PROTECTING LAKE BATO
DENR-Region 5 Executive Director Gilbert C. Gonzales signs in the Covenant for Lake Bato Conservation Project being implemented by Camarines Sur provincial government, manifesting full support to the project, which seeks not only to conserve the country’s 7th largest freshwater lake but also to improve the plight of some 34,000 fishermen in the 16 lakeside barangays of Bato town. Gonzales told the residents during the covenant signing that adopting best practices in household waste management as mandated under Republic Act No. 9003 would have immediate positive impact on the lake’s health as pollution-causing substances have already been minimized, if not eliminated, at source. He also stressed the role of Lake Bato in biodiversity conservation as it also serves as habitat for endemic birds, fish and plant species.
More than 13,000 migratory birds counted in Region 11
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has counted more than 13,000 migratory birds last January in Davao region, comprising mostly of Little Egret, Black-winged Stilt, Whimbreal and Common Tern.
Of the total, 4,699 birds were found in Malalag, Davo del Sur; 4,848 in Carmen, Davao del Norte; and 3,500 birds in Banaybanay in Davao Oriental.
The bird count was part of the Annual Asian Waterfowl Census (AWC) which seeks to obtain information on the population of migratory birds in wetlands, as well as to monitor on an annual basis, the status and condition of wetlands. Initiated in the Indian subcontinent in 1987, the bird census has grown rapidly covering more than 32 countries worldwide today.
According to the National Wetlands Program, many species of waterbirds fly in droves during winter to go to warmer and more hospitable tropics, such as the Philippines, in search for food. Afterwhich, they go back to their country of origin in summer.
The Philippines is part of the East Asian Flyway. A total of 77 species of migratory birds use this flyway annually, making one of the most important flyways in the world.
Local movie industry’s ‘bad boy’ turns ‘green’
Philippine cinema’s ‘bad boy’ Robin Padilla and brother Royette have thrown their support to the National Greening Program (NGP) by signing a memorandum of agreement with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Region 3 for the reforestation of some 200 hectares of denuded forestland in Bamban town in Tarlac.
Signing the agreement for the DENR was Region 3 Executive Director Maximo Dichoso, while the Padilla brothers signed for Utopia International Inc., a non-government organization based in Angeles City which is being headed by Royette.
Under the agreement, Utopia and the DENR shall partner with the Bamban Aeta Tribal Association (Bata), represented by its chairman Oscar Rivera, in setting up a nursery and forest plantations for the next three years inside the Aeta tribesmen’s ancestral domain.
Dichoso said Utopia will provide funds to support and sustain the reforestation effort while Bata shall raise the required 100,000 indigenous forest tree seedlings under the technical guidance of the DENR. “This reforestation project is not only beneficial to our environment amid the threats of climate change but also to the Aeta community as this shall provide them additional source of income and livelihood,” he said.
Sofio Quintana, deputy director for forestry said the DENR will provide technical assistance, particularly on nursery operation, plantation development, to ensure the survival of newly planted seedlings.
Last year, the DENR has planted 21,135 hectares of denuded forest and watershed areas throughout Central Luzon, bringing the total number of rehabilitated areas under the NGP to 72,163 hectares since the program’s launching in 2011 by Pres. Aquino III. This year, DENR regional office is set to reforest another 20,885 hectares in CL, Quintana said.
MARIKINA SUPPORTS NGP
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) continues to draw support from local government for its National Greening Program (NGP), with the recent signing of a memorandum of agreement between Assistant Secretary and concurrent Executive Director of DENR-National Capital Region Marcial Amaro (2nd from left) and Marikina City Vice Mayor Jose Fabian Cadiz (2nd from right) and Councilor and chair of Environment Protection Samuel Ferriol (left). The MOA calls for the DENR-NCR to provide appropriate seedlings to green Marikina’s barangays. Also in photo is DENR-NCR Forestry Technical Director Antonio Manila (extreme right).
NEW DENR BUILDING
The Bicol regional office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) starts the year right by opening its new building in Legazpi City to the public (inset). Photo shows Legazpi City Mayor Noel Rosal (right) and Guinobatan Mayor Glenda Ongjoco cut the ribbon during the building’s inauguration, as DENR Region 5 Executive Director Gilbert Gonzales (center) looks on in high spirit.
2013 MOST ECO-FRIENDLY UNIVERSITY
Dr. Jose Bacusmo (6th from left), president of the Visayas State University (VSU) in Baybay City, Leyte, together with some university officials, stands proud as he receives the plaque of recognition for his school having been declared as the “most sustainable and eco-friendly university for 2013” during the awarding ceremony held recently at the SM City North in Quezon City. On hand to present the award and a cash prize of P50,000 to Bacusmo were representatives of agencies behind the 2013 National Search for Sustainable and Eco-Friendly Schools to include (from left): DENR-Environmental Management Bureau Director Juan Miguel Cuna, DENR Undersecretary Analiza Rebuelta Teh, Department of Education-National Capital Region Environmental Education Division head Victoria Mayo, and Commissioner of Higher Education and National Board of Judges chair Ruperto Sangalang. Representatives of partner companies, namely One Meralco Foundation Program Officer Eddielyn Addun (right) and Nestle Philippines Vice President and Corporate Environment Officer Engr. Jesus Reyes (3rd from right) also graced the event.
DBP FOREST PROJECT IN MASBATE
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has signed an agreement with the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) and the municipal government of Cawayan, Masbate for a 50-hectare tree planting project at Naro Island Protected Area in support of the government’s National Greening Program (NGP) and as a climate change mitigation strategy. The DBP Forest Project, covered by a grant of P1.5 million from the bank, will be implemented in four barangays in Naro Island. Signing the MOA for their respective agencies are (from left): DENR-Region 5 Technical Director for Forestry Felix Mendoza, Cawayan Mayor Edgar Condor, and DBP Executive President Benel Lagua.
FURNITURE DONATION TO CAMP CRAME HIGH SCHOOL
Regional Executive Director Neria A. Andin (right) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-National Capital Region (DENR-NCR) awards the Deed of Donation of serviceable office tables and chairs to Ms. Angeline T. Torres, principal of Camp Crame High School in Quezon City. Ms. Torres expressed appreciation for the goodwill and for the assistance given by the DENR in their school’s environment projects. Other DENR officials on hand to witness the awarding held at Andin’s office at the National Ecology Center on East Avenue, Quezon City are (from left): Division chiefs Jan Bautista and Clemencia Marquez and Land Management Services Technical Director Art Fadriquela.
HANDOG TITULO IN LA UNION
Happiness and hopes are written all over the faces of some of the 84 residents of Luna, La Union province awarded with free land patents by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in simple ceremonies held at the town’s People’s Hall. DENR provincial chief Samuel Songcuan (in light green polo) said that ‘Handog Titulo’ is a priority program of the DENR that seeks to facilitate the government’s land distribution program. The awarded free patents, covering a total area of 5.02 hectares, are situated in 17 barangays of Luna, namely: Ayaoan, Barrientos, Busel-busel, Magsiping, Nagrebcan, Sucoc Norte, Oaqui No. 2, Bungro, Darigayos, Oaqui No. 3, Rimos No. 4, Barangobong, Sto. Domingo Norte, Sucoc Norte, Tallaoen, Pila and Victoria.
JOINT ANTI-ILLEGAL LOGGING DRIVE IN QUEZON
Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) – Regional Executive Director (RED) for CALABARZON Reynulfo Juan (2nd from left) has signed a memorandum of agreement on joint monitoring and checkpoints with DENR-RED for Bicol Gilbert Gonzales (2nd from left) in a move to strengthen the department’s campaign against illegal logging in Quezon province. The MOA signing was witnessed by DENR Undersecretary for Field Operations Demetrio Ignacio (right) and Forest Management Bureau Director Ricardo Calderon (left).