In Our Region

DENR-Region 6

Stakeholders discuss how to sustain a garbage-free Boracay 

R6 garbage free boracay web


About a hundred people representing various stakeholder groups in Boracay attended the 3-day action planning workshop on solid waste management organized by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) at Boracay Tropics Hotel in Boracay Island, Aklan.

“It is important that the people of Boracay Island know the problems being faced by the island in terms of solid waste, as they are also the one to identify and implement the possible solutions to the problem because it is their community. The government is just here to guide and provide them with technical assistance,” said Valentin P. Talabero, DENR- Aklan’s Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer.

Among the activities undertaken during the workshop include the identification of existing problems on solid waste management and brainstormed on the immediate as well as on long term solutions.

The workshop was capped with series of Focus Group Discussions with the three barangay councils of Yapak, Bulabog and Manoc-manoc, including some residents, on how to go about implementing their respective Action Plans. They are set to present their respective action plans before the local government of Malay for financial support.

The workshop was organized by the DENR’s Tayo ang Kalikasan, a task force created to undertake social mobilization campaigns under the Program for Environment and Natural Resources Restoration, Rehabilitation, and Development (PRRD). ### 




DENR-Region 2

Cimatu to strengthen DENR frontliners

Cimatu photo in action web


Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu has vowed to strengthen the field offices of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) with additional manpower, even as he instructed all Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices (CENROs) nationwide to strictly enforce environmental laws.

Cimatu made the statement during his visit to CENRO Sanchez Mira, Cagayan province on Sunday, Oct. 28.

“You are the frontline in the implementation of environment and natural resources programs, and in the enforcement of environmental laws,” he told the officials and employees of DENR Region 2, adding that he had “high regard” for CENROs in solving environmental problems in the country.

According to DENR chief, he will continue to work for the strengthening of the CENROs by increasing the number of personnel who will enforce and monitor compliance with the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act and Ecological Solid Waste Management Act, the top priority programs of the DENR under his watch.

In 2017, the DENR had hired lawyers who were deployed in every CENRO and implementing PENROs.

This year, the Environmental Management Bureau and Mines and Geosciences Bureau, both are line agencies under the DENR, have assigned environmental management officers, geologists and mining engineers at the DENR field offices.

The DENR Secretary has also reiterated his marching order to ensure that all rivers should be clean. “If the river is dirty, the CENR officer is not doing his job. You should mobilize the community to ensure the cleanliness of our rivers,” Cimatu told the CENR officers.

He praised Region 2 for having clean rivers and for its compliance with environmental laws.

The field officials were also instructed to work closely with local chief executives in putting up sanitary landfills as he ordered that dump sites should never be allowed.

Cimatu stressed that forest protection should be intensified by preventing trees from being cut. He also announced his plan to recruit “environmental cadets” who will become assistant CENR officers. “Qualified personnel should pass the entrance examination and will undergo training at the ENR Academy in Carranglan, Nueva Ecija,” he said.

Still along this line, the DENR has embarked this year on a comprehensive training program to hone the executive leadership and administrative competencies of DENR’s frontline officers, called the “Environment and Natural Resources Learning Program” or ELP.

The ELP offers three modules consisting of ENR Management Course, ENR Leadership Course, and ENR Frontline Course.

So far, a total of 113 DENR frontline officers and personnel have undergone the ELP. Of these, 12 PENROS, 22 CENROS and three directors have completed the Environmental Management Course while 76 frontline personnel, consisting mostly of administrative and field rank-and-file workers completed the ENR Frontline Course.

The ELP draws it origin from the “UP Program for Environmental Governance” (UPPEG), an environmental governance program the DENR launched with the University of the Philippines in 2016.

Some 11 PENROs and 17 CENROs, including two senior foresters, finished UPPEG’s six-module program consisting of policy formulation and analysis, transformational leadership, conflict resolution, effective communication skills, resource mobilization for business development and networking, environmental management planning, and managing environmental risks and resiliency. ### 

DENR-Region 6

Be waste-free this Undas: DENR 6

R6 aklancemetery undas web


As Undas or Tigkalalag in the local dialect is approaching, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is calling on the public to observe this event without waste.

Echoing the call of DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu not to turn graveyards into dumps, Regional Executive Director (RED) for Western Visayas Jim O Sampulna urges local government units (LGUs) from the barangay level to the provincial level to heighten public awareness on the need to refrain from generating so much waste during the yearly celebration.

“We are calling on all LGUs in Western Visayas to be more responsible and proactive as they do their best to implement the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act or R.A. 9003. They must see to it that their constituents within their jurisdiction of authority adhere to sanitation rules,” RED Sampulna said.

“We hope that a heightened awareness on the possible wastage, especially food, will be kept in mind by everybody during this time. Let us be aware before we go to our respective family graves, except from candles and flowers, may we also bring with us our own garbage bags to put our trash into and not litter around,” he added.

RED Sampulna also asks for the cooperation of the local government units (LGUs) to practice and implement the Republic Act 9003 in memorial parks and public cemeteries, and strongly make it a habit to be clean throughout the days of the year.

DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu has made it clear in his top three priority programs the implementation of the three essential environmental laws, namely: Ecological Solid Waste Management (ESWM) Act of 2000 (R.A. 9003), Clean Air Act of 1999 (R.A. 8749) and Clean Water Act (R.A. 9275)./DENR6 





DENR- MGB 6 welcomes its new regional director

DENR MGB 6 welcomes its new regional director web


The regional office of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) in Iloilo City welcomed its new regional director “wholeheartedly”, assuring him of full support by the DENR family.

“We welcome RD (Roger) De Dios wholeheartedly in our region and will assure him that we will be with him through his journey here in Western Visayas. We are grateful that he will be sharing his expertise to make our region more responsive to mining concerns,” DENR 6 Regional Executive Director Jim O Sampulna said.

For his part, the new MGB chief said expressed his happiness to be assigned in Iloilo, as he feels “at home” because he understands the Ilongo dialect. De Dios hails from the neighboring province of Cebu.

During the turnover ceremony, De Dios immediately laid down his style of managing people. “I will never scold somebody because for me, we are all professionals. Few words are enough to let you realize when you make a mistake or you need to improve.”

He added that being in the government service for more than 35 years, he realized that “sometimes we cannot appease everyone. But we should serve the public properly.”

De Dios graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree of Mining Engineering from Cebu Institute of Technology. Prior to his new post, he was the regional director of MGB in Region 13 since 2012.

On hand to witness the turnover ceremony were DENR Assistant Secretary for Mining Concerns Nonita S. Caguioa, MGB Acting Assistant Director Atty. Danilo U. Uykieng and Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) 6 Regional Director Sophie T. Manuel. ### 




DENR-Region 6

DENR donates confiscated lumber to rebuild bridge in Antique 

R6 Antique Bridge web


The provincial office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Antique has donated some 650 board feet of confiscated lumber to repair the dilapidated running boards of Inabasan bridge in San Jose, Antique.

The DENR made the donation to add to the community’s lumber stock, which they have harvested from their own planted trees. Antique DENR–PENR Officer Andres T. Untal said however that the community lumber products were not enough to cover the wood requirements for the bridge’s running boards, prompting the DENR’s field office to provide additional lumber sourced from the confiscations of CENRO Belison.

DENR 6 Regional Executive Director Jim O Sampulna lauded the effort of the field offices in responding to the people’s cry for help.

Inabasan Bridge connects Barangay Inabasan to the town proper of San Jose, and the towns of Sibalom and Hamtic. ### 




DENR-Region 6

R.I.V.E.R.S for Life award to raise importance of rivers 

R6 RIVERS for life web


Rivers are the lifeblood of the Earth and of the human civilization. They act as drainage channels of surface waters, and carry water and nutrients through great distances. Rivers also serve as habitat and provide food to many organisms.

In the Philippines, there are 18 major river basins and 421 principal rivers. As of 2017, (337) of the total number of classified principal and small rivers are under Class C was put at 337. Class C means that the water is intended for fishery where propagation and growth of fish and other aquatic resources is feasible.

Due to threats from agricultural, domestic, industrial, negligence and mistreatment of the people to our rivers, only a few are considered healthy and sustainable.

Thus, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) launched the “Recognizing Individuals/Institutions towards Vibrant and Enhanced Rivers (R.I.V.E.R.S.) for Life Award” in July this year, which aims to raise awareness of the need to protect and conserve the rivers in the country.

The award was conceived to recognize the efforts of DENR’s field officials in implementing and enforcing environmental laws and other initiatives to protect rivers from pollution and other threats.

In order for a river to be considered in R.I.V.E.R.S for Life award, it should meet the following criteria: Aesthetic and Water Quality Improvement, Solid Waste Management, Partnership and Community Mobilization, Information and Education Campaign (IEC) and other activities interventions and innovations.

The contest is open to all incumbent Supervising and Implementing DENR’s provincial offices, together with their respective Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices (CENROs). The period of participation is for one year (July-May) and every year thereafter.

“This award is an inspiration to not only the people working towards the betterment of our rivers but also to inspire the public that rivers should be protected and conserved. We should have concerted efforts in order to assure their sustainability and bring back their true purpose,” said DENR 6 Regional Executive Director Jim O Sampulna.

The awarding of winners will be announced on June 10, 2019 during the DENR’s Anniversary Celebration. ### 





140 sacks of trash collected on El Nido beach 

trash collected on El Nido beach web


A total of 140 sacks of garbage were collected during a joint clean up operations led by the local office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Palawan on Friday.

DENR-MIMAROPA Director Henry Adornado said the heaps of garbage, believed to have originated from other countries based on the markings on the plastic bottles, were reportedly seen drifting at the Secret Lagoon in Miniloc Island, and were washed up to the shores of El Nido by the strong current brought about by the monsoon rains that prevailed over the province recently.

A waste classification report issued by the El Nido-Taytay Managed Resource Protected Area (ENTMRPA) indicated that majority of the garbage or 70% consisted of plastic bottles while 30% were a mix of Styrofoam, rubber scraps, plastic wrappers, nylon and other trash.

Despite the rough seas, Adornado mobilized additional teams to scour the beaches of Big Lagoon and Small Lagoon in Miniloc island, Natnat Beach in Cadlao Island, including the farther islands of Matinloc and Tapiutan.

“Since it is already rainy season, let us expect the accumulation of marine debris in the shorelines of Palawan and its islands. This should remind us that whatever we dumped in the oceans, will come back to us,” he said.

He then called on the public to diligently practice the 3Rs of ecological waste management - reduce, reuse, and recycle.

Adornado attributed the success of the clean-up operations to the cooperation extended by representatives of other government offices and the private sector, notably the Philippine Coast Guard, the local government unit of El Nido, the El Nido Chamber of Commerce, El Nido Resorts, El Nido Travel and Tours Association and other private organizations.

Meanwhile, a juvenile bearcat found caught in a trap during the clean-up operations was set free into the wild. Locally known as Binturong, the local bearcat is listed as a ‘vulnerable species’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to its population decline resulting from habitat destruction, local use and wildlife trade. ### 




DENR-Region 3

DENR identifies 53 cave areas as potential ecotourism sites in Central Luzon 

puning cave web



The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has identified about 53 cave areas in Central Luzon and urges the public to protect and conserve these resources, which serve as home to important animal species and potential ecotourism site, environment officials announced yesterday.

Paquito Moreno, Jr., regional director of DENR-Region 3 said caves are critical part of an ecosystem which is rich in biological, historical and geological resources.

“Central Luzon is rich in caves. This natural ecosystem is one of the wonders of nature and part of our natural heritage. It is usually hidden in the mountains and exhibit awesome rock formations of stalactites and stalagmites,” he explained.

He said caves must be protected and sustainably managed as it contains valuable natural resources which can provide numerous educational, historical, cultural, economic, scientific and aesthetic benefits to our communities.

According to Arthur Salazar, deputy director for Technical Services, caves are home to some important species of frogs, bats, mammals, birds, reptiles, crabs and even microorganism.

“This unique ecosystem also contains specialized mineral formations, including calcite, limestone, and gypsum,” he said.

He said out of the 53 identified caves in the region, 27 of these can be found in Bulacan, ten are in Nueva Ecija, eight in Zambales, six in Aurora and two are in Tarlac.

The DENR has also officially classified eight caves in Aurora and Bulacan into Class 1 and 2, which are now being managed by the local government units (LGU), he added.

These caves are Sinag, Tikbalang and Layang-layang caves, all in San Luis town in Aurora; Puning cave in Dona Remedios Trinidad town, Bayukbok, Pebbles and Madlum caves in San Miguel town, and Pinagrealan cave in Norzagaray town, all in Bulacan.

According to DENR cave classifications, class 1 caves are those with delicate and fragile geological formations, threatened species, archeological and paleontological values, and extremely hazardous. Allowable use may include mapping, photography, educational and scientific study.

Class 2 are those caves with areas or portions which have sections that have hazardous conditions and contain sensitive geological, biological, archeological, cultural, historical, and biological values or high-quality ecosystem. It may be necessary to close sections of these caves seasonally or permanently. It is open only to experienced caves or guided educational tours or visits

Class 3 are caves generally safe to inexperienced visitors with no known threatened species, archeological, geological, natural history, cultural and historical values. These caves may also be utilized for economic purposes such as guano extraction and edible birds nest collection.

“We urge the public especially those cave enthusiasts, mountain climbers and eco-tourist to protect and conserve our cave areas in the region because this is one of our pride and natural heritage,” Moreno said.

Section 7 of Republic Act (RA) No. 9072 or the National Caves and Cave Resources Management Act, prohibits the destroying, disturbing, defacing, marring, altering, removing, or harming the speleogem or speleothem of any cave or altering the free movement of any animal or plant life into or out of any cave.

The law also prohibits the gathering, collecting, possessing, consuming, selling, bartering or exchanging or offering for sale without authority any cave resources.

Anyone found guilty of violating Sec. 7 of RA 9072 shall be punished by up to six years of imprisonment and a maximum fine of P500,000.

DENR defined cave as any naturally occurring void, cavity, recess or system of interconnected passages beneath the surface of the earth or within the cliff or ledge and which is large enough to permit an individual to enter whether or not the entrance, located either in private or public land, is naturally formed or manmade. It also includes cave resources therein, but not any vug, mine tunnel, aqueduct or other man-made excavation. 





DENR kicks off comprehensive cleanup of Zapote river in Cavite 

R4B Zapote River Clean up web


The Department of Environment and Natural Resources – MIMAROPA kicked off the comprehensive cleanup of the Zapote river in Brgy. Molino 3, Bacoor City on Wednesday (May2), at the start of the local celebration of May as Month of the Ocean.

“Today marks not only the start of our celebration of May as the Month of the Ocean but also to kick off the comprehensive clean up of the Zapote River. Pag sinabing comprehensive cleanup, talagang ‘yan ay matindi,” DENR-Region 4A Director Sofio B. Quintana said as he addressed the participants to the cleanup activity.

Quintana said that he was supposed to join President Duterte to Bondoc Peninsula in Mulanay, Quezon to distribute Certificates of Land Ownership Award (CLOA) but he opted to join the cleanup, saying “It is but my official and moral obligation to be here. Kasi ito pong usapin sa Zapote River ay nasimulan noong isang taon, July 2017, noong ako’y nasa National Capital Region kasama ng ating mahal na kalihim, Secretary Roy A. Cimatu,” Quintana explained.

During that time, Quintana said, Sec. Cimatu had instructed him to clean the filthy river. And since the river, according to him, is the boundary between the National Capital Region and the CALABARZO Region, he immediately contacted Bacoor City Environment and Natural Resources Officer (ENRO) Rolando Bucalan, who agreed to undertake a joint comprehensive clean up of Zapote river.

Bucalan, who was also present in the cleanup activity, called on the residents of Brgy. Molino 3 to have a sense of responsibility to maintain the cleanliness of the river once it is cleaned.

“Hindi dahil may pumupulot ng basura ay may karapatan na ang mga tao na magkalat. Sana naman po, pag-alis namin dito, meron po kayong responsibilidad na panatilihing malinis ‘yong aming mga nilinis,” Bucalan said.

He added: “Kasi ang pagtatapon po sa ilog ay seconds lang, pero araw po ‘yan para angatin, para mawala. Ganoon po kahirap ‘yan, kaya sa komunidad po, napakasuwerte ng barangay na ito na mayroong maglilinis ng manwal ditto. Ito po ay isang goodwill at example po. Sana po sa mga taga-rito, i-maintain nyo po ang mga nilinis ng ating mga kasama.”

Meanwhile, DENR-Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) for Cavite Reynaldo Belen emphasized the importance of discipline in maintaining the cleanliness in the area. He also appealed that the clean-up be done not only in the barangay but also in the whole province as the wastes disposed at the upper areas will eventually flow down the low-lying ones. ### 





DENR-Region 12

DENR inks MOA with Sarangani Bay business sector

R12 MOA with buss sector web


The Department of Environment and Natural Resources - Region 12 (DENR-R12) has renewed its partnership agreement with three business establishments within the Sarangani Bay Protected Seascape (SBPS).

DENR-Region 12 Director Nilo B. Tamoria signed the memorandum of agreement for joint efforts in the management, protection and conservation of the protected area with Bayani B. Fredeluces, senior vice president of RD Fishing Industry Incorporated; Engracio Sestina, vice president and general manager of Philbest Canning Corporation; and Dr. Delfin Besquillo, Jr., owner of Coco Beach Resort.

Sarangani Gov. and co-chair of SBPS Protected Area Management Board (PAMB) Steve Chiongbian Solon witnessed the signing of the said MOA.

Under the MOA, the DENR and the business enterprises shall jointly manage, protect and conserve as well as develop and enhance the resources potentials of SBPS for the benefit and enjoyment of the communities as well as the general public.

Specifically, the companies shall implement all programs, projects and activities identified in the Comprehensive Development and Management Plan, which was prepared in accordance with the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) Act.

Tamoria also said the participating establishments will also help in addressing environmental problems facing the Sarangani Bay. “The DENR will strictly monitor the compliance of business establishments and the tourism business providers to environmental laws. We will be issuing Notice of Violations (NOVs) to those who would violate environmental laws,” he said.

SPBS Protected Area Superintendent (PASu) Iskak Dipatuan said that prior to the signing of MOA, a series of assessment and re-assessment were conducted by the DENR- PASu team.

“We had conducted appraisal/re-appraisal of the existing land being occupied by them and the improvement and structures introduced. Based on the re-assessment report, we favorably endorsed to SBPS-PAMB, through a resolution, the renewal of the MOA for special uses within SBPS,” Dipatuan said.

The MOA serves as a binding instrument between the PAMB and the owners and operators of business enterprises for the occupation and use of foreshore/coastal areas of SBPS as defined under Presidential Proclamation No. 756, and pursuant to the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the NIPAS Act.

Sarangani Bay is known for its rich biodiversity, harboring a wide variety of ecosystems ranging from mangroves to seagrasses to the varying depths of its coral reefs. Sarangani Bay was declared a protected seascape by virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 756, dated March 5, 1996. ### 





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