GRI 416-1, 416-2
Ensuring public health through the delivery of clean water and proper sanitation.
Manila Water Laboratory Services commits to consistently provide accurate and reliable test results
Manila Water puts a high premium on safeguarding the health and safety of the general public, as well as its own employees, suppliers, and service providers. There are two means to achieve this end: ensuring the consistent quality of the water and wastewater services it provides and nurturing a culture of safety in the workplace including that of the supply chain.
Beyond the Company's consistent compliance to the Philippine National Standards for Drinking Water (PNSDW), Manila Water takes extra measures to ensure water safety throughout the value chain with the Company's Water Safety Plan, an extensive risk assessment, and risk management. East Zone, Laguna Water, Clark Water, and Boracay Water have secured the certification of their respective water safety plans while the remaining business units are awaiting the review and certification of the Department of Health.
To honor its commitment to safeguarding public health and safety, Manila Water constantly holds rigorous water sampling and testing procedures to ensure water quality, thus attaining 100% compliance with the Philippine National Standards for Drinking Water (PNSDW). To maintain this level of performance, the Company collected and analyzed 94,359 water samples from various points of the water system - raw water sources, treatment plants, reservoirs, and customers' taps. In 2021, there were no healthbased drinking water violations or significant exceedances recorded in bacteriological parameters.
Manila Water prides itself in having an excellent occupational health and safety record for its employees and supply chain. In 2021, the Company recorded 14,061,403 employee safe man-hours and 6,571,104 contractor safe man-hours. Several health and safety committees at the group, department, and facility levels monitor safety performance regularly and implement continuous improvement initiatives to address gaps and overlaps in processes. Health and Safety bulletins were also released through e-mails on topics such as occupational health and safety issues and practices, wellness tips, and treatment of serious and seasonal diseases.
Non-East Zone's health and safety committee were able to operationalize their online Environment, Health & Safety (EHS) and Hazard Identification (HIRAC) dashboards to carry out a uniform and consistent method for the reporting, identification, assessment, and significant evaluation and control of safety indicators. In addition, regular monitoring through the dashboards equips safety officers with a single source of reference in performing accident investigations and reducing critical hazards and impact.
Environment, Health & Safety (EHS) Dashboard
Hazard Identification (HIRAC) Dashboard
East Zone, Laguna Water, Clark Water, and Boracay Water secured Water Safety Plans approval
94,359 samples collected and analyzed
100% PNSDW Compliance
0 health-based drinking water violation
14,061,403 Employee Safeman hours
0 Employee Work-related Fatalities
0 Employee Lost Time Injury rate Online EHS and Hazard Identification Dashboard
operationalized for Non-East Zone
99% Covid-19 fully-vaccinated employees
Daily disinfection activities in all facility premises
SARS-CoV-2 Analysis in Wastewater to detect possible and emerging threats
Manila Water extends COVID-19 vaccination to its employees and their dependents.
In a bid to ease the impact of the COVID-19 virus, East Zone concessionaire Manila Water constructed a molecular laboratory for SARS-CoV-2 wastewater surveillance.
Pandemic Response and Readiness
When the pandemic struck in early 2020, Manila Water formulated a pandemic response plan to ensure the safety of its employees and customers, as well as continue the provision of clean water and proper sanitation. In 2021, work arrangements continue to be on a split team schedule to minimize physical interactions. Daily disinfection activities are still recurring in all facility premises, including offices, vehicles, common areas, and shared equipment. The Company has also extended free COVID-19 vaccination support to employees and five free dependents through the Ayala Vaccination and Immunization Program. To date, 99% of the Company's employees are fully-vaccinated against Covid-19.
In line with the national government's push towards eliminating the threat of the pandemic, Manila Water aims to leverage its wastewater surveillance data for rapid assessment of emerging threats and preparedness for a future pandemic. Asian Development Bank (ADB) has signified its support to the Company thru competency building of molecular laboratories such as training on the use of equipment, training on detection of Covid-19 thru wastewater-based epidemiology, knowledge sharing on molecular laboratory operation, and consumables for lab operation. To date, the pre-fabrication of the Smart House for the molecular laboratory has already started while the delivery of laboratory equipment is scheduled for March 2022.
Manila Water Laboratory Services Head Joy De Vera said that the, "project is part of the Company's COVID-19 response and is aimed to detect and quantify the SARS-COV-2 in wastewater using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) machines that are efficient in amplifying small segments of DNA or RNA. These data will be complementary to the current clinical testing and reports of confirmed positive cases."
Meanwhile, Manila Water Research & Development Head Emmanuel Jimenez underscored the key benefits of this project to communities. “Through this facility, they will have access to the game-changing technique and technology in tracking local outbreaks of COVID-19 or what is called 'wastewater-based epidemiology' (WBE). Also, data to be generated in this molecular lab can help communities formulate actions in mitigating COVID-19 in its early stages of emergence or re-emergence as WBE can detect the virus even before people show symptoms,” Jimenez said. He also added that since wastewater sample contains waste from numerous individuals, the community will have access to a cost- and time-efficient screening approach to determine the level of infection not only of COVID-19 but other possible emerging and future threats.