Sustainability at Manila Water How we achieved full alignment of business, social and environmental goals.

In the early days of Manila Water’s existence, its Chairman Fernando Zobel de Ayala has articulated the often-quoted saying of “not a business to run, but a mission to fulfill”.  This has led to the crafting of the company’s Vision which states

“Our vision is to become a leader in the provision of water, used water and environmental services which will empower people, protect the environment and enhance sustainable development”

Thus, embedded into the company’s DNA are the three basic principles of Sustainability:  social inclusion, environmental sustainability and economic development.  This is further manifested in the company’s recently articulated mission which states

“Our mission is to create an exceptional customer experience in the provision of sustainable solutions vital to health and life.”

Consistent with the Ayala principles of not simply looking at the financial bottom line as a sole measure of business success, Manila Water reports on its measured impact to society, the environment and the economy.

Beyond adopting a corporate social responsibility framework as a social license to operate, the company treats  sustainability as the paradigm, a way to ensure continuity and enhance growth as it creates shared value for and with its stakeholders. Manila Water’s corporate social investments are nurtured through an affiliate foundation. To ensure continued operations and manifest  corporate responsibility , the company addresses business risks especially on aspects of environment, social safeguards and governance.  Most importantly, continuing innovation work ensures the alignment of the core and emerging businesses with what society needs for lasting impact – essentially the creation of shared value.

Consistent with its subscription to the idea of creating shared value, the company believes that growth cannot be achieved without ensuring the full engagement of  its various stakeholders – employees, customers, investors, regulators, suppliers, civil society and media – and the success of the sustainability journey can only be brought about through constant dialogue, engagement and partnerships with these stakeholders, resulting in a symbiosis of diverse interests which work towards common goals.  There are several mechanisms in place to get feedback from and to inform stakeholders of the latest updates in policies and operations of the company, as well as issues that need everyone’s attention.

The company believes that it is not enough to inform stakeholders of operational accomplishments alone, but to inform them of the risks that the company cannot manage by itself, and asks that its stakeholders also own and carry out their share in addressing the same issues that have impact on all parties.

Manila Water has long adopted a culture of operational excellence with particular focus on risk management and innovation.  Every risk item identified by the company – natural/physical, social, economic, financial, technical or regulatory -- has a corresponding mitigation plan owned by a risk champion, with the company’s core values as guiding principles.

The company understands that a competitive edge can only be realized through constant innovations in developing new approaches and products that address unmet needs and unsolved gaps, and realizing operational efficiency through new ways of doing things and adopting the latest applicable technologies. Not satisfied on doing things as they are, the company is committed to the principle of continuing improvement, as complacency is the formula for losing competitiveness.

Manila Water identified five focus areas of the core business in which social and environmental goals are aligned with business goals, resulting in the creation of Shared Value delivered at scale.

Manila Water puts a very high premium on sustainable development and inclusive growth and integrates these principles into its business processes.  Manila Water believes that the sustainability of its business is dependent on the communities that it serves, the environment that provides its resources, as well as the stakeholders who support its programs and provide valuable insights and feedback for continuing improvement. With this in mind, the company will address the needs of the communities, the environment and the economy, thereby creating and maximizing shared value.

Manila Water commits to:

  • Be an indispensable partner in  building communities in areas that we serve providing potable water, sewerage or sanitation services at reasonable rate
  • Develop self-sustainability of targeted communities by instituting capacity-building mechanisms and livelihood programs
  • Design and develop an environmental management system that would ensure continuing environmental compliance and sustainability of our operations
  • Develop, promote and implement programs that would nurture, protect and conserve our natural resources
  • Use climate change adaptation as an overall strategy for addressing operational and asset risks
  • Uphold service excellence and operational efficiency, and continuously see new business opportunities to strengthen the financial viability of the company, thereby maximizing shareholder value
  • Drive economic growth and development by constructing and managing best-in-class water and wastewater infrastructure, and helping small and medium enterprises strengthen and expand their business
  • Operate the business in a way that the health of our employees, service providers and the general public would be safeguarded
  • Value employees as our primary stakeholder by respecting their fundamental rights at the workplace, and providing opportunities for both professional and personal development
  • Adhere to the highest standards of corporate governance and observe responsible business practices across the organization
  • Ensure sustainability in our supply chain by communicating our policies to our vendors, and by encouraging them to adopt the same in the conduct of their businesses and to align their company policies and programs with the company’s sustainability thrust
  • Work closely with the communities, the government, civil society, businesses and other stakeholders to develop and implement programs that respond to important social needs
    Champion sustainability by educating and encouraging our subsidiaries, partners and other stakeholders to be socially and environmentally responsible

Manila Water puts a very high premium on sustainable development and inclusive growth and integrates these principles into its business processes.

This report is in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Sustainability Reporting guidelines core option. To further ensure relevance and consistency with globally recognized sustainability standards, this report is aligned with ISO 26000:2010.  The information contained in this report covers the period from January to December 2015.

The report covers all operating Philippine subsidiaries of Manila Water which include Metro Manila East Zone concessionaire of Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), Boracay Island Water Company (BIWC), Clark Water Corporation (CWC), Laguna AAA Water Corporation (LWC) and Cebu Manila Water Development Inc. (Cebu Water).

In accordance with the GRI G4 sustainability reporting guidelines which encourage a company to focus and report on what matters and where it matters, Manila Water has identified priority material aspects most relevant to the company, aligned with its Sustainability Framework, Key Performance Indicators, Business Efficiency Measures and the comprehensive Risk Dictionary of the enterprise.  These are continually and regularly validated through a series of focus group discussions with key stakeholders, the company’s sustainability council and the Management Committee.

Some identified relevant aspects in the list are not included in the GRI menu but are deemed of primary importance to the sustained operations of the company.  Each of these aspects are reported on with quantitative measures as much as possible.







  • Employment
  • Training and Education
  • Employee Engagement
  • Integrity and Anti-Corruption
  • Freedom of Association and  Collective Bargaining
  • Diversity and Equal Opportunity
  • Non-discrimination
  • Security Practices
  • Supplier Assessment for Labor Practices
  • Grievance Mechanism
  • Service Coverage
  • Service Reliability
  • Customer Service
  • Local Communities
  • Business Continuity
  • Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Response
  • Indigenous Rights
  • Public Policy
  • Compliance
  • Grievance Mechanisms for Impacts on Society
  • Water Sources
  • Non-revenue Water
  • Energy
  • Compliance
  • Effluents and Waste
  • Emissions
  • Environmental Education
  • Supplier Environmental Assessment
  • Environmental Grievance Mechanisms
  • Indirect Economic Impacts
  • Market Presence
  • Procurement Practices
  • Economic Performance
  • Water Potability
  • Occupational Health and Safety

Stakeholder Engagement

Engaging its stakeholders is an essential element of the sustainability commitments of Manila Water.  Stakeholders are a valued source of information that helps improve the company’s core services and develop new business opportunities.  Time has also proven that the stakeholders can be key allies in advocacy work to enable the business further and support other sustainability initiatives.  The issues and concerns relevant to each stakeholder group are noted and responded to through various engagements, ensuring active alignment of the stakeholders’ expectations and the company goals and values. The table below illustrates the company’s dynamic and symbiotic relationship of Manila Water with its stakeholders.

Stakeholder Group

Modes of Engagement

Issues /Areas of Concern


  • Meetings
  • Group-wide activities
  • HR Caravan
  • Email blasts, bulletins,  Agos online publication
  • Employee recognition program
  • Annual themed events
  • Ayala-wide sports programs
  • Employee survey
  • Training and development programs
  • HR  programs and policies
  • Compensation and benefits
  • Recognition of exemplary employee performance
  • Work-life balance/Work-life integration
  • Employee level of engagement
  • Talent management and succession planning
  • Competency development
  • Career development
  • Top-down communications
  • Quarterly visits of HR across various groups and departments
  • Recognition programs
  • Themed and sports events
  • Employee engagement survey
  • Employee volunteer framework
  • Competency-based trainings
  • Manila Water University
  • Local and international job assignments
  • Focus Group Discussions
  • Abot Kamay sa Barangay
  • Forum with community partners (known as Kasangga Days)
  • Public consultations
  • Public Information Campaigns
  • Social Media (Facebook & Twitter)
  • Manila Water website
  • Flyers and bill inserts
  • Lakbayan Water Trail Tours
  • Customer Service Hotline
  • Agos Magazine
  • Improvements in service quality
  • Billing concerns
  • Traffic inconvenience due to ongoing repair, pipelaying, and restoration works
  • Water tariff and other charges
  • Water and sewer connections
  • Desludging fees and schedules
  • Village right-of-way
  • Resolution of complaints within internal service level targets
  • Publication of notices of water interruption and other advisories in print media
  • Regular updating, announcements and bulletins through social media
  • Traffic management plans
Regulators (MWSS, CDC, TIEZA, Provincial Government of Laguna)
  • Regular correspondence and submission of reports
  • Meetings with regulatory offices / Kumustahan
  • Public consultations and forums
  • Site visits
  • Policy/Governance matters
  • Operational efficiency
  • Customer-service issues
  • Rate adjustments
  • Key Performance Indicators /Business Efficiency Measures targets
  • Financial matters (Return On Rate Base, Foreign Currency Differential Adjustment, Inflation Rate, Appropriate Discount Rate)
  • Prudency of investments
  • Submission of position papers and similar documents  
  • Participation in their various fora / meetings as participant or resource persons
  • Facilitation of rate rebasing exercise  
  • Compliance  
  • Business Plan submission
National Government Agencies
  • Compliance reports
  • Correspondence
  • Regular briefings and updates 
  • Toka Toka Advocacy
  • Lakbayan Water Trail Tour
  • Policy / governance matters
  • Alignment of programs with KPIs and Supreme Court continuing mandamus
  • Water Resource Management
  • Water Sector Policy
  • Right of way issues
  • Relocation of pipes affecting proposed projects
  • Alignment of infrastructure master plans
  • Compliance report submission
  • Alignment of information campaigns, desludging caravan, and other environmental projects
  • Submission of position papers and similar documents
  • Regular and close coordination on project planning and implementation
  • Partnership in Toka Toka advocacy
Local Government Units (LGUs)
  • Public consultations
  • Toka Toka Advocacy
  • Lakbayan Water Trail Tour
  • Regular correspondence
  • Participation in LGU events
  • Agos Magazine
  • Regular briefing sessions
  • Right of way issues
  • Alignment of work programs
  • Discussion on execution plans and schedules
  • Relocation of pipes affecting proposed projects
  • Requests for assistance
  • Continuous coordination and negotiation with LGUs
  • Coordination meetings for project update
  • Partnership in Toka Toka advocacy
  • Delivery of requested drinking fountains and volunteering on activities
  • Alignment of information campaigns
Private Companies/Corporations
  • Toka Toka Advocacy
  • Lakbayan Water Trail Tour
  • Membership in industry organizations
  • Alignments on disaster preparedness and response
  • Alignments on CSR initiatives
  • Regulatory policies
  • Partnerships on different sustainability projects
  • Joint policy papers on select regulatory issues
Supply Chain
  • Vendor accreditation
  • Vendor fora and conferences
  • Focus group discussions
  • Vendor accreditation criteria
  • Procurement processes and procedures, regulatory compliance requirements
  • Quality and compliance
  • Environment, occupational health and safety performance
  • Sustainability and social responsibility
  • Billing and payment to vendors
  • Performance evaluation
  • Implementation of vendor accreditation program
  • Hosting of vendor fora  
  • Updates in the supply chain organization
  • Discussion of new and upcoming projects
  • Roll-out of new procedures and policies
  • Discussion on vendor-related issues and concerns
Civil Society
  • Courtesy visits
  • Face-to-face meetings
  • Focus Group Discussions
  • Improvement in the socio-economic conditions of the community
  • Water service interruptions
  • Lack of proper hygiene in communities
  • Project partnerships
  • Water availability and watershed management
  • Kabuhayan Para sa Barangay  
  • Rehabilitation of water networks and services among public service institutions
  • Raising public awareness through Global Handwashing Day
  • Lingap programs  
  • Information campaigns
Finance Community
  • Annual and Sustainability reports
  • Annual stockholders’ meeting
  • Quarterly analysts' briefings
  • Manila Water website
  • One-on-one meetings
  • Press releases
  • Roadshows
  • Changing regulatory environments
  • Growth-enabling environments and expansion initiatives beyond the East Zone
  • Company top risks
  • Environmental and social safeguards
  • Financial and operating performance
  • Publication of annual report and sustainability report
  • Timely disclosures to the regulatory agencies and  investing community
  • Media coordination
  • Press briefings and conferences
  • Availability and accessibility of corporate communications personnel for interviews
  • Postings on social media
  • Postings on the Manila Water website
  • Lakbayan Water Trail Tour
  • Agos Magazine
  • Regular engagement with local and national media
  • Water supply reliability
  • Service continuity
  • Used water projects
  • El Niño and La Niña impacts
  • Customer service policies
  • Disaster preparedness and response
  • Sustainability programs
  • Water tariff
  • Investor relations and disclosures
  • New business operations and developments
  • Participation in various local and international conferences, exhibits, expositions and fora on water and used water provision
  • Production of audio visual presentations on water and used water
  • Release of public information on issues and concerns  
  • Regular information sharing to traditional (broadcast and print) and new (website, social media sites, blogs, online news sites) media on service updates and ongoing and upcoming projects

Manila Water and the Sustainable Development Goals

In September 2015, the United Nations adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which included a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These cover a broad range of social, environmental and economic issues such as poverty, hunger, health, education, equality, energy, climate change, infrastructure, livelihood and justice.  These expanded goals, intended to further the Millennium Development Goals, have a corresponding set of detailed targets which can only be effectively attained through partnerships between government, private sector and civil society.

As a pioneering private sector partner in nation-building, the Ayala group has embraced the SDGs as the backbone of its sustainability framework, manifested by aligning its investments and sustainability commitments with the seventeen global goals, in partnership with engaged stakeholders.   Its subsidiaries have each been challenged to at least one of the SDGs as a key focus area.

In the course of delivering clean water and sanitation services to its customers, Manila Water’s main  contribution to the Ayala sustainability goals is attending to the targets of SDG No. 6 – Clean Water and Sanitation for all. However, in the process of ensuring sustained business growth, the other SDGs are addressed as well. Manila Water's inclusive business model gives special focus on providing clean and affordable water and sanitation services to the poor, as evidenced by its highly successful Tubig Para Sa Barangay (Water for the Poor) program.

Access to affordable potable water and proper sanitation reduces the incidence of waterborne diseases, and ensures community members are healthy and will realize their maximum human potential.  For businesses, adequate supply of water and the availability of used water services guarantee continued productivity, contributing to the provision of jobs and growth of the economy, while mitigating negative environmental impacts.  With geological and climate threats on the horizon, the company’s commitment to strengthening its assets and operations contributes to the overall resilience of the communities it serves.  Finally, the company has long realized that the positive impacts of its investments and operations can only be maximized through industry leadership and various, effective partnerships with engaged stakeholders; the best examples of these are the Kasangga and Toka Toka initiatives.  All these show that social and environmental goals are aligned with the business goals, and actualized in the local, national and global scale.

developing our employees How we prepare our people for business growth to serve more communities

Manila Water values its people and considers employees as its most important resources and stakeholders. Thus, Manila Water attracts the best available talents with exceptional skill sets, who can embody the corporate values and whose personally held principles are aligned with those of the organization. While a high standard of personal morals are considered in recruitment, it is ensured however that Manila Water does not discriminate against age, race, gender or religious affiliation or cultural background.  In 2015, the company committed no violations against national policies and laws on forced labor, child labor or discrimination.

Employee welfare is a top priority of the company. The compensation packages given to its employees are at par with industry standards. Entry level employees receive competitive packages above the minimum salary range, or the daily wage set by the National Wages and Productivity Commission. Manila Water talents enjoy bonuses, merit increases, corporate incentive plans, and are entitled to vacation, sick, special and other mandatory leaves.  Multiple loan facilities with subsidized loan rates, health insurance coverage, life insurance coverage and retirement benefits are also provided.







Manila Water Below 30
Over 50
Boracay Water Below 30
Over 50
Clark Water Below 30
Over 50
Laguna Water Below 30
Over 50
Below 30
Over 50







Manila Water Male
Boracay Water Male
Clark Water Male
Laguna Water Male

Regional distribution






Luzon Manila Water
Clark Water
Laguna Water
Visayas Manila Water
Boracay Water
Cebu Water
Mindanao Manila Water
International Manila Water

The company duly recognizes employees who demonstrate outstanding performance.  In 2015,  93 percent of the employees went through annual performance evaluation, while the remaining 7 percent were covered by a collective bargaining agreement provision. Apart from the annual corporate incentives, recognition is also given to exemplary performers. The Huwarang Manggagawa Award is given to rank and file employees and has been institutionalized since the first year of the company's existence. The President’s Pride due to Performance or P3 Award, is given to middle managers; in 2015, 133 employees were honored. The Chairman’s Circle Award is given to top performing senior managers; 28 employees were recognized in 2015, an increase from 24 in 2014.  Award events for recognition of personnel are also held in the Laguna Water, Clark Water and Boracay Water subsidiaries.

Being a rapidly transforming and expanding organization is a healthy challenge for Manila Water in terms of providing the necessary talents at the proper time. A significant number of employees, mostly former MWSS employees who joined the company after privatization and who are considered to hold critical skills and institutional memory, are nearing retirement.  The company considers the inability to hand down these skills and institutional memory as a major business sustainability risk, in the face of the desire to grow the business not just in Metro Manila’s East Zone but also across the Philippines and Southeast Asia. This threat pushes the imperative for Manila Water to source, prepare and develop a critical mass of employee champions with appropriate skills, institutional memory and the essential passion for service which Manila Water employees are known for.

Managing succession is crucial in securing our leadership capability which drives and sustains business performance over time. Given its impact to our future and our capacity to execute against our strategic priorities, succession management is recognized as a high priority mandate within Manila Water and its local and foreign subsidiaries.

MWC’s succession management is anchored and aligned to the strategic needs and direction of the company. The Management Committee (Mancom) of Manila Water Company takes an active role in setting the tone at the top and defining the strategic goals for succession in all its operating units and subsidiaries.

While Manila Water remains open to exercise its prerogative to access the most qualified talents for its critical leadership posts, the company provides available opportunities to qualified, ready and deserving internal talents before scanning the external talent market. The internal talents have intimate knowledge of our culture, our business, and our customers which can enable seamless leadership transitions.

Succession Management is being implemented by Manila Water Company to ensure that internal talents with potential are identified, managed, retained and given rich development experiences early enough to prepare them for successful leadership in the future, and deepen their readiness when opportunities become available. The company created a Talent Master Plan to ensure that Manila Water is able to sustain the development of the right quantity and quality of talents, not only for the current needs of the business but also for future requirements, as the company has a rich pipeline of projects and business prospects.   A key talent management philosophy of Manila Water is to develop employees to retain and sharpen specific competency sets for specific roles to realize the company’s corporate objectives and support personal career growth.  The company regularly reviews Human Capital Proficiency measures to assess what percentage of the talent pool possess the necessary capabilities to perform functions critical to the execution of the organization's strategy.

In 2015, the Manila Water University (MWU) launched a competency-based assessment for each talent. This gave way to the development of competency-based learning interventions to address gaps discovered during the assessment.

The cadetship program of Manila Water, a  successful developmental program of the Company in its early years, was revived in 2015. The specific focus this time is to develop and grow the pool of talents for its expansion. To strengthen the base business of the company, the Territory Management School was also re-launched, to be able to equip new and existing talents with the knowledge, skills and attributes critical to the effective performance of the Territory Manager role.

In 2015, the talent development programs facilitated 205 training sessions or about 41,000 total training hours in the East Zone. The turnover rate is 6.85 percent (covers resignation and retirement) which is below the all industry rate of 10 percent.

MWC Talent Management Philosophy

  • Every employee is a talent and a corporate resource.
  • Effective leadership is critical to our success.
  • Our talents are capable of delivering  excellent performance with the highest degree of integrity.
  • We will develop our talents to sharpen the competencies needed to realize our corporate objectives and support career development.
  • Every talent is accountable for his own career development.







Manila Water Senior
Rank and File
Boracay Water Senior
Rank and File
Clark Water Senior
Rank and File
Laguna Water Senior
Rank and File

Manila Water believes that engaged employees equates to having a productive workforce.  In 2014, an employee engagement survey was conducted to assess the employees’ level of engagement. The survey, developed by the Development Dimensions International (DDI) resulted in the finding that Manila Water employees were moderately engaged with a scorecard of 83.4 percent, vis-a-vis an average external norm of 70.3 percent. The survey covered factors, from employee motivation to leadership across the corporate groups.  With the scorecard as a guide, the company responded with an employee engagement framework intended to help increase the level of engagement. This highlights programs that will enhance employees' work-life balance and aligns core values and targets. Various programs were launched in 2015.

Bawat Patak Tumatatak, the company’s flagship volunteer program, was formally launched in the 3rd quarter of 2015. It culminated with a total of 173 volunteers for tree planting initiatives, creek clean-ups and the environmental advocacy project, Bawat Patak Tumatatak Goes to School, a project which aims to engage the company’s non-frontliners to communicate to grade school students in Metro Manila the importance of treating used water and caring for the environment.

Manila Water celebrated its 18th year in 2015. Month-long activities for employees were implemented in three themes:  Thankful @18, Celebrate @18 and Transform @18.

Elementary students listening to Kuya Pat's environmental message in a Bawat Patak Tumatatak event.

Apart from company-wide events, the various groups in the company had their own initiatives in building camaraderie and unity and sharing knowledge.  The Corporate Operations Group holds an annual summit that encourages sharing of the latest technical knowledge and forward-looking insights on innovation and operations.  The EZBOlympics, an annual team building activity of the East Zone Business Operations, is aimed at creating synergy and unity within the group consisting of eight business areas and headquarters’ operations.  The Corporate Finance and Governance Group had its first team building in 2015, targeted at gaining understanding of the mandates and activities of different departments in the company and at the same time promoting team work.  Enhancing seamless association and cooperation were the key pointers for the team building activities of the Corporate Strategic Affairs Group and the Corporate Project Management Group. Clark Water, Laguna Water and Boracay Water have their own initiatives in building and executing effective company strategy and keeping employees engaged, high-spirited, customer-centric and productive.  

Keeping the employees updated with the key initiatives of the company is a must, to be able to maintain the focus on the goals and objectives as well as to motivate them. Internal communication tools are in place to sustain awareness and passion. For employees, an intranet portal named Agos shares information on organizational news and events. Sustainability Wednesdays, a weekly company bulletin sent via email, provides periodic information to employees on various topics such as environmental sustainability tips, employee programs, operating highlights on innovations and resource efficiency.

helping build communities How we empower people by providing access to reliable, affordable water and sanitation services

Manila Water’s primary impact to society, and in support of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, is through compliance with its main service obligation of making clean and safe water available to the communities it serves at an affordable cost. The company aligns with the United Nations’ vision of a global community enjoying the human right of access to drinking water, sanitation and improved hygiene. Water provided by the company is 100 percent compliant with the Philippine National Drinking Standards of Drinking Water to safeguard the health of over 6.3 million people. This is validated by collecting and testing more than 900 water samples across the enterprise.  While keeping the quality of its service high, Manila Water maintains its water rates within affordable limits, to be able to cater to low-income communities.  Manila Water is also committed to excellence in providing expanded sewerage and sanitation services.

Manila Water ensures the provision of clean and safe water for all, now, and for the years to come.

Manila Water's Lingap program provides access to water to public service institutions.

Through the years, Manila Water has found innovative solutions to address a number of social and economic constraints to make sure that all customers enjoy potable water straight from their taps.  Its flagship program, Tubig para sa Barangay (TPSB) ‘Water for the Poor,’ which garnered numerous local and international citations, reaches out to the underprivileged communities by providing affordable water service connection to all. Before Manila Water’s takeover of the operations of the water utility, these communities did not have access to piped water resulting to buying water from vendors with no guarantee on water quality. Vended water would cost around 20 to 50 pesos per drum, translating to 100 to 250 pesos per cubic meter—5 times more expensive than piped-in water. Alternative sources such as shallow wells, were unsafe due to improperly designed and operated septic tanks which leached into the groundwater table. TPSB posed as a socio-economic solution, reduced the spread of water-borne diseases and made water affordable to poor families. Supplementing the TPSB is a health and sanitation component, the Lingap Program, which helps provide acccess to wash areas and drinking fountains in institutions such as schools, hospitals, charitable institutions, city jails, churches and other spaces for the public.

Manila Water provides direct water supply services to its customers within the Metro Manila East Zone, Clark, Boracay and Laguna territories.  It also provides treated bulk water, sourced from sustainable surface water sources, to the water distributors in the province of Cebu. In 2015, the company has also started development work for a bulk water project in Tagum City, similar to the bulk water business in Ho Chi Minh City.      

Manila Water goes beyond providing water. The other half of the company’s service obligation is to collect and treat the water used by its customers, and to return it to the environment in a sustainable manner, thus ensuring clean water bodies that can be sources of drinking water and food.  

‘Sanitation’ services in the form of regular septic tank desludging every 5 to 7 years are available for the served communities where sewer lines are not yet in place. By providing a longer water retention time in the septic tanks when sludge is taken out regularly, households avoid clogged plumbing and septic tanks and the preliminary removal of organic pollution and disease-causing pathogens in the used water is improved.      

In Metro Manila’s East Zone, Clark Economic Zone and Boracay Island, the company has delineated used water catchments where sewer systems are in various stages of development and operations. Separate sewer systems such as the ones in Clark, parts of Boracay and Makati, Quezon City, Pasig and Cainta provide full treatment for the customers directed connected via sewer lines.  However, to attain quick wins and provide used water services to as many customers as possible, the company, along with its regulators, has adopted the combined sewer-drainage approach in the unsewered areas where partially treated septic tank effluents along with untreated used water from showers, laundry and kitchens discharged by households into street canals are intercepted and conveyed to a sewage treatment plant for full treatment.  In combined systems, household septic tanks are still functional and desludging services are provided regularly.


Customer Centricity
Providing efficient and reliable customer service is an essential performance indicator for a Manila Water manager on the ground. A 24x7 hotline is available for Manila Water customers and requests or complaints are immediately referred to Territory Managers for quick action.  On payment options for water bills and new service connections, customers are provided convenience through partnerships with more financial service institutions, whether for cash payments or through mobile banking applications.  

As more and more people have internet access through their mobile devices, social media has been an effective means of transmitting information in a faster manner.  The company sends regular updates, information about on-going projects, water interruptions and program activities through Facebook and Twitter. Through these online platforms, feedback is also received instantly and customer service representatives can respond promptly.

Annalyn R. de la Cruz

Resident, Southville
Brgy. Langkiwa Relocation Site
Santa Rosa, Laguna

“I have been living in Southville for six years now and our experience living without water in our faucets was really difficult.

Before Laguna Water came, we used to fetch water every day in a nearby shallow well owned by our neighbor.  My family used to consume almost 20 pails of water daily which costs 2 pesos per pail.  My husband at that time was not employed and I worked at a nearby canteen. There were times that we had no money for our daily needs.  And the worst part of it was that, there were times that we couldn’t afford water. Our family skipped bathing for three straight days.  

Having Laguna Water deliver their services to our community created a huge impact in our lives.  Waking up each morning with water in our faucets made our lives easier.  We no longer need to wake our neighbor up early in the morning just to ask for water. Now, we have more savings allocated for other important family expenses.”

The company publishes a magazine, Agos, where stakeholders are updated on new activities, advocacy programs and upcoming partnerships.

Finally, the company believes the best way to communicate with its customers is to meet them face to face.  Manila Water managers assigned to the service areas regularly perform "walk-the-line", a special service in the neighborhood where they can get to know the sentiments and patterns of the customers better, get feedback on the services and address concerns in a faster manner.  The company also holds a quarterly gathering for local neighborhood leaders, to affectionately called kasanggas, where company updates are provided and feedback gathered.  These kasanggas function as the company’s extension – a force multiplier of sorts  – in terms of spreading news and clarifying the latest issues to the various neighborhoods, as well as acting as intermediaries in behalf of customers with specific concerns or complaints.

Manila Water Foundation’s vision is ‘to become the enabler of change that will uplift the quality of life of the base of the pyramid communities, the poorest of the poor, through sustainable access to water and used water services’. Through partnerships and collaboration, Manila Water Foundation has been offering support and opportunities for communities to improve and enrich their lives.  In 2015, it reached out to beneficiaries in the communities served by Manila Water’s operations within Metro Manila and across the Philippines.  

The Foundation’s focus areas are geared towards a common goal: for its beneficiaries to become socially and economically empowered.

In 2015, the Manila Water Foundation launched the Prize for Engineering Excellence. In its maiden year, it gave recognition to five exemplary Filipino engineers who have made positive change in communities through innovations in water, sanitation, environment and sustainability. Through this search, the Foundation highlights the stories of professionals whose work have largely gone unnoticed but have created lasting impact


Manila Water Foundation's Focus Areas

The Manila Water Foundation honored five Filipino engineers for their contribution to environmental sustainability in communities.

Manila Water believes that in the course of helping build communities, it is not enough to simply provide access to water and used water services for all.  The resiliency of the services being provided is also of primary importance, considering that the Philippines is prone to natural and man-made disasters. It is unfortunate that the economic development gains in several regions were destroyed because of a single disaster. The work of empowering people through the provision of vital services is incomplete if those services are not reliable.  

The company has adopted strategies in order to minimize the adverse impacts of natural and man-made threats on the continuity of the company’s operations.  

A Climate Change Policy was adopted in 2007 (Manila Water was among the first Philippine companies in the private sector to do so) and it was revised in 2013 to align with the country’s strategy of prioritizing climate resilience work rather than carbon emissions reduction.  The key manifestations of the climate change adaptation commitments of the company include the mainstreaming of vulnerability assessment in the planning for new water and used water assets, retrofitting assets to be disaster-resilient, having a business continuity plan for its operations, taking a pro-active stance in the management and development of water sources and engaging key stakeholders in addressing risks that the company has no total control over.

A comprehensive Business Continuity Plan, involving the employees, supply chain, critical utility allies, and local and national government agencies, has been in place and operational for many years, and is continually being reviewed and modified to further address residual risks.   Procedures were developed to address critical incidents such as pipe breakages, massive power outages, typhoons bringing strong winds and floods, and earthquakes.  Service areas are divided into several quadrants under the assumption that critical transport routes and other utility lines will be interrupted, rendering each quadrant isolated yet hopefully self-sufficient.

On the San Jose Bridge is a major pipeline from the East La Mesa Treatment Plant that supplies water to San Mateo and Rodriguez, Rizal.

The company has articulated its hierarchy of priorities in times of disasters, in the following order:  Company, Customer and Country.  To be able to serve customers, ensuring the welfare of its employees and operability of water assets are the company’s priorities in times of disasters. The basic premise is that the company can only serve its customers if the critical employees can go to work and run the facilities.  Only when the needs of the customers are met will the company be able to allocate excess capacities to assist communities that are not part of the company's service areas.

Manila Water’s well-practiced call-tree procedure accounts for each employee’s whereabouts, ability to report to work and assistance requirements, if necessary.   Work is under way to harmonize this procedure with Ayala Corporation’s initiative to account for all employees within the group of companies during times of disaster, and to identify points of convergence in disaster response such as rescue work which makes no distinction between Manila Water employees and, say, Globe or BPI employees residing in the same communities.  The Ayala ASSIST smartphone app was launched in the last quarter of 2015 and has in its database the addresses and contact details of all Ayala employees across the country.

The company continues to strengthen the resiliency of its employees by keeping them aware of different incident scenarios. In 2015, the company conducted roll-outs, table-top drills and evacuation drills in 35 water and used water facilities.  Earthquake and landslide search orientation courses and water search, mobile treatment plant operation trainings and rescue training courses were conducted for the company’s critical personnel and security guards. The company recognizes that disaster response, especially for that of a lifeline service such as water, cannot be prepared for and executed in isolation.  The company’s suppliers, contractors and service providers play a huge role in building the resiliency of the service.  Arrangements are in place for each quadrant where employees and service providers will have adequate access to standby equipment, spare parts, fuel, food and emergency cash.   There is also protocol for providing for help to other subsidiaries within reach.  For example, Laguna Water and Clark Water will be ready to assist the Metro Manila concession and vice versa.  The company is also a convenor of the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation, a coalition of large corporations in the country – some of whom are competitors – that aim to consolidate and coordinate private sector response to disasters, to support each other and the government.

The Angat Dam in Bulacan is the main source of water for Metro Manila.

As earlier mentioned, helping build communities is ensuring that lifeline assets are physically resilient.   Several facilities were retrofitted after Typhoon Ondoy in 2009 to withstand another flood of that magnitude, and new assets were engineered and built to be compliant with revised standards.

While the company has shown reliability in addressing several instances of power outages and floods due to the frequent typhoons visiting the country, its resilience against a major earthquake has not yet been tested. However, capital investments were alloted into addressing this risk.  The company analyzed the projected impacts presented in the government’s Metro Manila Earthquake Impact Reduction Study of 2004, where a 7.2 magnitude quake will result in an  estimated 4,000 pipe breakages and immediate loss of 34,000 lives.  The company has completed seismic retrofits to pre-privatization assets such as the Balara Filters, and in order to withstand pipe breakages caused by earthquakes or other disasters, distribution lines were replaced with high-density polyethylene pipes connected through butt-fusion and electrofusion.  Work on seismic retrofits of critical pipe crossings has been accomplished, most notably those along the Marikina West Valley Fault. Critical pipe crossings on bridges spanning creeks and rivers have also been completed and many are still ongoing.  One of the best disaster preparedness practices of Tokyo has been emulated by the company, through the establishment of large online reservoirs which are expected to retain enough water for manual fetching should the main pipelines and pumping stations break down after an earthquake.  Several of these online reservoirs will be installed in the priority areas of Marikina and Pasig.  More units are being planned for other areas across the entire East Zone.

A core concern to the survival of the business and the communities it serves is that of water security.  With increasing water demand from an increasing population and growing economy, the availability of raw water cannot be allowed to be a limiting factor.  Manila Water, in support of the mandate of the water security agency, MWSS, proactively searches for and assesses new water sources that will help prevent another supply shortage in the short and medium term.   

Angat Dam remains the major water source for both concessionaires of Metro Manila, supplying roughly 97 percent of the city’s water demand.  In 2015, the water level at the dam reached a critical level of 169.14 meters above sea level due to continuous releases to the various water users despite historically low rainfalls due to an El Niño event that was expected to persist until the second quarter of 2016, compelling the National Water Resources Board to reduce the water allocation to Metro Manila in the last quarter of 2015, from the usual 43 cubic meters per second (cms) to 38 cms.   

To alleviate the adverse effects of extreme droughts, various initiatives were undertaken in coordination with water agencies such as preparations for cloud seeding, repair of the Angat Low Level Outlet and the revival of standby deepwell facilities.  Long term measures undertaken include the development of the Sumag River Diversion Project, rehabilitation of the Umiray-Angat Transbasin Facility and protection of the critical downstream watersheds of Ipo and La Mesa. The Sumag River Diversion Facility, targeted for completion by the third quarter of 2016, is expected to provide an additional 2.2 cms of water to Angat reservoir.

Despite the continuing El Niño, by the end of 2015, however, the stored water in Angat reservoir was at a near-spilling level thanks to two typhoons that crossed the region in the fourth quarter.  Manila Water’s East Zone issued an advisory to its customers on possible water interruptions and the reduction of pressure during times of low demand.  However, customers in the East Zone barely felt the impact of the water shortage due to the company implementing various efficiency initiatives.  The company still monitors the daily levels of Angat and continues its dialogue with other water users as mismanagement of dam outflows in the first few months of the year may still result in a water shortage near the tail-end of the summer season.

As part of the preparations for the submission of the business plan in the next rate rebasing exercise, Manila Water continues to identify, investigate and assess potential water sources in the vicinity of Metro Manila, Rizal and Laguna. The company will implement its medium term source project known as Rizal Province Water Supply Improvement Project (RPWSIP), which includes a 50 mld expandable to 100 mld water treatment plant that will utilize membrane treatment-based technology and absract its source from Laguna de Bay.

In Clark Water, the Sacobia River Source Project was conceptualized to augment the supply from existing wells across the freeport zone.  Two infiltration wells along the river banks have commenced operations and another five are scheduled to be commissioned in 2016.  More wells are slated for development in 2017.

Laguna Water is currently developing a well field located in Biñan to augment the raw water supply from the Matang Tubig Spring  as well as the numerous deep wells dug up by subdivision developers across the service area that have been subsequently turned over to the water utility.   

Cebu Water, a bulk water provider for the Metropolitan Cebu Water District, started operations in January 2015 at an initial 18 million liters per day production rate, abstracting its raw water from a river in Carmen, 30 kilometers away from the city.  The company is scouting for more sustainable water sources in the periphery of Cebu that will help reduce the city’s long lasting dependence on its almost-depleted groundwater sources.   

The effects of the 2015-2016 El Niño was most apparent in the southern provinces of the Philippines. The main source of water for Zamboanga City suffered the worst levels ever observed.  Manila Water’s non-revenue water project for its water district is still at an early stage, but it is expected that any NRW gains in 2016 will help alleviate the ongoing water shortage in the city.

Despite the continuing El Niño...customers in the East Zone barely felt the impact of the water shortage due to the company implementing various efficiency initiatives.

protecting the environment How we help clean the waterways and secure water for the future

Manila Water’s service obligations include the collection and treatment of the used water of customers prior to proper discharge to receiving bodies of water.  The treatment of used water contributes to the rehabilitation of degraded water bodies, ensuring biodiversity recovery, safe aquaculture yields, alleviation of waterborne diseases brought by unsanitary conditions, enhancing the value of communities situated along waterways, and improving tourism potential.  

A total of 42.34 million cubic meters of used water were treated in 2015 in the used water facilities of Manila Water’s operations in the Philippines.  This includes the septage regularly collected from the septic tanks of customers where sewer systems are not yet available.   All discharges from used water facilities consistently met the effluent criteria of the receiving water bodies, preventing  8,329  tons of organic pollutants (measured as  Biochemical Oxygen Demand or BOD) from entering the rivers, lakes and the marine environment.

The Metro Manila concession contributes to the restoration of the water quality of the major river systems in  Metro Manila – Pasig, San Juan and Marikina Rivers – and ultimately Manila Bay itself,  through a Three-River Used Water Master Plan that commits to connect all used water sources in the service area to sewer systems that provide full treatment by the end of the concession in 2037, in compliance with the continuing mandamus issued by the Supreme Court in 2008 to several government agencies to clean up Manila Bay.

The expansion of sewer coverage continues with the construction of three large used water systems that will add 275 million liters of used water per day to the current capacity:  the Marikina North Sewerage System, Taguig North Sewerage System and North and South Pasig Sewerage System which will serve more than one million residents of Marikina, San Mateo, Taguig, Makati and Pasig.  The Marikina North STP and the Taguig North STP, currently the two largest sewage treatment plants (STP) constructed in the Philippines so far, were completed in late 2014 and underwent commissioning and process proving in 2015.  The Ilugin STP, covering North and South Pasig and due for completion in 2017, is set to be an even larger sewage treatment plant than Marikina North.   The energization of the three large used water treatment facilities will increase the sewer coverage to 22 percent (by population) in 2017.

The Marikina North Sewerage System consists of a 100 million liter per day (mld) STP at Balubad, Marikina and approximately 22 kilometers of sewer lines connecting the interceptor boxes near river outfalls.  Used water consisting of pre-treated effluents of septic tanks as well as untreated greywater from laundry, kitchens and bathrooms that flow along street canals and creek outfalls will be intercepted, conveyed to the STP and treated, benefitting 450,000 residents of Marikina City and San Mateo, Rizal.  The completed treatment facility has undergone commissioning and was under process proving as of the end of 2015.  The priority segments of the sewer network, located in the northern part of the catchment, is already operational, while remaining sections of the sewer network in the south of the catchment, are still to be completed due to right of way issues.

the water trail







Water Source Umiray-Angat-Ipo- La Mesa Resource System Nabaoy River Luyang River 31 deepwells 91 deepwells and Matang Tubig Spring
Water Treatment Balara 1, Balara 2 and East La Mesa Water Treatment Plants (WTP)- conventional (coagulation/flocculation, sedimentation, rapid sand filtration and chlorination) Caticlan WTP – sedimentation and chlorination Carmen WTP - conventional In-line chlorination and iron and manganese removal In-line chlorination and iron and manganese removal, sand removal
Laboratory/ Water Quality Testing Manila Water Laboratory Services Boracay Water Laboratory Services & external laboratory External laboratory Clark Water Laboratory Services Internal water quality testing and Manila Water Laboratory Services
Distribution System 25 pumping stations and 26 reservoirs 6 pumping stations and 2 reservoirs 2 pumping stations and 2 reservoirs 3 pumping stations and 5 reservoirs 6 pumping stations and 6 reservoirs
Customers Metro Manila East Zone of Metro Manila and parts of Rizal province Boracay Island (Brgys. Manoc-Manoc, Balabag, and Yapak) Metro Cebu Water District Clark Freeport and Clark Special Economic Zones Binan, Cabuyao and Sta. Rosa, Laguna
Used Water Treatment 41 Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) and 2 Septage Treatment Plants (SpTPs) Balabag STP None (Bulk Water Services only) Clark Water STP Laguna Technopark  STP

The Taguig North Sewerage System, inaugurated in December 2015, consists of a 75 mld STP located at the Libingan ng mga Bayani compound in Taguig and 72 kilometers of separate sewer network to capture and treat the domestic used water of 300,000 residents and businesses in Taguig and Makati.  The two-hectare land on which the STP was built was acquired through a usufruct agreement between the Department of National Defense and Manila Water. The STP was constructed below ground, leaving a history-themed Liwasan ng Kagitingan at Kalikasan (Valor and Nature) Park on top of it, featuring seven murals depicting heroism through Philippine history.

The North and South Pasig Sewerage System is composed of the 100 mld Ilugin STP, located at Pinagbuhatan, Pasig,  and 65 kilometers of interceptor network that will account for the used water of 300,000 residents and businesses in Pasig City, the Ortigas Business District and parts of Quezon City, upon completion in 2017.

The three new STPs were designed using the Sequencing Batch Reactor (SBR) technology which is capable of removing nutrients with very little additional land and equipment retrofit requirement.

It will be noted that the environmental regulator has long intended to release a new set of effluent standards that include nutrient limits, despite opposition from the water regulator, arguing that this will increase the cost of treating used water which will ultimately be passed on to the consumer.  Manila Water has manifested that it understands the importance of removing nutrients, not just organic pollution, to ensure the recovery of water bodies, and it will comply with the new nutrient limits should they become a legal requirement, effectively redefining the service obligation. Even if the treatment objectives currently do not incorporate nutrient removal, the STP was designed  to incorporate such capacity with minimal additional CAPEX.  

Boracay Water is also undergoing expansion of its sewer coverage to cater to the island’s increasing number of tourists and residents. An additional 2 mld package treatment plant was completed in the premises of the Balabag STP to augment the existing 6 mld capacity that serves the central tourism area of the island.  To address unserved communities, the company started constructing a new STP located in Brgy. Manocmanoc with a nominal capacity of 5 mld, with commissioning expected in July 2016.  The Manocmanoc STP is also designed to accommodate excess flows from the existing Balabag STP catchment.

The Taguig North Sewage Treatment Plant is one of the largest STPs in the Philippines with 75 mld capacity.

Undersecretary Ernesto G. Carolina

Philippine Veterans Affairs Office

The partnership between Manila Water and PVAO is a good opportunity, because PVAO is pro-environment. We signed a MOA and we became partners in that strategic goal of providing clean water to the public. We have synergized our vision of sowing love of country through our veterans, and Manila Water’s vision of providing clean water for the environment and in promoting the Clean Water Act.

We have a strategic engagement. Water, clean water, is a strategic resource. A future without clean water would be catastrophic. This partnership is linked: love of country, veterans’ heroism with caring for the environment. If you love the country, you will not destroy the environment. If you love the country you will sustain the environment for the future citizens.

The impact on the people and the environment is very clear. We know that before these STPs, used water flowed directly to the sea and rivers. But now, all of these are converted into clean water. It is a big stride towards a clean environment. I look forward to future partnerships which benefit the community and society.

Informing and raising the communities’ awareness is key and essential. People generally put their stake into it when they are aware of how a project can have long term and strategic outcomes. Effective partnerships can help make that happen.

The company also has drawn up plans to construct a third STP in the medium term, covering the community of Yapak in the northwest of the island, thus completing the used water master plan for Boracay.
In the first quarter of 2015, Boracay Water started to decommission the sludge drying beds located along the slopes of Mt. Luho, originally established by Boracay Water’s water utility predecessor under the control of the then-Philippine Tourism Authority, now Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA).   Boracay Water adopted the long-successful biosolids management scheme of Metro Manila’s East Zone by realizing the potential of the nutrient-rich material for agriculture.  The company entered into an agreement with a local partner to take the dried biosolids out of the island, process the material into fertilizer or soil conditioner, and distribute the product among the farmers in the main island of Panay.   The priority is to remove all dried biosolids deposited in the Mt Luho facility after many years to make way for future site development plans of TIEZA.  It is expected that during full operations, all the biosolids from the Balabag STP and Manoc Manoc STP will be regularly transported across to Caticlan and eventually to farms across the province of Aklan, thus closing the loop between sanitation and agriculture.

Clark Water’s used water treatment current capacity of 27 mld is more than enough to treat the present used water of Clark locators.  The subsidiary has plans to upgrade the treatment plant in 2016 to increase the capacity to 47 mld to accommodate the projected increase in used water by 2021.  The second phase of the upgrade is an additional 24 mld capacity to serve used water treatment requirements by the end of the concession in 2040.

The Laguna Technopark STP, the operations of which was taken over by Laguna Water in 2014, will be upgraded to accommodate the increasing flow of used water from industrial locators of the technopark.  The subsidiary is also constructing a 40 cubic meter per day capacity septage treatment facility to treat the septage collected from the septic tanks of its customers.  Both projects are expected to be completed in 2016.

To accommodate the needs of commercial customers with pre-treatment requirements but do not have onsite used water treatment facilities, Manila Water Total Solutions (MWTS) developed its Integrated Used Water Solutions packages, consisting of plug-and-play STPs for customers such as quick service restaurants and hospitals, using variants of classical and bio-chemical activated sludge technology to treat commercial wastewater.  MWTS also has begun to serve the requirements of Manila Water and Ayala Land subsidiaries such as the package sewage treatment plant in Boracay’s Balabag site and an entirely new STP to replace the old one at the Cebu IT Park.

For Manila Water to achieve its sustainability goals for the environment, the company believes an effective education and engagement campaign raises awareness and fosters involvement among stakeholders in the rehabilitation, protection and conservation of the natural resources.  The advocacy goes beyond sharing information about water sources and how used water returns to the natural waterways, but how they themselves can take part.  In 2015, the company sustained its long-standing programs and successfully launched new environmental education and engagement initiatives.

The Lakbayan Water Trail Tour takes participants to the water and used water treatment facilities of the company to raise awareness on the importance of protecting water sources and how water is treated and distributed to the customers.  The tour also shares how used water from customers is collected and treated before discharge to the water bodies. In 2015, a total of 2,009 participants from 96 groups joined the Lakbayan tours in Metro Manila’s East Zone.

Lakbayan tours were also conducted in the facilities of Boracay Water. A total of 145 guests from schools and the local government had a first hand view of the utility’s operations in 2015. Laguna Water will also commence on its version of the tour in 2016.

A ‘mobile’ version of the Lakbayan was introduced in 2015 to expand the program’s reach and engage more communities, especially students.  Instead of participants visiting the actual facilities, the Lakbayan experience was  brought to them through the Manila Water Story and Lakbayan videos, complemented by lively discussions between the Lakbayan team and the participants.  A total of 9,868 individuals from 195 groups participated in the program in its first year.

Other wastes of Used Water Treatment
of Metro Manila East Zone In tons





Biosolids 15,286 22,110 23,175
Grit and Screenings 994 1,632 1,902

A spin-off of the Mobile Lakbayan was the ‘Bawat Patak, Tumatatak Goes to School’ project, a series of environmental education activities developed for elementary school students with Manila Water employee volunteers serving as the resource persons and activity facilitators.  The topics tackled were proper solid waste management and used water management, delivered in a fun and interactive way through story telling, puppet show and games.  In 2015, each Business Area adopted an elementary  school in its service area.  A total of 813 students and 88 employees participated.  As a manifestation of the lessons learned by the students, environmental projects related to the topics discussed were initiated by the participating schools and the best projects in every school were showcased in an inter-school competition.

Manila Water also joined in the nationwide Information, Education and Communication (IEC) campaign on the National Septage and Sewerage Management Program of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) to educate city officials across the country on the need to establish used water infrastructure and services in their communities.

A massive information campaign in 358 barangays was conducted by the company through the desludging caravans, Kasangga Days, Abot Kamay sa Barangay, Mobile Lakbayan and Toka Toka activities.  All these were aimed at communicating the value of shared stewardship and conscientiousness, and to encourage households to have their septic tanks desludged regularly and agree to connect to sewer lines when available.

After each Environmental Session, participants commit to taking care of the environment by building habits to protect waterways and encouraging others to pitch in.

Clark Water’s OPLAN C.A.R.E. (Clean-up, Aid Giving, Rehabilitation, Education), its award-winning flagship program on corporate social responsibility, partly consists of IEC activities aimed at intensifying awareness on water and the environment for both internal and external stakeholders.  Together with various locators in the Clark Freeport Zone, Clark Water planted 500 seedlings at the open grounds of its used water treatment plant as part of its target to plant over 8,000 native trees by 2020.

Toka Toka is the first and only environmental movement in the Philippines that highlights the need to manage used water and its impact on rivers and waterways. On its third year, Toka Toka launched Project Lingap Sapa with the aim to change the mindset of the communities residing near creeks and rivers, and inspire them to have a greater sense of responsibility in taking care of waterways. Manila Water collaborated with various national government agencies to form the Toka Toka Council and designed a holistic approach to water education for the public. The council is composed of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

Lingap Sapa’s target stakeholders for 2015 were the nine barangays that straddle Maytunas Creek in Mandaluyong.  Residents of these barangays were identified to have crucial dual roles of being beneficiaries of the project and at the same time as vital guardians of the creek.


Employees, community and government agency partners participate in the Lingap Sapa, a creek clean-up drive to collect trash and encourage others to commit to safeguarding the environment.

With Laguna Water on board, the Toka Toka movement will be expanded to include CALABARZON areas in 2016.  Manila Water intends to forge more partnerships with government and non-government partners to further advance the advocacy of the movement in the areas it serves and across the country.

In summary, Manila Water’s approach in educating and engaging key stakeholders is best summed up in a Confucian proverb about educating young people:  “If you tell me, I will forget; If you show me, I will remember; If you involve me, I will understand”.  The ‘telling’ is done through the numerous kasangga days and regular dialogues organized by the frontliners of the company.  The ‘showing’ is manifested through the Lakbayan experience.  The ‘involving’ is done through the Toka Toka movement.  It is in these three approaches that a critical mass of aware and committed individuals is built in support of achieving real positive impacts for the environment which sustains the community.

The Philippine operations of Manila Water obtain 92 percent  of their raw water from surface water sources and the rest from groundwater and river infiltration.  These water sources face both natural and man-made threats resulting in upsets in the natural hydrology as well as the quality of the raw water.  Natural threats are the occasional droughts brought about by El Niño, floods and landslides due to heavy typhoons and earthquakes. Hydrometeorological risks are even made worse by climate change.  Man-made threats arise from the deterioration of watersheds due to deforestation and change in land use whose root cause is human incursion into what used to be pristine ecosystems coupled by unsustainable livelihoods of local communities in order to address poverty.  In some cases overextraction of groundwater, made worse by the gradual disappearance of natural recharge areas due to land use change, is also a major threat especially in the communities where surface water sources are unavailable or undeveloped.  

The company continually implements programs on existing water sources to address these risks.  However, it must be acknowledged that the underlying causes of these risks are complex, deeply rooted and interweaved with the overall issues faced by society:  population growth, poverty, migration, the need for livelihood, inadequate education, land use change and lack of enforcement.  While Manila Water crafts and implements interventions to mitigate these risks, palpable success can only be realized through strong partnerships with key actors such as water regulators, national agencies, local governments, civil society and most importantly the residents of the communities that live within and in the vicinity of the water sources.

To manage critical watersheds, continuous forest protection and rehabilitation were undertaken through enrichment planting in 40 hectares in La Mesa Watershed and tree nurturing by volunteers in about 5 hectares in Ipo Watershed.

The operations of the La Mesa Watershed is not part of the company’s service obligations but Manila Water is closely monitoring the dialogue between the public water utility and the national environmental regulator and is ready to cooperate on matters that would ensure the long-term protection of the water source.

In addressing both hydrometeorological and geological risks, Manila Water commissioned a natural calamity assessment study on the Umiray and Ipo Dam facilities to earthquake, flooding and typhoons as well as the structural and hydraulic conveyance capacity assessment of the aqueducts from Ipo. These studies will serve as a guide in the rehabilitation and improvement of these vital water source facilities.

Boracay Water obtains its raw water from the pristine Nabaoy River that is now being threatened by a road development, land use change and tourism.   The regional office of the DENR tasked the water utility to help preserve the river and protect the 10,000 hectares of the Nabaoy Watershed.   The convening of a watershed council is currently being worked upon.  In 2015, five thousand trees were planted by the water utility in the Nabaoy area.

Cebu Water, as a bulk water provider for metropolitan Cebu, sources its raw water from Luyang River in Carmen municipality that is fed by a watershed that is privately owned and is subject to land use change and presence of informal dwellers.  Nevertheless, the concessionaire commits to make the river a sustainable source of water for Cebu to ease the salt water intrusion and depletion of groundwater reserves in the metropolis due to over-extraction.  To ensure the continued good quality of raw water, the subsidiary coordinates with the local government on regulating human activities in the watershed.

Both Laguna Water and Clark Water source 100 percent of their raw water from groundwater sources and springs.

Greening of the watersheds and the facilities of subsidiaries is important to Manila Water. Employees and other stakeholders are encouraged to plant and nurture trees to show their commitment to the environment.

The Matang Tubig Spring currently provides only 7 percent of the total production of Laguna Water, with the rest provided by deepwells across the service area that were turned over by subdivision developers to the water utility.  Laguna Water commissions a study every 3 years to assess the groundwater capacity of the aquifer in the area of Cabuyao, Binan and Sta. Rosa.  The latest completed study indicated that the groundwater reserves in the area will be responsive to the needs of the customers for several decades to come, but some assumptions, such as land use patterns and the impact on groundwater recharge rates, need to be continuously revalidated.  A new groundwater study is due for commencement by the World Wildlife Fund, with results expected to be released in the following year.

In order to augment the existing groundwater sources of Clark Water, the subsidiary has commissioned feasibility studies on getting raw water from surface water sources. Two production wells located along and are being continuously replenished by the Sacobia River are already operational and more wells are scheduled to be established along the riverbank.

The aggregated water abstraction of all Philippine operations of the company increased by 4 percent due to population growth, increase in the number of water service connections and the commissioning of Cebu Water which had its ‘first water’ in January 2015 and ramped up its production rate from 18 mld to 24 mld in just three months due to additional unscheduled demand from its bulk-water customer.  All extractions were within the limits of the water permits issued by the National Water Resources Board.

Manila Water has a mandate to expand its water and used water service coverage, particularly to areas in Rizal where customers live further and at higher elevations. Expansion would mean higher production, pumping and treatment costs and with the Company's intensified sanitation and sewerage program it is expected that overall operational expenditures will keep increasing. Thus, the Company continuously implements innovative practices and adopts new technologies to bring down costs and improve operational efficiency.

The Metro Manila concession and Clark Water have embedded into their operations an Integrated Management System (IMS) which include quality, environment and health and safety management systems.  For the Metro Manila concession, ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 certifications for 17 operating facilities were sustained in 2015, although the IMS is in fact implemented across the entire operations group, irrespective of whether some facilities are certified or not.  In addition, ten facilities in Metro Manila are ISO 5001-certified on Energy Management Systems.  Manila Water closely manages and monitors the efficiency performance of all its facilities by ensuring proper maintenance of equipment, optimum use of chemicals and energy and continually looks for technical innovations that will yield higher productivity with lesser inputs.

The year 2015 was another banner year for innovations work in Manila Water.  Ideas turned to value and innovations resulted in over ₱250 million (2013-2015) in cumulative sustainable gains. Collaboration was vibrant among internal teams; communities of innovators were engaged for sustained innovations in processes, technology and services. Moving forward, more innovations will revolve around sustainable water supply and used water as a resource. Ultimately, the company aspires to roll out systems that will harness renewable energy from operating assets and byproducts thereby strengthening operational and environmental sustainability.

Distribution of Water Abstraction





Metro Manila East Zone 99.85% 99.87% 99.86%
Boracay Water 100% 100% 100%
Cebu Water     100%





Metro Manila East Zone 0.15% 0.13% 0.14%
Boracay Water 100% 100% 100%
Cebu Water 100% 100% 100%

Operational control ensures optimized use of resources in Manila Water facilities.

Non-revenue water
Manila Water is known worldwide in water utility circles as a company that has succeeded in solving water shortages through the reduction of system losses not only in the East Zone but as well as in all subsidiaries it took over.   For the past 18 years in Metro Manila’s East Zone, the improvement in water availability as well as growth of new water service connections was largely due to the NRW reduction initiatives that resulted in more than 700 million liters of water saved per day, roughly equivalent to the output of a medium sized dam.  It will be noted that no major water source was developed for Metro Manila since it took over the system from MWSS, and yet better efficiencies in water distribution allowed the business to grow and serve more people.

The company’s NRW reduction programs across Metro Manila’s East Zone and the various subsidiaries incorporate a mix of technology and community partnership solutions to address losses in the water distribution system from pipe leaks and pilferages. In the Metro Manila concession, the company maintained a year end NRW of 11.2 percent in 2015, a slight improvement from 11.3 percent at the end of 2014.  It will be recalled that at the beginning of the concession in 1997, NRW was at an all-time high of 63 percent; two-thirds of the water coming from Angat never reached the customers.

 % Non-revenue water





East Zone 12.3% 11.3% 11.1%
Boracay Water 13.4% 17.2% 21.5%
Clark Water 6.0% 5.3% 4.5%
Laguna Water 18.0% 11.9% 11.5%

Laguna Water and Clark Water achieved end of year NRW levels of 11.5 percent and 4.5 percent, respectively.  It must be noted however that Cebu Water’s low level of losses is attributed to the fact that it is a bulk water provider to a water utility, not a direct distributor to consumers.  In 2015, the NRW level of Boracay Water increased to 21.5 percent  due to suspected commercial losses, meter tampering, illegal connections and leaks in aged pipes across the distribution system.  Boracay Water formed a DMA and dedicated NRW team to monitor and conduct leak repairs and meter replacements.

Manila Water’s partnership with the Zamboanga City Water District on a 10-year NRW reduction project commenced in June 2015.  The objective is to replicate the successes of the company’s NRW programs in the Philippines and Vietnam to enhance the water distribution efficiency of the local water utility and help recover enough water to serve the 40 percent waterless barangays in the city.  Project development work was mostly accomplished in the second semester of 2015; the actual benefits to customers are expected to be realized in 2016.

Consumption of treatment chemicals has been consistently decreasing year on year due to dose optimization initiatives in water treatment facilities, coupled by relatively favorable turbidity levels in the raw water sources across the year,  bringing a total savings of P8.77 million in 2015 for the Metro Manila East Zone’s water treatment operations.    

On the other hand, used water operations consumed more chemicals in 2015 due to the increase in chlorine doses as a result of adjustments recommended by a chlorine demand study to lessen the risk of coliforms exceedances, and an increase in polymer use as required by the increase in volumes of septage and excess sludge processed.  To prevent the clogging of pipelines due to excessive oil and grease discharges from tourism establishments, Boracay Water tested the use of enzymes in breaking down solidified deposits, effectively reducing sewer-related incidents.  In Metro Manila’s East Zone operations, a proposed policy requiring commercial establishments generating high strength used water to pre-treat their discharges has yet to be approved by the water regulator.  Full implementation of this policy should help address risks associated with excessive oil and grease that reaches the facilities.

Due to the increase in the volume of water supplied and used water collected and treated, electricity consumption increased in 2015 by 12 percent.  Total fuel consumption, however, decreased by 27 percent because there were less power outages during the year that would have required the operations of standby generator sets. The overall energy consumed by the enterprise in terms of Gigajoules increased by 7 percent.

Despite the increase in electricity consumption, Manila Water continuously implements several efficiency initiatives such as the maximization of the use of gravity lines in the distribution system, optimization of various processes and equipment, use of screw pumps and conversion of facilities to LED lighting, all of which contributed to an annual savings in power consumption by 1,509 megawatt-hours (MWh), equivalent to ₱12.5 million in 2015.

The Department of Energy recognized Manila Water’s energy efficiency initiatives by conferring the Don Emilio Efficiency Awards to four water supply facilities: the Balara, Kingsville, Siruna and San Juan Pumping Stations.  This is the second consecutive year that the award has been given to the company.

Just-In-Time and blower optimization projects in Clark Water saved the subsidiary some 270  MWh of power, corresponding to approximately ₱2 million in savings, while the identification of air pockets and bleeding of lines in Cebu Water provided savings of 577 MWh, equivalent to ₱4.3 million.

Laguna Water has developed plans to install solar panels with a capacity of 56 kWp, potentially generating 76,000 kWh annually, at the Laguna Technopark facilities of the subsidiary.  If the pilot initiative is proven successful, full scale implementation to realize the generation of 1 MW from solar power is envisioned for its Booster 3 facility, as well as all other booster stations and the LTI sewage treatment plant.

Notwithstanding the global reduction in oil prices which led to lower power costs, further reduction in electricity tariffs was also realized by the company through the enrolment of several facilities to Meralco’s Peak/Off Peak program, rate reclassification and the incorporation of improved back-up clauses in the Open Access Program, resulting in annual savings of around ₱800,000.

Carbon Emissions
Manila Water’s revised Climate Change Policy, although focused mainly on adaptation, also made commitments in addressing the carbon footprint of the company while it realizes growth of the business.  Its greenhouse gas reduction initiatives are totally aligned with the objective of managing the inputs of energy and fuel in order to improve cost efficiency in operations.  

In 2015, the company was a signatory to the Manila Declaration, the private sector’s response to the country’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction commitments indicated in the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions submitted to the United Nations for the Conference of Parties in Paris.  The Declaration manifested that the private sector has a large role in the execution of initiatives to ensure greenhouse gas emissions are controlled and reduced, but government has a role to fulfill in introducing an enabling environment for businesses to do their part.   The International Panel on Climate Change-derived methodology used by the Climate Change Commission in measuring the national greenhouse gas account points to used water treatment as the company’s key contribution in reducing the national carbon footprint (see boxed article).  Even if Manila Water reduced its power consumption, the real reduction in carbon emissions is under the control of the power generating organizations through their choice of energy sources.

Manila Water’s report on its carbon footprint conforms to the World Resources Institute’s Greenhouse Gas Accounting Protocol. The company’s report is based on operational boundaries, that is, it only reports on business units where the company has operational control.  Thus, only the carbon footprint of its Philippine operations is reported here, mainly from internal fuel consumption for direct carbon dioxide emissions (Scope 1) and electricity consumption for indirect carbon dioxide emissions (Scope 2).  Scope 3 from other indirect carbon emissions are due to business travels of employees and the fuel used by service providers in desludging of septic tanks. The enterprise’s Scope 1 carbon emissions decreased in 2015 as total fuel consumption dropped by 27% while Scope 2 carbon emissions increased, partly due to marginal increases in electricity consumption but primarily due to an adjusted higher emission factor applied to the Metro Manila East Zone as most of the energy it bought under the Open Access program is derived from fossil fuels. The Luzon grid’s energy mix is not within the control of the company.  Scope 3 emissions increased in 2015 due to the numbers of septic tanks desludged as well as business travels associated with managing the widely-spread subsidiaries as well as developing new businesses within and outside the Philippines.

Carbon Dioxide Emissions by Scope, in tons carbon dioxide equivalent

Total Carbon Footprint in tons CO2




Scope 1 2,568 4,192 3,056
Scope 2 67,267 84,696 100,633
Scope 3 171 1,102 1,559
Total 70,006 89,990 105,248

Note: Scope 1: Direct carbon dioxide emission from fuel use; Scope 2 – Indirect carbon dioxide emission from electricity use; Scope 3- indirect carbon dioxide emission from business travels and desludging of septic tanks by contractors. Scope 3 in 2013 only includes business travels.

Manila Water and the Philippines’ INDCs

At the 21st UN Conference of Parties (COP), culminating with the Paris Agreement of 2015, the countries of the world pledged their Intended Nationally Determined Contributions or INDCs. Each nation promised to work on individual targets at reducing carbon emissions, thus aimed at radically and collectively stopping the effects of climate change. The Philippines, being one of the most climate-vulnerable countries in the world, despite generating less than a half percent of the global production of greenhouse gases, made a commitment of reducing at least 70% of its carbon emissions by 2030.  This is intended to be delivered through interventions in the energy, transport, industry, forestry, agriculture and waste sectors.  

Manila Water’s key contribution to reducing the country’s carbon emissions is in the treatment of used water.  According to the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change and the Philippine Climate Change Commission, organic pollution left untreated is a potential methane source in the environment. It is be noted that methane has more than twenty times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide.  According to the 2006 guidelines issued by the Intergovernment Panel for Climate Change, for every kilogram of Biochemical Oxygen Demand (or BOD, a measure of organic pollution) that Manila Water diverts from waterways through full used water treatment instead of using septic tanks, an equivalent 6.3 kg of carbon dioxide is prevented from entering the atmosphere.  

For 2015, the aggregated greenhouse gas diversion accomplishment of Manila Water was 52,470 tons of CO2 equivalent, due to the diversion of 8,329 tons of BOD from used water by the Metro Manila Concession, Boracay, Clark and Laguna subsidiaries.  This is 50 percent of the total carbon emissions attributed to Manila Water’s fuel and electricity consumption for all its water supply, used water and business operations. With the expansion of used water treatment capacity, as well as innovations in sludge management, power generation and power efficiency, there is a possibility that the enterprise can approach carbon neutral operations in the future.

Manila Water, in its revised Climate Change Policy, committed to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions through operational efficiency.  The company’s key response to climate change, however, revolves around climate change adaptation. This is with the goal of increasing the resilience of its assets and operations through the following: climate-smart planning and construction, business continuity frameworks, proactive water source management and partnerships with key stakeholders.   

SAFEGUARDING HEALTH AND SAFETY How we ensure clean water for all

The provision of water and used water services must at any time conform with mandated health standards. In support of the well known adage, ‘health is wealth’, the company understands that the provision of clean water results in healthy individuals who can lead productive lives.  

Manila Water and its operating subsidiaries in the Philippines and Vietnam have an unwavering commitment to 100% compliance with the national drinking standards.  In the year 2015, there have been no exceedances of contaminant limits in any regulatory samples for all aforementioned business units.  Occasional reports of dirty water received from customers were isolated cases, mostly associated with pipe breakage and repair activities.     

Manila Water is among the pioneering water operators in the Philippines in developing a Water Safety Plan (WSP) that addresses water quality risks throughout the water value chain. The development and implementation of the WSP has helped Manila Water design and execute a holistic quality assurance program in its various supply systems from catchment to customers’ taps.  An important tool provided by the 2009 Water Safety Plan is the Alert matrix System where parameters were established as thresholds. Beyond the threshold, it will have to be communicated or escalated to proper authorities so the appropriate actions or protocols can be immediately implemented. Alert ratings (green, yellow, red) will be vary depending on the impact, coverage and severity of the anomaly. This alert system triggers plant operators to immediately carry out necessary preventive and corrective actions.

Monitoring of critical operational parameters such as turbidity, pH and residual chlorine at the facilities are also improved through an established frequency of monitoring and centralized reporting.  The reliability of instrument readings are improved through regular maintenance and calibration.  In addition, the creation of documented standard operating procedures, records and technical bulletins allow the WSP team members to share and institutionalize best practices and promote their application across all water supply systems. The Metro Manila East Zone’s WSP underwent a comprehensive review in 2015 as a manifestation of the company’s commitment to continuing improvement.   

With stringent operational controls as a result of the WSP exercises, Manila Water has consistently achieved 100% compliance to the standards set by the Philippine National Standards for Drinking Water. Data from the Department of Health suggests a continuous reduction in diarrhea cases in the East Zone of Metro Manila as water supply coverage of depressed communities improve.  Diarrhea cases dropped from 1.55 % in 2000 to 0.33% in 2012 and even lower to about 0.2% in 2014.  The WSP is also instrumental in prioritizing CAPEX improvement projects such as building new infrastructures, upgrading of facilities and equipment replacement that are expected to address identified risks and enable better customer service and improved public health.

In 2015, Boracay Water was the first of the subsidiaries to complete a Water Safety Plan, covering contamination threats from Nabaoy River all the way to the customer’s taps in Boracay Island.

This was made possible by technical assistance from the World Health Organization and the Department of Health (DOH) which handpicked Boracay Water as part of a bigger program on water security and safety for tourism areas in the Philippines. The Boracay Water experience in WSP preparation, along with that of Manila Water’s East Zone is being used by DOH to be some of the models for WSP capacity building for the rest of the country’s water service providers.   Because the DOH has issued an administrative order mandating all water utilities to submit WSPs in the next three years, it is expected that the other subsidiaries of Manila Water will commence in developing their respective WSPs shortly.

The Manila Water East Zone commenced in 2015 the preparation of a Sanitation Safety Plan (SSP) which, aims to identify risks to health and safety in the course of providing wastewater and sanitation services.  The guidelines from the Department of Health were not yet available at the time but the company deemed it proper to start work on the SSP because it has one of the biggest operations of septic tank desludging and used water treatment in the country.  Although there are already environmental and health safeguards in place since the company upscaled its septic tank desludging operations after the facilities under the Manila Third Sewerage Project were completed in 2007, the SSP aims to take another look at the potential health risks associated with the transport and reuse or conversion of used water biosolids for agriculture use.

Manila Water’s Healthy Family brand has made great strides in expanding the scope of its advocacy since it was launched in the second half of 2014.  At the end of that year, there were 6,215 regular customers, but by the end of 2015, there were 36,314 families in Metro Manila who have participated in the advocacy for healthy living through the consumption of water that is proven to be clean and potable, as opposed to the prevailing lack of quality control and assurance among thousands of small-scale and poorly-regulated water refilling stations around the country.  Manila Water maintains its advocacy for drinking from the tap in all of its service areas, as it assures the customers that the quality of the water passes the drinking water standards all the way to the water meter.  However, some customers have an aversion to the mandatory residual levels of chlorine in tap water, and there are households where the internal piping system are antiquated and rusty.  In response to the sentiments and demand of these customers, the Healthy Family concept was developed.  

Manila Water has a long running commitment to the welfare and safety of its employees, business partners as well as the general public.  The company has a comprehensive set of initiatives to assess the workplace environment, train employees and contractors on safety behavior and work procedures, sharing of best practices, and ensure compliance with internal and external safety standards through audits and recognition programs.     

The company’s employee safety capacity building program in 2015 consisted of modules covering the Safe Systems of Work basic standard, safety behavior, safety audits, chemical management, traffic management and those specific to utilities such as underground and confined spaces.  A total of 385 employees were involved, with a total of 5,308 man-hours training.

The full compliance to safety protocols at the workplace is observed.

The safety culture has to be maintained in all workplace whether you are an employee, a contractor or a vendor.  To be updated and compliant to standards, a Safety Officers Network has been established. This network provides a venue for coordination and collaboration of all safety officers  coming  from Manila Water, Contractors and Vendors. In 2015, the topics discussed during the networking involves promotion not only safety but also health in every workplace. The company also conducted a benchmarking program for contractors showcasing their good safety practices.  The objective is to provide an opportunity for workers from one construction site to learn best practices from the others.

For a culture of safety to be embedded across the organization, the Manila Water Operations’ safety team regularly visits the Philippine subsidiaries to undertake safety audits and identify areas for improvement.

As of the end of 2015, the entire enterprise, covering both its Philippine and Vietnam operations, logged a total of 6,655,569 safe manhours.  There were no significant lost-time accidents for the entire year of 2015.

Contributing to local and National Economies How our water and used water services become an economic enabler for all

Manila Water’s contribution to the local and national economies is profound and wide-reaching. This is primarily manifested through enhancing the productivity of each customer or family through access to clean water, the provision of livelihood opportunities to the company’s employees and indirectly to people in the supply chain and its business partners. Manila Water’s impact is then evident as well in the infusion of capital into the general economy through investments in water and used water infrastructure.

Water is a lifeline not just for human lives and communities but also for businesses and the general economy.   People with access to clean, reliable and affordable water supply generally live healthy and productive lives and this can be correlated to stable and improved livelihoods.   The company’s frontliners have received information directly from its customers, especially from the poor communities of stories when small businesses such as neighborhood carinderia (food stalls) and laundry services were established and flourished, because water supply started to flow.  There are also stories of customers being able to realize savings from converting to piped-in water supply versus buying expensive vended water from vendors.

From the perspective of commercial and industrial customers, productivity cannot be held hostage by the poor reliability of water services and poor quality water.  Nearly a quarter of Metro Manila’s East Zone billed volume is consumed by the commercial and industrial sector, which in fact constitutes only roughly 5% of the total number of customers.  The company’s contribution to industrial growth is best exemplified by the Laguna and Clark subsidiaries where major industrial zones are served.  Boracay’s tourism potential is realized, even beyond the island’s physical carrying capacity. Water supply from the main island of Panay, and used water services were provided which help mitigate the island’s environmental degradation. This essential service further strengthens Boracay’s tourism industry.

In 2015, Manila Water has provided direct employment to 1,555 individuals in the Metro Manila’s East Zone and its subsidiaries across the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia.

Out of its pool of business partners, the company has in 2015 provided business opportunities to 195 material suppliers, 37 construction contractors, 27 consulting firms, and 148 service providers.  The accredited vendor pool is shared among the Metro Manila East Zone and the Philippine subsidiaries as well as other companies in the Ayala Group.  There is an ongoing initiative to establish a system for estimating the number of jobs created by these businesses through their engagements with Manila Water and its subsidiaries, but it is reasonable to assert that the company indirectly provides thousands of job opportunities through the supply chain, much more than those who are employed directly.   To help embed the principles of sustainability across its supply chain, Manila Water has incorporated social and environmental elements in its vendor accreditation process, and many of its contractors participated in the company’s award-winning Greening the Supply Chain program, eventually winning awards themselves on their own terms.

Manila Water continues to engage small and medium enterprises as part of its supply chain, some of which the company helped establish from customer communities belonging to the bottom of the pyramid.  These vendors provide the company and its contractors goods such as fabricated meter protectors, bollards, project signages, corporate giveaways and services such as vehicle washing.  The ‘Junk for Joy’ recycling program also partners with local junk shops that buy the recyclables contributed by company employees.

By the end of 2015, Manila Water Total Solutions’ Healthy Family bottled water brand had engaged a total of 206 distributors consisting of small businesses, mostly of the single proprietorship mode.  This is a massive growth from only 6 distributor partners at the end of 2014. It is expected that 200 more business partners will be developed in 2016 to cater to the creation of more distribution territories beyond the Metro Manila East Zone.  When Healthy Family operations commenced in the second half of 2014, it had only a single facility with a production capacity of 300 bottles per hour.   By the end of 2015, three new facilities were established, increasing total production capacity to 3,900 bottles per hour.  

Manila Water, as a major player in the water space in the Philippines and Vietnam, has invested large sums into the development, construction, operation and maintenance of water and used water infrastructure in the communities it serves.

These infrastructure investments are necessary to be able to deliver on the company’s service obligations to its customers: expand the reach of its quality services at optimal use of inputs.  As is common with social and environmental investments by government, some initiatives like used water projects are justified not because of cash flow from sewer charges, but on economic terms such as the enhancement of ecosystem services like food provision, disaster resiliency, and improvement in land value. In summary, Manila Water’s investments in the water sector contribute to the general well-being of the communities it serves, helping people maximize their full potential, thus enhancing sustainable development. As a lifeline, the demand for water and used water services will always be certain. The interdependence between Manila Water and its customers is sustainability at its core.


2015 CAPEX Disbursements in the philippines  (in pesos)

Manila Water East Zone 4,224 M
Clark Water 314 M
Laguna Water 765 M
Boracay Island Water 315 M
Cebu Water 113  M
TOTAL 5,731 M


General Manager of JB Cresta Corporation
Angeles, Pampanga

JB Cresta has been a locator of Clark Water for 8 years, and we are in the business of construction and development.  We improve land and build residences for rent or sale. Phase One of our projects are 80% completed, and Clark Water has been a very good provider of water service. As a business partner, I’m very satisfied. Clark Water personnel are very kind and always ready to give support. Clark Water is very willing to give time to their customers, to listen and respond whenever there is an issue.

In my country, I have seen that employees in government agencies treat the citizens very well. I cannot say the same with the service by corporations. However, in my experience with Clark Water, although it is part of a private corporation, it gives its clients excellent service.

Water pressure has been a problem in the area. There was a time that we didn’t have water here for nearly one month. I know that it is caused by many different factors, but I believe that Clark Water is doing their best to address the concern and has listened to us. The issues on water that our company encountered here can also happen in other areas. But I am satisfied with how Clark Water has cared for us as a partner.

JB Cresta will be developing three more phases within Clark. The company will continue to expand its projects, and provide jobs. Water will be a very important utility for our construction operations and eventually, when we rent out or sell the units we have built. We look forward to a lasting partnership with Clark Water.


General Standard Disclosures

Section or sub-section, page/s

Addressed ISO 26000 Core Issues

G4-1 Chairman’s Message, 9 4.7 Respect for international norms of behavior
6.2 Organizational Governance
7.4.2 Setting the direction of an organization for social responsibility
G4-2 Materiality, 38
Enterprise Risk Management, 110, 118
G4-3 Back cover 6.3.10 Fundamental principles and rights at work
6.4.1-6.4.2 Labor practices
6.4.3 Employment and employment relationships
6.4.4 Conditions of work and social
6.4.5 Social dialogue
6.8.5 Employment creation and skills and development
7.8 Voluntary initiatives for social responsibility
G4-4 2015 Year In Review, 4-5
G4-5 Back cover
G4-6 2015 Year In Review, Triple Bottomline, 4-7
G4-7 Ownership structure, 9
G4-8 2015 Year In Review, 4-5, 49
G4-9 Developing Our Employees 43
G4-10 Developing Our Employees 43
G4-11 15% of Manila Water employees are covered by
collective bargaining agreement
G4-12 Contributing to Local and National Economies, 74 - 75
G4-13 Triple Bottomline, 6-7, 20-31
Helping Build Communities, 47
G4-14 Sustainability at Manila Water, 34
G4-15 Stakeholder Engagement, 39-40
G4-16 Awards, Citation and Affiliations, 76
G4-17 Financial Report, 136 5.2 Recognizing social responsibility
7.3.2 Determining relevance and significant core subjects and issues to an organization
7.3.3 An organization’s sphere of influence
7.3.4 Establishing priorities for addressing issues
G4-18 Our Sustainability Policy and Commitments, 37-38  
G4-19 Materiality, 38
G4-20 Materiality, 38
G4-21 Materiality, 38
G4-22 2015 Year In Review, 4-5
G4-23 2015 Year In Review, 4-5
G4-24 Stakeholder Engagement, 39 - 40 5.3 Stakeholder identification and engagement
G4-25 Stakeholder Engagement, 39 - 40
G4-26 Stakeholder Engagement, 39 - 40
G4-27 Stakeholder Engagement, 39 - 40
G4-28 2015 Year In Review, 4-5
Materiality, 38
7.5.3 Types of communication on social responsibility
7.6.2 Enhancing the credibility of report and claims about social responsibility
G4-29 Materiality, 38
G4-30 Materiality, 38
G4-31 Corporate Information
G4-32 Materiality, 38
G4-33 Not Applicable
G4-34 Corporate Governance Report, 98-101 6.2 Organizational governance
7.4.3 Building social responsibility into an organization’s governance, systems and procedures
7.7.5 Improving performance
G4-35 Corporate Governance Report, 98-101  
G4-36 Corporate Governance Report, 98-101
G4-38 Board of Directors
G4-39 Corporate Governance Report, 102
G4-40 Corporate Governance Report, 101
G4-43 Corporate Governance Report, 102
G4-44 Risk Management Report, 119
G4-45 Risk Management Report, 118
G4-46 Risk Management Report, 119
G4-47 Risk Management Report, 119
G4-48 Risk Management Report, 119-121
G4-56 Vision, Mission and Corporate Objectives, 106 - 112 4.4 Ethical behavior
6.6.3 Anti-corruption


G4-ECI – 74-75 6.8.1-6.8.2 Community involvement and development;
6.8.3 Community Involvement,
6.8.7 Wealth and income creation
6.8.9 Social Investment
G4-EC2 – 52-53, 62 6.5.5 Climate change mitigation and adaptation
G4-EC3 –42 6.8.7 Wealth and income creation
Reason for omission: Manila Water does
not receive financial assistance from the
government. In fact, the company, through
MWSS is paying concession fees to service
its existing loans through the MWSS
G4-EC7 – 4-5, 49, 56, 74-75 6.3.9 Economic, social and cultural rights;
6.8.1-6.8.2 Community involvement and development;
6.8.7 Wealth and income creation;
6.8.9 Social Investment
G4-EC8 – 4, 5, 49, 56, 74-75 6.3.9 Economic, social and cultural rights;
6.6.6. Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
6.6.7 Respect for property rights
6.7.8 Access to essential services
6.8.1 – 6.8.2 Community Involvement and development
6.8.5 Employment creation and skills development
6.8.7 Wealth and income creation
6.8.9 Social investment
G4-DMA – 109- 110  
G5-EC4 – 138 6.4.3. Employment and employment relationships
6.6.6. Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
6.8.1 – 6.8.2 Community involvement and development
6.8.7. Wealth and income creation
MATERIALS G4-DMA – 64-65  
G4-EN1 – 67 6.5.4 Sustainable resource use
ENERGY G4-DMA – 67-68  
G4-EN3 – 67 6.5.4 Sustainable resource use
G4-EN6 – 66-67 6.5.4. Sustainable resource use
6.5.5 Climate change mitigation and adaptation
WATER G4-DMA – 65-67  
G4-EN8 – 66 6.5.4. Sustainable resource use
G4-EN15 – 71
G4-EN16 – 71
G4-EN19 – 71
6.5.5 Climate change mitigation and adaptation
G4-EN22 – 62-63  
G4-EN23 – 60-63 6.5.3 Prevention of pollution
6.5.4. Sustainable resource use
G4-EN24 – No significant spills 6.5.3 Prevention of pollution
G4-EN26 – 57-58 6.5.3 Prevention of pollution
6.5.4. Sustainable resource use
6.5.6 Protection of the environment, biodiversity and restoration of natural habitats
COMPLIANCE G4-DMA – Manila Water ensures that
it is consistently compliant with all
environmental regulations.
4.6 Respect for the rule of law
G4-EN29 – No significant fines paid  
G4-DMA – 74  
G4-EN33 – 74 6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.6.6 Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
7.3.1 Due diligence
G4-DMA – 56  
G4-EN34-No formal grievance filed 6.3.6 Resolving grievances
G4-LA1 – 42 6.4.3 Employment and employment relationships
G4-LA2 - 42 6.4.4 Conditions of work and social protection
6.8.7. Wealth and income creation
G4-DMA – 34 - 37  
G4-LA9 – 45 6.4.6 Health and safety at work
6.8.8 Health
G4-DMA – 42-46  
G4-LA9 – 43 6.4.7 Human development and training in the workplace
G4-DMA – 42  
G4-LA12 – 43 6.2.3 Decision-making processes and structures
6.3.7 Discrimination and vulnerable groups
6.3.10 Fundamental principles and rights at work
6.4.3 Employment and employment relationships
G4-DMA – 111-112  
G4-LA14 – 109-112 6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.4.3 Employment and employment relationships
6.6.6 Promoting and responsibility in the value chain
7.3.1 Due diligence
G4-LA15 – 173  
G4-DMA – 173  
G4-LA16- No formal grievance/s filed 6.3.6 Resolving grievances
G4-HR3 – No incidence reported 6.3.6 Resolving grievances
6.3.7 Discrimination and vulnerable groups
6.3.10 Fundamental principles and rights at work
6.4.3 Employment and employment relationships
G4-HR5 – No incidence reported 6.3.3 Due diligence
6.3.4 Human rights risk situations
6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.3.7 Discrimination and vulnerable groups
6.3.10 Fundamental  principles and rights at work
6.6.6 Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
6.8.4 Education and culture
G4-DMA – 42  
G4-HR6- No incidence reported 6.3.3 Due diligence
6.3.4 Human rights risk situations
6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.3.7 Discrimination and vulnerable groups
6.3.10 Fundamental  principles and rights at work
6.6.6 Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
G4-HR7 – 95% of security personnel assigned in Manila Water have been
through human rights trainings on policies and procedures
6.3.4 Human rights risk situations
6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.6.6 Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
G4-HR8 – No incidence reported
6.3.4 Human rights risk situations
6.3.6 Resolving grievances
6.3.7 Discrimination and vulnerable groups
6.3.8 Civil and political rights
6.6.7 Respect for property
6.8.3 Community involvement
G4-HR8- No incidence reported
6.3.3 Due diligence
6.3.4 Human rights risk situations
6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.6.6. Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
G4-SO1 – 39-40 6.3.9 Economic, social and cultural rights
6.5.1-6.5.2 The environment
6.5.3 Prevention of pollution
6.8 Community involvement and development
G4-SO5 – No incidence reported 6.6.1-6.6.2 Fair operating practices
6.6.3 Anti-corruption
PUBLIC POLICY G4-DMA – 106-114  
G4-SO6 – No contributions made to any
political parties
6.6.1-6.6.2 Fair operating practices
6.6.4 Responsible political involvement
G4-DMA – 107-110  
G4-SO8 – No significant fines and sanction
for non-compliance
6.6.1-6.6.2 Fair operating practices
6.6.5 Fair competition
6.6.7 Respect for property rights
COMPLIANCE G4-DMA – 106-114  
G4-SO7 – No legal actions were filed against Manila Water 4.6 Respect for the rule of law
G4-DMA – 112  
G4-SO9 – All new suppliers are screened 6.3.5 Avoidance of complicity
6.6.1-6.6.2 Fair operating practices
6.6.6 Promoting social responsibility in the value chain
6.8.1-6.8.2 Community involvement and development
7.3.1 Due diligence
G4-DMA – 39  
G4-SO11 – No formal grievance/s filed 6.3.6 Resolving grievances
6.6.1-6.6.2 Fair operating practices
6.8.1-6.8.2 Community involvement and development
G4-PR1 – 72 -73 6.7.1 – 6.7.2 Consumer issues
6.7.4 Protecting consumers’ health and safety
6.7.5 Sustainable consumption
6.8.8. Health
G4-PR2 – No incidents reported 4.6 Respect for the rule of law
6.7.1-6.7.2 Consumer issues
6.7.4 Protecting consumers’ health and safety
6.7.5 Sustainable consumption
6.8.8 Health
Employee Engagement, 42    
Customer Service, 49-50    
Service Coverage, 49    
Business Continuity, 52    
Climate Change Adaptation, 36, 68    
Billed volume, 5    
Non-revenue water, 4    
Environmental Education, 45-46    
Environmental Advocacy, 56, 61-62