The Features of the City Sta. Rosa City, with a 2010 population of 284,670 is a rapidly transforming peri-urban area 30 kilometers south of Mega- Manila. Its physical and social landscape is characterized by expanding industrial complexes and the emergence of gated communities and their associated high-end malls replacing what used to be agricultural lands. Commercial districts are rapidly growing Major Manila-based academic institutions are now establishing extension campuses in the area to get away from the extremely dense Metropolis. At the same time, traditional rurban districts are themselves facing transformation, as first-generation settlements are becoming more urbanized. The city is also now home to a large resettlement community of urban poor migrants from Mega Manila.
The Study Sites BarangayPop’nHHNo. of HH in Sample No. of KII No. of FGD Description Aplaya14,1723,1493063Coastal Barangay Caingin18,6084,1354063Coastal Barangay, but with an interior population of migrants from the city Pooc33,5447,4543063Interior Barangay but close to coast Pulong Sta. Cruz 19,2774,2843063Interior Barangay and far from coast Sinalhan19,0824,2403063Coastal Barangay Total104,68323,2621603015 Total for City 284,67063,2601603015 % of Total for City 36.8 100.0
Details of Focus Group Discussions BarangayDateGroup 1 Women Group 2 Men Group 3 Mixed WomenMenTotal Sinalhan May 24, 3013 55235 Aplaya May 24- 25, 2013 55235 Caingin May 30, 2013 55235 Pooc May 31, 2013 55246 Pulong Sta. CruzMay 30, 2013 36325
Sources of Water Most drinking water are bottled and commercially bought Other sources are from communal or private wells Small number from pipes either from community- managed tanks, or from water service provider
Social Capital Source of support in times of crisis is kinship, and not formal state institutions Women are seen as the one having more responsibility to link with support systems Women are also more active in community-based organizations than men
Experience of Water Stresses BarangayFloodWater ShortageWater Contamination MF T MF T MF T Aplaya1215 27 10 1 35 8 Caingin1819 37 45 9 139 22 Pooc98 17 12 24 74 11 Pulong Sta Cruz 31 4 1011 21 46 10 Sinalhan1513 28 21 3 86 14 Total 57 56 113 29 29 58 35 30 65
The problematic water institutions A pluralism of formal and informal water-distribution institutions relying solely on deep-well drillings. The private local water service provider supplies mainly the middle and lower classes. On the other hand, the gated communities, high-end malls and industrial complexes have their own independent deep wells and distribution systems. While the local government of the city is able to monitor the extraction behavior of the private local water service provider, the massive extraction of water by the independent users having their own deep wells are unfortunately not monitored.
The crisis scenario Elements of a crisis Inequality in exposure to regulation Projected rapid depletion of the water reserves, Geo-political reality that the recharge zones for the aquifers are outside the boundaries of the city Issue of social justice and equity for exposure to burdens, benefits and risks/hazards The sectors depending on the “privileged” water institutions relying on owned or independent deep wells are also those that are relatively, at least in the short run, immune from climate change-induced water stresses, such as floods, shortages and contamination While the relatively poorer informal settlers, some of whom are beyond the reach even of the regulated water service providers, are the ones who have to contend with episodes of severe floods and water shortages, and the risk of water-borne illnesses. This has potential class and gender-differentiated implications as well.
The Challenges The unregulated extraction of water by these “privileged” water institutions has been identified by a WWF study to be the major driver for the projected water shortage in the near future, some of which are now being felt by poorer communities living in the periphery of industrial and commercial complexes. The institutional and political responses required to handle this scenario is a challenge considering that the “culprits” are also considered as the ones that currently contribute a lot to the political economy, even as there is also a recognition by the city administrators that water is an important development resource How do you deal with a situation where there is a “transboundary” dimension
Limitations Instead of limiting the study area to just one site, we expanded it to six barangays—resource limitations (time, budget), transaction costs
Opportunities We have a very cooperative LGU partner The diversity of the sites can only but increase the reliability and validity of findings from qualitative data gathering
Things that need to be addressed The status of our embedded researcher