roots and leaves.  The more traditional sewer pipes have a tendency to rust and corrode, compounding the problem. Wavin’s plastic sewer pipe systems and Tegra manholes never corrode and are easy to clean and inspect. 

    10 measures to prevent flooding: keep the sewers clean! In the picture: Wavin Tegra 1000 G2 Manhole - installing lower Ladder Bracket

The photo shows the Wavin Tegra 1000 G2 Manhole – installing lower Ladder Bracket.  Source: WAVIN at  
  • Sustainable drainage: permeable pavement, sidewalks, and gardens.

    In some urban areas, green space is considered a luxury. On the ground and on rooftops, there is so much concrete. Concrete is not permeable. It does not absorb rainwater. It blocks it and redirects it to the drainage systems which, in turn, often become clogged and then the water overflows into the streets and sidewalks. Unchecked, this will cause flooding. The concept of sustainable drainage makes perfect sense. As part of environmental initiatives that are underway in Europe and across the globe, the recommendation is that impermeable surfaces be replaced with permeable materials such as grass and gardens.  This will allow the rainwater to drain into the soil. The process, known as infiltration, also serves to sustain plant life.

10 measures to prevent flooding: Sustainable drainage: permeable pavement, sidewalks and gardens 

This photo shows how to do Sustainable drainage: permeable pavement, sidewalks, and gardens. In the picture; half-open pavement with grass. Source: WAVIN at

Once again, Earthniversity emphasizes that we do not own the ideas, discussion, and photos, among others.  We fully acknowledged WAVIN as the source of this information which is cited in this presentation.  We consider WAVIN as experts in this field so we quoted their work here to help growing cities and towns or villages with their problem on Flooding and Drainage System improvement. 

  • Hope for the best, but plan or the worst.

Despite best rainwater management practices, homes and buildings may still be subject to flooding. As an extra precaution, retrofitting your home so as to minimize damage and/or injuries is a smart (and proactive) project.  Some measures include raising electrical outlets and sockets higher on the wall, waterproofing the building or home, ensuring that the windows and doors have weatherproof seals, and replacing MDF or plasterboard with more durable materials.

  • Improve flood warning mechanisms.

    Properly conveying advance warnings of impending storms and floods will not only give people the opportunity to be proactive in preventing damage to their property, but it will also save lives. In Europe, initiatives like this flood early warning system and dike monitoring are in progress to overhaul the manner in which natural disasters, such as flooding, can be accurately assessed and when (and how often) warnings should be communicated. State-of-the-art global forecast systems and early warning mechanisms are being finetuned, so as to “create an operational tool for decision-makers, including national and regional water authorities, water resource managers, hydropower companies, civil protection and first-line responders, and international humanitarian aid organizations.” (The European Commission – Joint Research Centre(JRC).

Improve flood warning mechanisms

Photo credit: WAVIN at  Earthniversity does not own this photo but thanks WAVIN for making this available on-line.  Earthinversity does not own any ideas being discussed here but acknowledged its source as WAVIN at  We consider WAVIN as experts in the field of flooding mitigation so we presented these ideas here to help our readers who are facing Flooding in their cities, towns or villages.  Thanks.

  • Take action!

We can’t just leave it up to the government, municipalities, environmentalists or urban planners to put an infrastructure in place to prevent urban flooding. We – each of us – must make it our personal responsibility to adapt to climate change. Whether it’s collecting rainwater or building a garden on top of our roofs, it’s imperative that we take the steps necessary to be part of the rainwater management solution. 

According to the European Environment Agency, “Annual flood losses can be expected to increase fivefold by 2050 and up to 17fold by 2080.” The EEA released a report on the need for climate change adaptation in Europe. The fact is that preventative measures need to be put into place sooner, rather than later. As for Wavin, we will continue to play a leading role in the development and production of forward-thinking, sustainable stormwater solutions – to diminish the challenges of urban flooding and do our part to adapt to the reality that is climate change.    

  • If the Village has several riverways, these can be utilized as water catchments. Engineering works should be done by experts.
  • Vacant land can also be utilized as water catchments.  Again, Engineers or experts in this work should be tapped.
  • Sidewalks, Gardens, and other spaces around any building or structures in the Village must construct permeable pavements.  This will enable the rainwater to be absorbed by the soil and thus lessening the volume of floodwater. 
  • Building owners must be required to adopt a Green Infrastructure Program which is making Gardens on the Rooftops of their Buildings and other Structures.
  • Residents of the Village must be encouraged to practice “Rain Harvesting” by catching the rainwater and placed them on big containers that can be used for watering the plants, flushing the toilets, laundry and even bathing.
  • Other projects that can help prevent rainwater from accumulating in just one place. 
  • Finally, the Villagers observed for so many years that the Engineering Team and the Village Leaders seem to have teamwork to commit fraud and corruption.  The residents of the village saw how the engineering team dig the road that was repaired about a year ago. Their explanation was they are going to construct the drainage. How on earth will this happen that they will construct the drainage when it appears that the area is in the middle of the road? Where was the last line of drainage that was built a few years ago? Is that a continuation of the newly built drainage? The people knew that it doesn’t look like it is.
  • The Villagers complain that the Engineering Team and the Village Leaders seem to have a Teamwork to commit fraud and corruption.  To the residents, this is clear as the sun.
  • The Villagers knew that their Leaders had been serving them for a long time, how come that they did not bother to clean up the many rivers in the Village to improve the flow of rainwater to the sea?
  • The residents knew that the Village Leaders cannot make an alibi that they do not know how to do it or need an expert to make a study on how to improve the drainage system of the Village. Why? Because the residents and some village leaders were involved in the production of several volumes of documents on the Feasibility Study on Drainage Improvement and Flood Control. What happened to these studies? Why is there a need to spend millions to make another study? Is corruption a part of this scheme? The Villages were aghast.
  • The construction boom that the Village Leaders were proud to talk about needs a second look from the point of view of the Village land use and zoning. Why was the construction of some tall buildings allowed to sit on “living” creeks or streams? What happened to the laws on the Environment? Who prepared their environment study and who approved their ECC’s or Environment Compliance Certificate? 
  • How about those subdivisions? Why were they allowed to construct a perimeter fence that covered the natural flow of rainwater to the creek or river? Whose fault is this, the residents? Who holds the implementation of the Law? Isn’t it the Village Leaders? So, why blame the residents of this flop in governance?
  • There is still time for the Villagers to improve the quality of life in this Village.  Perhaps, the Villagers should be aware that placing incompetent people to the job does not make their Village a Livable Village after all.
  • Finally, we are not experts on Flood Mitigation but good observers of how things should be done properly. When the Roman Empire constructed their roads, bridges, and aqueducts, the Romans do not have a college or a master’s degree in Engineering. But they built those roads, bridges, and aqueducts that withstood the test of time. The Egyptians were not graduate in Engineering but they built good infrastructures and even the Pyramids.
  • We are living in a modern world, so to speak but the Villagers knew that you do not dig the newly repaired road to construct drainage. You plan what you want to do and do it systematically. The Villagers knew that the builders are not Romans but the people knew that the builders are college degree holders. Don’t create a fraud of yourselves. 
  • This writer and Earthniversity thank our References and sources of information on how to mitigate urban flooding.
  • We hope you can improve on this by adding your own knowledge.  
  • We hope this Village can correct the mistakes in governance that their Village Leaders perpetrated.
  • Have a nice day.
  • 10 MEASURES TO PREVENT URBAN FLOODING as suggested by WAVIN will inspire all the Stakeholders in every Village, Town, and City to think of the ways in which Flooding can be mitigated.

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  • The link here is Wavin 10 Steps to prevent urban flooding.

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This researcher and Earthniversity do not claim ownership of this article and the ideas presented here.

The 10 Measures To Prevent Urban Flooding is taken from the article of the same title published on the website of WAVIN through  

We thank WAVIN through for sharing this article “10 Measures To Prevent Urban Flooding”.

We would also like to acknowledge Leanna Garfield of Business Insider for her article entitled “China is building 30 ‘sponge cities’ that aim to soak up floodwater and prevent disaster”.  Source:

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About WAVIN.

According to Wikipedia and I quote:

“Wavin B.V. is a Dutch manufacturer of plastic pipes, mainly for drainage and water supply purposes. The company was officially founded on 5 August 1955, its name deriving from water and vinyl chloride. The company provides plastic pipe systems and products for tap water, surface heating, and cooling, soil and waste, rainwater, distribution of drinking water and gas and telecom applications.

The company is headquartered in Zwolle, Netherlands and operates in 25 European countries. Via its central export organization Wavin Overseas, the company has a network of agents and licensed partners in Asia, Australia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and North America. The Group also has a facility in Foshan, China.

Due to the common use of Wavin products, the name has become genericized in some parts of Ireland to refer to any manufacturer of orange-colored drainpipes[citation needed]. The company operates in three locations in Ireland, with the main manufacturing and distribution plant in BalbrigganNorth County Dublin, and additional offices in Lisburn and Cork.[1]

Wavin’s own Technology and Innovation Centre (Wavin T&I), employs more than 50 people to develop new products and systems with local Wavin companies. Products for the European market include the “smartFIX” push-fit fitting, the Tempower surface heating and cooling product, Tegra manholes and inspection chambers and the SiTech low noise in-house soil and waste system.”

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1. 10 Measures To Prevent Urban Flooding by Wavin at  Source:

2. “China is building 30 ‘sponge cities’ that aim to soak up floodwater and prevent disaster” by Leanna Garfield, November 10, 2017 Source:

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March 9, 2020.

Researched by Henry Libo-on.

x – x – x – x- x – x – x – x

Just an update. Today is August 17, 2020, and I discovered that another tool which can help in solving the problem of Flooding in a community is by conducting a Strategic Planning Workshop to be attended by all Stakeholders.

When the results of this StratPlan will be implemented it could help in the implementation of programs and projects that could help solve the problem of Flooding in a community. These programs and projects are going to be expensive. Is your community ready to spend its financial resources to solve flooding?

The problem is when pol pol liticians are not decisive to do this because they have other priorities to spend the money of the community. When this happens, the flooding continues. 

I would like to greet my avid readers from all over the world, Don Charisma, mikesteeden, masonmacias, oliverbuckleys, Mounzer, nathanfrenchs, austinschaefer, thebestfoodart, and many others. Stay safe everyone and enjoy the Summer.


Reviewed on November 15, 2020.


The world famous island of Boracay was closed from the public upon the order of Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.  From April 26 up to the time this article was written, a multi-sectoral group have joined efforts to clean up the island.  This video provided by RTVM or the Radio TV Malacanang, a government media agency, will give you a bird’s eye view of what has happened on Boracay since the time it was closed to the public.  Here’s Ms. Margaux “Mocha” Uson, Assistant Secretary, Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) for the report.

Source:  RTVM, Radio TV Malacanang Facebook Page.

Map of Boracay.   Source:   or

Source:  or allboracay,ru


Geography of Boracay Island

(Source: wikipedia)

Boracay Island is located off the northwest corner of Panay Island, and belongs to the Western Visayas island-group, or Region VI, of the Philippines. The island is approximately seven kilometers long, dog-bone shaped with the narrowest spot being less than one kilometer wide, and has a total land area of 10.32 square kilometers.

South-facing Cagban Beach is located across a small strait from the jetty port at Caticlan on Panay island, and the Cagban jetty port serves as Boracay’s main entry and exit point during most of the year. When wind and sea conditions dictate, east-facing Tambisaan Beach serves as an alternative entry and exit point.[34] Boracay’s two primary tourism beaches, White Beach and Bulabog Beach, are located on opposite sides of the island’s narrow central area. White Beach faces westward and Bulabog Beach faces eastward. The island also has several other beaches.

White Beach, the main tourist attraction is about four kilometers long and is lined with resorts, hotels, lodging houses, restaurants, and other tourism-related businesses. In the central portion, for about two kilometers, there is a footpath known as the Beachfront Path separating the beach itself from the establishments located along it. North and south of the Beachfront Path, beachfront establishments do literally front along the beach itself. Several roads and paths connect the Beachfront Path with Boracay’s Main Road, a vehicular road which runs the length of the island. At the extreme northern end of White Beach, a footpath runs around the headland there and connects White Beach with Diniwid Beach.

Bulabog Beach, across the island from White Beach, is the second most popular tourist beach on the island and Boracay’s main windsurfing and kiteboarding area.

Boracay is divided for land use and conservation purposes into 400 hectares of preserved forestland and 628.96 hectares of agricultural land.[35][36][37][38][39][40]  (Source: Wikipedia)



(Source: Wikipedia)

Partly because of its wind and weather patterns, tourism in Boracay is at its peak during the amihan season (which starts in September or October and ends sometime in May or June). During amihan, the prevailing wind blows from the east. Boracay’s main tourism area, White Beach, is on the western side of the island and is sheltered from the wind. During the Amihan season, the water off White Beach is often glassy-smooth. On the eastern side of the island, hills on the northern and southern ends of the island channel the Amihan season wind from the east onshore, onto Bulabog Beach in the central part of the island’s eastern side. This makes the reef-protected waters off that beach relatively safe[52] and ideal for scuba divingwindsurfing, and kiteboarding / kitesurfing.

In June 2011, it was reported that Megaworld Corporation, a real estate development group led by Andrew Tan had earmarked PHP20 billion to develop tourism estates “featuring an integrated, master-planned layout and world-class resort offerings and amenities” in Boracay and Cavite. The planned Boracay project, Boracay Newcoast, involves four hotels with 1,500 rooms, a plaza, and an entertainment center.[53] 

Leisure activities available on or near Boracay include horseback riding, scuba divingdiving helmetsnorkelingwindsurfingkiteboarding, cliff diving, parasailing.

Boracay is the site of an 18-hole par 72 golf course designed by Graham Marsh.[54] In addition, as of 2010, Boracay has in excess of 350 beach resorts offering more than 2,000 rooms ranging in quality from five-star to budget accommodation.[55] In addition, Boracay offers a wide range of restaurants, bars, pubs, and nightclubs.

landmark natural rock formation, Boracay’s Rock, juts prominently directly in front of Willy’s Beach Resort. (Source: Wikipedia).


Fauna   (Source:  wikipedia)

At least three species of flying foxes has been recorded to inhabit Boracay namely the giant golden-crowned flying fox (Aceradon jubatus),the giant fruit bat (Pteropus vampyrus), and the small flying fox (Pteropus hypomelanus). Their population is concentrated on the northern side of the island in Barangay Yapak where the hunting of bats was made illegal through a local ordinance.[47]

According to the Coastal Ecosystem Conservation and Adaptive Management (CECAM), a study led by the Japan International Cooperation Agency conducted from 2010 to 2015, noted a 70.5 percent decrease of Boracay’s coral cover from 1988 to 2011. The study attributed the worse drop in coral cover from 2008 to 2011 to the 38.4 percent increase of tourist arrivals combined with poorly monitored snorkeling activity in coral rich areas.[48][49]The Boracay Foundation Inc. (BFI) made efforts to remedy the situation by launching a “refurbishment” program for the corals. In 2017, the BFI claims the number of corals in Boracay increased from 15 to 20 percent since 2015 due to its project.[50]

According to the Department of Tourism of the Philippines, there are a recorded 1,725,483 visitors to Boracay in 2016. In 2015, there were 250 thousand people who visited the island. Assuming the average length of stay of tourists to Boracay is 3 days, there are 14,182 tourists in Boracay daily as of 2016 adding to the 33,109 official population of the island.[56] According to Malay municipal records, more than 2 million tourists visited the island in 2017.[51]  (Source: Wikipedia)


Source:  (the Wikipedia)

Boracay has been experiencing an increased coliform bacteria population since the 1990s which contributed to a 60 percent decline in tourist arrivals in 1997. Although a potable water supply system, a solid waste disposal system, as well as a sewage treatment plant which began operation in 2003,  were installed to remedy the insufficient sewage and septic conditions in the island, environmental concerns regarding coliform bacteria persisted due to noncompliance of some business establishments in the island.[30]

In 2004, only 51 percent of hotels and restaurants in Boracay, and 25 percents of all households were connected to the island’s central sewage system. In 2005, Boracay was declared a “special tourism zone”. In April 2006, Arroyo gave the PTA administrative control over Boracay, to be exercised in coordination with the provincial government. In 2009, Boracay Island Water Co. (BIWC), won a contract to improve the supply of potable water and install an efficient sewerage system.[30]

Boracay has experienced abnormally high algae growth since February 2015, due to sewage being dumped into the waters surrounding the islands.[30] In early 2018, 50 to 60 percent of all establishments in Boracay were compliant to the Clean Water Act of 2004 according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.[51] 



2018 Closure  (Source: Wikipedia)

Due to worsening environmental conditions in Boracay, President Rodrigo Duterte in February 2018 said he plans to close the resort island which he described as a “cesspool”. He has instructed Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Roy Cimatu to resolve the issue.[32] In a cabinet meeting, President Duterte ordered the full closure of the island, for six months effective April 26, 2018, to rehabilitate and resolve the environmental issues surrounding Boracay.[33]  (Source:  Wikipedia) 



Earthniversity would like to thank the Radio-TV Malacanang for their video about “Boracay: One Month After Closure” which is reported by Assistant Secretary of PCOO, Ms. Margaux “Mocha” Uson.

We would like also to acknowledge our sources of information about Boracay Island, the Wikipedia.  Complete citations were made regarding the Facts and Figures about Boracay as taken from The Wikipedia.


Earthniversity does not own the video posted here as it is the property of RTVM, the Radio-TV Malacanang, a Philippine Government office under the Office of the President.  The Facts and Figures stated herein have been taken from the article about Boracay published at The Wikipedia.

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As of this writing, Boracay Island is still undergoing rehabilitation.  This activity includes cleaning up, removal of illegal structures, improvement of roads and waterways, as well as constructions of water treatment facilities and other requirements needed for a more sustainable island-resort tourism project.

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Photos of Boracay were provided by Henry Libo-on, Blogger at Touristang Pobre blog site.




The Magic of Two: How Two Surfers Cleaned The Ocean Floor.

This is a brief story of how two (2) surfers cleaned the ocean floor of garbage.  Their story will surely inspire us.

Earthniversity considers this initiative as one of the World’s Best Practices which other local government units globally can practice in their local levels.  As what we used to say here on Earthniversity,  “Everyone Thinking Globally And Acting Locally”.

Thanks to Hashem Al-Ghaili for sharing this video on youtube.  Most importantly, thanks to 4Ocean for sharing this idea of concern to clean up the oceans of the world.  Cheers!

Benham Rise: Part of the Philippines’ Exclusive Economic Zone.

(Source: TV 9, News & Current Affairs, youtube)

Facts and Figures about Benham Plateau.

According to the Wikipedia,

The Benham Plateau, also known as the Benham Rise, is a seismically active undersea region and extinct volcanic ridge located in the Philippine Sea approximately 250 km (160 mi) east of the northern coastline of Dinapigue, Isabela.

Under the Philippine Sea lie a number of basins including the West Philippine Sea Basin, inside of which is located the Central Basin Fault (CBF).[1] The Benham Plateau is located in the CBF and its basement probably is a micro-continent.[2] Several scientific surveys have been made on the feature to study its nature and its impact on tectonic subduction, including one about its effects on the 1990 Luzon earthquake. The area is a territory of the Philippines which was claimed, as part of its continental shelf, which was then lodged with the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf on April 8, 2009 and was approved by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in 2012.[3]  (

Geological features[edit]

The map shows the features of the Philippine Sea Plate.

Benham Rise is a submerged extinct volcanic ridge located at 16 degrees 30 minutes N, 124 degrees 45 minutes E off the coast of Luzon, with the size of about 250 km in diameter and rises over 2,000 meters (2 km.) above the sea floor, from below 5,000 meters (5 km.) below sea level to above 3,000 meters (3 km.) below sea level. Its area is close to the Benham Seamount, located at 15 degrees 48 minutes N, 124 degrees 15 minutes E. The precise location is somewhere near the east of the Philippine Trench and near the south of the East Luzon Trench, both of which absorb the subducting force of thePhilippine Sea Plate under the Philippine Mobile Belt,[4] a collage of large blocks of that crust that amalgamated prior to the collision of the Philippine Sea Plate with the Eurasian Plate.[5]

The origin of the landform, along with a fellow landform, the Urdaneta Plateau (a remnant of mantle plume), is identified in one study as at least five sequences of propagating rifts, probably triggered by mantleflowing away from the mantle thermal anomaly.[6] Its presence of the landform disrupts the continuity of this region (known as the Philippine-East Luzon Trench) by continuously colliding with the Sierra Madre mountain range of eastern portion of the island of Luzon. Though it is generally thought that the Philippine Sea Plate is being subducted under the Philippine Mobile Belt, under the rules of tectonic subduction, there appears to be a resistance to this because of the presence of the landform, and instead, the plate is being displaced into the northern portion of Luzon to the west.[7][8]  (

The geophysical features of the plateau may have been the result of an early Miocene collision event between the Benham Rise and the eastern margin of Luzon, which may have also allowed the inception of the NW striking strand of the Philippine fault.[9] These forces may have impacted the shape of the island of Luzon because of the basaltic sea floor resisting the subduction that may have also cause the bending of thePhilippine Fault.[10] The active basins in Central Luzon, which trace an asymmetrical V shape, is the best place to observe recent tectonic evolution of the fault system.(


The landform is presumably named after Admiral Andrew Ellicot Kennedy Benham (1832–1905) by American surveyors who were the probable discoverers of the geological feature. He was a United States Navyofficer, who served with both the South Atlantic and West Gulf Blockading Squadrons during the American Civil War.[11] There has been speculation in the scientific community about the nature of the landform. Following the major 16 July 1990 Luzon earthquake, scientists reconsidered their fault models and decided it likely that Benham Plateau has similarly displaced the Philippine Fault System to the west.[12] After analysing older models such as that of Pinet and Stephan (1989), scientists reconsidered their fault models. They thought that it is highly likely that the Benham Plateau is still displacing Central Luzon and the Philippine Fault System to the west, which may have had an impact in causing such a catastrophic earthquake. The 20 second to 50 second wave in the 1990 quake that developed a new east-west sub-fault was so strong that it terminated disastrously at the city of Baguio in Benguet, Cordillera. Several scientific surveys, conducted between 2004 and 2008, collected hydrographic data that determined the morphology of the seabed in the region. Additional data from international bathymetric surveys and an analysis of international research projects were collected to support the findings.[13]    (

Benham Rise has been part of the culture of ancient Filipinos. Ancient Catanduanes people have fished and roamed the area long before the colonial era. In fact, it is celebrated in Catandunganons’ folktales, legends and poetry. Today, large percentage of fish caught by Catandunganon comes from Benham Rise. Its local bicol term is called Kalipung-awan (means loneliness in an isolated place).  (

Philippine claim[edit]

Territorial waters of the Philippines. The Benham rise is located directly east of Luzon.

Despite its proximity to the archipelago, the plateau was previously not included in the territory of the Philippines. On 8 April 2009, the Republic of the Philippines lodged a partial territorial waters claim with the United Nations Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf in relation to the continental shelf in the region of Benham Rise.[14] It was submitted as part of petition expanding the archipelago’s baselines and exclusive economic zone through a law that also included other claims involving disputed territories of the Kalayaan Islands (Spratly Islands) and Scarborough Shoal. Although the landform, in itself, is not disputed, the petition still received some criticism inside and outside the country because of its controversial nature.[15] According to the government’s claim, based on a set of guidelines by the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf, the area satisfies the 350-mile constraint line since the outer limits of the continental shelf are located landward of the constraint line, which is located 350 miles from the baselines where the measurement of the breadth of the territorial sea begins.[13] (

The Congress of the Philippines enacted Republic Act No. 9522, also known as the Archipelagic Baselines Law, which is the basis of the claim. According to the document the region is bounded by the Philippine Basin on the north and east, and by Luzon on the west and south. It asserted that, according to scientific data based on seismic, magnetic, other geological features, the Benham Rise is an extension of the Philippines’ continental shelf. In summary, the baselines, the basis used for delineating the maritime territorial and jurisdictional zones (including the continental shelf), conform with the requirements of the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).[13] The claim is only a partial claim since the law that allows the Philippines to expand its territorial boundaries also includes islands in theSouth China Sea.  (

UN Decision[edit]

The Philippines filed its claim for Benham Rise in 2008 in compliance with the requirements of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). The UN has officially approved the claim in April 2012.[3][16][17][18]

(Source: Rappler hosted by Maria Ressa, youtube)


According to the report mentioned by Pia Hontiveros, Benham Rise is a 13 million hectare sea bed off the coast of Aurora Province, Luzon, Philippines, that may potentially contain steel producing minerals and natural gas.


UPDATES dated March 15, 2017…the following news item taken from the website of CNN Philippines revealed that China respects the rights of the Philippine Government to its claim over the continental shelf at Benham Rise.  It might be recalled that the continental shelf of the Benham Rise is contiguous to the mainland of Luzon, thus making it a rightful undersea “territory” of the Republic of the Philippines as approved by the United Nations in 2012.  Here’s the Chinese press release and available on-line through CNN-Philippines’ website…here is the link…thank you.


UPDATES  dated March 21, 2017.

The Philippines’ Legal Advisor based in The Hague, Netherlands, in the person of Paula Defensor-Knack stated on her FB page this opinion on Benham Rise, hereunder:

“This is the correct opinion on Benham Rise. I made it for Die Hard Fans of MDS so they know what to say when they meet an ignorant opponent online…
Benham Rise is not disputed territory. It is underwater, the ridge of a dormant volcano. The Spratlys on the other hand is disputed territory, it is a reef/ low elevation maritime feature. The ownership of the Spratleys is disputed because the arbitration tribunal could not rule on ownership of maritime features. No one owns Benham Rise but since it is continental shelf, it is in our economic zone though the continental shelf can be beyond the EEZ.”  (Exclusive Economic Zone)

Updates on January 24, 2018.

On May 16, 2017, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed the Executive Order No. 25 renaming the Benham Rise to Philippine Rise.  We would like to request our readers to refer back to the opinions of Atty. Paula Defensor-Knack, the Philippines’ Legal Advisor to The Hague, The Netherlands, regarding Benham Rise.  Her opinion is stated in the previous update.  It says:

“Benham Rise is not disputed territory. It is underwater, the ridge of a dormant volcano. The Spratlys on the other hand is disputed territory, it is a reef/ low elevation maritime feature. The ownership of the Spratleys is disputed because the arbitration tribunal could not rule on ownership of maritime features. No one owns Benham Rise but since it is continental shelf, it is in our economic zone though the continental shelf can be beyond the EEZ.” (Exclusive Economic Zone).

Earthniversity shares this opinion and therefore it is safe to conclude that the area which is within the Philippines’ Exclusive Economic Zone can be “guarded”  by the Philippine Government as its “protected food supply exclusive zone”.

In one occasion, China asks the permission of the Philippine Government to conduct research on Benham Rise, the area that is beyond the Philippines’ EEZ.  Benham Rise or the Philippine Rise is “not a disputed territory”, according to Atty. Paula Defensor-Knack.

In one instance, the Philippine Government had asked China to allow the fishermen to fish in the West Philippine Sea to which China agreed.  This area is a disputed territory because of the land mass appearing on the sea.  Many countries claim islands and islets of this disputed area.


The Earthniversity does not own the articles, facts and figures stated in this post as well as the videos posted herein. The facts and figures about the Benham Plateau or Benham Rise had been taken from the Wikipedia.  The link is herein stated for your reference.  (


Thank you to Rappler’s Ms. Maria Ressa for the video they posted on youtube.

Thank you to TV 9 News and Current Affairs and Pia Hontiveros for the video they uploaded on youtube.

Thank you to The Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia.

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  • For discussion purposes only.

Updated January 24, 2018.

Converting Ocean Waves For Power

After harvesting solar energy to produce power or electricity, another method of producing electricity is through Kinetic Wave Power or simply Wave Power which is converting ocean waves into electricity.

Source: Hashem Al-Ghaili. Thank you.

Converting ocean waves into electricity has been done many years ago. Wikipedia had an elaborate discussion on this topic.  The video is taken from the post of Hashem Al-Ghaili. Here is the discussion about Wave Power from Wikipedia.


The first known patent to use energy from ocean waves dates back to 1799, and was filed in Paris by Girard and his son.[13] An early application of wave power was a device constructed around 1910 by Bochaux-Praceique to light and power his house at Royan, near Bordeaux in France.[14] It appears that this was the first oscillating water-column type of wave-energy device.[15] From 1855 to 1973 there were already 340 patents filed in the UK alone.[13]

Modern scientific pursuit of wave energy was pioneered by Yoshio Masuda‘s experiments in the 1940s.[16] He has tested various concepts of wave-energy devices at sea, with several hundred units used to power navigation lights. Among these was the concept of extracting power from the angular motion at the joints of an articulated raft, which was proposed in the 1950s by Masuda.[17]

A renewed interest in wave energy was motivated by the oil crisis in 1973. A number of university researchers re-examined the potential to generate energy from ocean waves, among whom notably were Stephen Salter from the University of Edinburgh, Kjell Budal and Johannes Falnes from Norwegian Institute of Technology (now merged into Norwegian University of Science and Technology), Michael E. McCormick from U.S. Naval Academy, David Evans from Bristol University, Michael French from University of Lancaster, Nick Newman and C. C. Mei from MIT.

Stephen Salter’s 1974 invention became known as Salter’s duck or nodding duck, although it was officially referred to as the Edinburgh Duck. In small scale controlled tests, the Duck’s curved cam-like body can stop 90% of wave motion and can convert 90% of that to electricity giving 81% efficiency.[18]

In the 1980s, as the oil price went down, wave-energy funding was drastically reduced. Nevertheless, a few first-generation prototypes were tested at sea. More recently, following the issue of climate change, there is again a growing interest worldwide for renewable energy, including wave energy.[19]

The world’s first marine energy test facility was established in 2003 to kick start the development of a wave and tidal energy industry in the UK. Based in Orkney, Scotland, the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) has supported the deployment of more wave and tidal energy devices than at any other single site in the world. EMEC provides a variety of test sites in real sea conditions. It’s grid connected wave test site is situated at Billia Croo, on the western edge of the Orkney mainland, and is subject to the full force of the Atlantic Ocean with seas as high as 19 metres recorded at the site. Wave energy developers currently testing at the centre include Aquamarine Power, Pelamis Wave Power, ScottishPower Renewables andWello.[20] (Source: Wikipedia)

Modern technology[edit]

Wave power devices are generally categorized by the method used to capture the energy of the waves, by location and by the power take-off system. Locations are shoreline, nearshore and offshore. Types of power take-off include: hydraulic ram,elastomeric hose pump, pump-to-shore, hydroelectric turbine, air turbine,[21] and linear electrical generator. When evaluating wave energy as a technology type, it is important to distinguish between the four most common approaches: point absorber buoys, surface attenuators, oscillating water columns, and overtopping devices. (Source: Wikipedia)

According to Wikipedia, “Wave power is the transport of energy by wind waves, and the capture of that energy to do useful work – for example, electricity generation, water desalination, or the pumping of water (into reservoirs). A machine able to exploit wave power is generally known as a wave energy converter (WEC).

Wave power is distinct from the diurnal flux of tidal power and the steady gyre of ocean currents. Wave-power generation is not currently a widely employed commercial technology, although there have been attempts to use it since at least 1890.[1] In 2008, the first experimental wave farm was opened in Portugal, at the Aguçadoura Wave Park.[2]

Environmental Effects[edit]

Common environmental concerns associated with marine energy developments include:

  • The risk of marine mammals and fish being struck by tidal turbine blades;
  • The effects of EMF and underwater noise emitted from operating marine energy devices;
  • The physical presence of marine energy projects and their potential to alter the behavior of marine mammals, fish, and seabirds with attraction or avoidance;
  • The potential effect on nearfield and farfield marine environment and processes such as sediment transport and water quality.

The Tethys database provides access to scientific literature and general information on the potential environmental effects of wave energy.[91] (Source: Wikipedia)


The worldwide resource of wave energy has been estimated to be greater than 2 TW.[92] Locations with the most potential for wave power include the western seaboard of Europe, the northern coast of the UK, and the Pacific coastlines of North and South America, Southern Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. The north and south temperate zones have the best sites for capturing wave power. The prevailing westerlies in these zones blow strongest in winter. (Source: Wikipedia)

World wave energy resource map (Source: Wikipedia)


There is a potential impact on the marine environment. Noise pollution, for example, could have negative impact if not monitored, although the noise and visible impact of each design vary greatly.[7] Other biophysical impacts (flora and fauna, sediment regimes and water column structure and flows) of scaling up the technology is being studied.[93] In terms of socio-economic challenges, wave farms can result in the displacement of commercial and recreational fishermen from productive fishing grounds, can change the pattern of beach sand nourishment, and may represent hazards to safe navigation.[94] Waves generate about 2,700 gigawatts of power. Of those 2,700 gigawatts, only about 500 gigawatts can be captured with the current technology.[23]  (Source: Wikipedia)

Furthermore, the Wikipedia enumerated the following countries as implementors of the WAVE FARM or implementors of Kinetic Wave Power Projects to generate electricity. These are:


  • The Aguçadoura Wave Farm was the world’s first wave farm. It was located 5 km (3 mi) offshore near Póvoa de Varzim, north of Porto, Portugal. The farm was designed to use three Pelamis wave energy converters to convert the motion of theocean surface waves into electricity, totalling to 2.25 MW in total installed capacity. The farm first generated electricity in July 2008[95] and was officially opened on September 23, 2008, by the Portuguese Minister of Economy.[96][97] The wave farm was shut down two months after the official opening in November 2008 as a result of the financial collapse of Babcock & Brown due to the global economic crisis. The machines were off-site at this time due to technical problems, and although resolved have not returned to site and were subsequently scrapped in 2011 as the technology had moved on to the P2 variant as supplied to Eon and Scottish Power Renewables.[98] A second phase of the project planned to increase the installed capacity to 21 MW using a further 25 Pelamis machines[99] is in doubt following Babcock’s financial collapse.

United Kingdom[edit]

  • Funding for a 3 MW wave farm in Scotland was announced on February 20, 2007, by the Scottish Executive, at a cost of over 4 million pounds, as part of a £13 million funding package for marine power in Scotland. The first machine was launched in May 2010.[100]
  • A facility known as Wave hub has been constructed off the north coast of Cornwall, England, to facilitate wave energy development. The Wave hub will act as giant extension cable, allowing arrays of wave energy generating devices to be connected to the electricity grid. The Wave hub will initially allow 20 MW of capacity to be connected, with potential expansion to 40 MW. Four device manufacturers have so far expressed interest in connecting to the Wave hub.[101][102] The scientists have calculated that wave energy gathered at Wave Hub will be enough to power up to 7,500 households. The site has the potential to save greenhouse gas emissions of about 300,000 tons of carbon dioxide in the next 25 years.[103]


  • A CETO wave farm off the coast of Western Australia has been operating to prove commercial viability and, after preliminary environmental approval, underwent further development.[104][105] In early 2015 a $100 million, multi megawatt system was connected to the grid, with all the electricity being bought to power HMAS Stirling naval base. Two fully submerged buoys which are anchored to the seabed, transmit the energy from the ocean swell through hydraulic pressure onshore; to drive a generator for electricity, and also to produce fresh water. As of 2015 a third buoy is planned for installation.[106][107]
  • Ocean Power Technologies (OPT Australasia Pty Ltd) is developing a wave farm connected to the grid near Portland, Victoria through a 19 MW wave power station. The project has received an AU $66.46 million grant from the Federal Government of Australia.[108]
  • Oceanlinx will deploy a commercial scale demonstrator off the coast of South Australia at Port MacDonnell before the end of 2013. This device, the greenWAVE, has a rated electrical capacity of 1MW. This project has been supported by ARENA through the Emerging Renewables Program. The greenWAVE device is a bottom standing gravity structure, that does not require anchoring or seabed preparation and with no moving parts below the surface of the water.[56]

United States[edit]

  • Reedsport, Oregon – a commercial wave park on the west coast of the United States located 2.5 miles offshore near Reedsport, Oregon. The first phase of this project is for ten PB150 PowerBuoys, or 1.5 megawatts.[109][110] The Reedsport wave farm was scheduled for installation spring 2013.[111] In 2013, the project has ground to a halt because of legal and technical problems.[112]
  • Kaneohe Bay Oahu, Hawai – Navy’s Wave Energy Test Site (WETS) currently testing the Azura wave power device[113] (Source: Wikipedia)

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DISCLAIMER.  Earthniversity does not own the ideas discussed here.  Citation has been made as to the original source of these ideas on Wave Power.  The video is from a post by Hashem Al-Ghaili.  Thanks .


  1. The Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. The topic is Wave Power.
  2. Video is from the post by Hashem Al-Ghaili.