The DENR CENRO Boracay Island has a new officer in charge.
DENR Regional Executive Director Adeluisa G. Siapno, through DENR Regional Special Order No. 2013-270 dated July 16, 2013, has designated Atty. Elizur G. Militar to momentarily take the place of incumbent CENRO Boracay Island officer-in-charge Mirza Samillano.
Samillano is taking a leave of absence for “health reasons.”
The Order read: “In the interest of the service and to avoid any disruption in the operations of the CENRO Boracay Island…Atty. Elizur G. Militar, Project Evaluation Officer II, DENR Region 6, Iloilo City is hereby designated as Officer-in-Charge of CENRO Boracay Island, Malay Aklan.”
Militar is reporting to office today, July 22.
Bago River Watershed Rehabilitation Project promotes environmental protection and economic benefits
The waters of Bago River originates from the two mountains declared as Protected Areas, the Northern Negros Natural Park (NNNP) and the Mt. Kanlaon Natural Park (MKNP). Rehabilitating such precious natural resource was instrumental in bringing about environmental protection and economic benefits to the stakeholders.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 6 together with eight local government units (LGUs) in Negros Occidental has worked and is still working to rehabilitate the precious Bago River Watershed (BRW).
With a total land area of 83, 020 hectares, the Bago River Watershed (BRW) originates between two protected areas: the Northern Negros Natural Park (NNNP) in northeast and Mount Kanla-on Natural Park (MKNP) in southeast. The Bago River stretches to about 75 kilometers passing through five municipalities and drains down Guimaras Strait. It is a water resource which irrigates more than 15,000 has. of rice field in lowland areas.
Home to various indigenous flora and fauna, the Bago River Watershed is a haven to some species which are considered vulnerable under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). A vulnerable species is defined to be 10% or more likely to become extinct sometime within the next 100 years. Within the expanse of the watershed can also be found six species of large mammals of Negros Island, two of which are considered endangered, the Philippine Spotted Deer and the Visayan Warty Pig. These species are in danger of extinction within the foreseeable future and thereby need to be conserved. The continuous existence of diverse flora and fauna within the watershed is one factor that determines its health.
Ongoing deforestation due to intensive agriculture and the increasing human settlements along the Bago River banks have impacted on the watershed’s capacity to sustain its environment.
Thus, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Region 6 made collaborative efforts with the local government units (LGUs) concerned to rehabilitate the Bago River Watershed.
The Bago River Watershed Rehabilitation Project started in 2009 in cooperation with the eight cities/municipalities of Calatrava, San Carlos City, Don Salvador Benedicto (DSB), Murcia, Talisay City, Bago City, La Carlota City, and Pulupandan and with the province of Negros Occidental. With a total budget of P52,584,833.90, the project duration will be until December 2013.
The LGUs involved embarked on various environmental activities to rehabilitate the watershed. They include agroforestry, which is the combination of agricultural and forestry technologies or simply put, it is “trees on farms” in 605.20 has.; Mangrove rehabilitation and riverbank stabilization in 122 has.; Rainforestation, which is a farming system using the combination of native and agricultural crops in 230 has., and which also replaces destructive forms of farming system; Assisted Natural Regeneration (ANR) of 240 has. ANR method enhances the establishment of secondary forests and is more cost-efficient in helping the forest regenerate itself; Nursery establishments in eight units where seedlings are raised to support the planting activities; Rattan plantation and Installation and Establishment of Hydro-Meteorology (Hydromet) Station in BRW.
A successful implementation of the Integrated Ecosystem Management (IEM) Framework Plan for Bago River Forest Reserve Watershed Management Project under the National Program Support – Environment and Natural Resources Management Project (NPS-ENRMP) was one of the key factors that helped the project attain its objectives.
Through the implementation of the IEM Framework Plan, a close complementary and collaborative efforts among the DENR, LGUs, Academe, Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and other stakeholders was sustained; delivery of basic LGU services reached the upland communities thereby reducing rebellion cases; Peoples Organizations’ (POs) participation in the rehabilitation of Bago River Watershed was strengthened; the socio-economic situation of the PO communities through employment and investment opportunities were uplifted; and lastly, the project has transformed the communities’ lifestyle in terms of food, shelter and clothing as abundant economic gains were received by the beneficiaries from the produce coming from Agroforestry Project Components.
“The Bago River Watershed is a precious natural treasure which we must preserve for the benefit of the future generation of Negrenses. Rehabilitating and preserving it must be continuously done by all stakeholders. We have already seen the positive effects of our combined efforts and I hope that everyone continues what we have started. Afterall, this will be our legacy to our future heirs,” said Dr. Adeluisa G. Siapno, Regional Executive Director of DENR 6.
The implementation of the IEM Framework Plan is under the oversight of the BRW Forest Reserve Management Council (BRWFRMC) which act as a forum for discussion, coordination and management between and among agencies and organizations and the communities involved. The Council oversees the implementation of the rehabilitation project with technical support from DENR.
Not only did the project was able to provide environmental and economic benefits but strengthened LGUs’ capacities in crafting and implementing strategies that help secure the integrity of Bago River Watershed ecosystems through the IEM Framework Plan. /DENR-RPAO 6
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