"It is incumbent upon us in government to provide alternatives for our citizens who are affected by our policies. We want to protect the environment, and want to show that we can save lives and provide livelihood at the same time," said Lopez.

According to Lopez, the DENR together with ten other government line agencies are prepared to invest close to four billion pesos to provide employment opportunities for 25 to 30 thousand households.

The other agencies include the Department of Labor and Employment, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Science and Technology, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, the Department of the Interior and Local Government, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Philippine Coconut Authority, the Department of Public Works and Highways, and the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

"We have a very good, very doable plan that will provide employment in the short and long term, jobs that do not involve mining activities that will damage our much-needed watersheds," explained the DENR chief.

Short-term employment opportunities include reforestation, desilting of agricultural land, napier and bamboo farming, livestock raising, and biochar manufacturing.

Biochar is a powerful soil enhancer that holds carbon and makes soils more fertile. It can boost food security, discourage deforestation and preserve cropland diversity. Biochar systems can reverse soil degradation and create sustainable food and fuel production in areas with severely depleted soils, scarce organic resources, and inadequate water and chemical fertilizer supplies.

Medium  and long-term jobs, on the other hand, will be generated by the manufacture of charcoal briquettes, ecotourism activities, infrastructure, and agro-post harvest processing.

Lopez stressed that "providing economic opportunities and protecting the environment are not mutually exclusive."

"It is not one or the other; we can and should do both at the same time, because we cannot sacrifice the welfare of future generations to meet short-term economic objectives."

The environment secretary added that even experts from the Mineral Policy Center based in Washington, D.C. have referred to water as "mining's most common casualty."

"Any competent scientist will tell you that mining affects fresh water through the heavy use of water in processing ore, and through water pollution from discharged mine effluent and seepage from tailings and waste rock impoundments," explained Lopez.

Lopez said she hoped legislators and fellow cabinet secretaries "look at the issue of protecting our watersheds in the long term because we could face a very, very serious problem with water many years down the road."

A study conducted by the think tank World Resources Institute (WRI) said in late 2015 that the country is in danger of experiencing water scarcity in 23 years. The study predicts the Philippines will experience a "high" degree of water shortage in the year 2040.

The Philippines is ranked 57th out of 167 countries that will likely be a water stressed country in 2040. The study defines water stress as “the ratio between total water withdrawals and available renewable surface water at a sub-catchment level.” ###

DENR press releases and other news/feature articles are posted at the DENR website: www.denr.gov.ph. For queries/comments, write: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


News

  • DENR 8 joins PH Haiyan’s Regional Climate Change Conference
    Thursday, December 14, 2017

    The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in region 8 supported the recently conducted 2nd Regional Climate Change Conference spearheaded by PH Haiyan Advocacy Cooperative in cooperation with the Climate Change Commission. The event aimed at raising the awareness of the youth and urging them to become more actively involved in efforts to address the causes and impacts of climate change was attended by around eight hundred fifty (850) students from across Eastern Visayas.

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Photo Releases

Director Arleigh J. Adorable assumed office as new Regional Director of DENR region 8. His assumption to duty was witnessed by Assistant Secretary for Field Operations - Visayas Marcial Amaro, Jr., Assistant Regional Director for Technical Services Carlito Tuballa, ARD for Management Service Arturo Salazar, MGB RD Raul Laput, EMB officer-in-charge Maribel Munsayac, and DENR 8 PENROs and CENROs. In his message, RD Adorable enjoined the DENR 8 workforce to work hand-in-hand as one family, saying "together, we shall achieve more".

RD Arleigh J. Adorable delivers speech during the Environmental Summit 2017 hosted by Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) 8 with the theme: "Ako, Ikaw, Tayo ang Kalikasan"

Beneficiaries jubilantly display their Land Titles with Cong. Edgar Mary S. Sarmiento, RD Arleigh Adorable, ARD Carlito Tuballa and other government officials.

RD Arleigh J. Adorable delivers his message during the launching of Mount Nacolod Local Conservation Area (LCA) and MOA signing between the DENR, LGU and People's Organization held in Silago, Southern Leyte last November 09, 2017. Mt. Nacolod is one of the nine piloted LCAs in the country. It is home to 229 flora species, mammals, and diverse set of birds, including the Philippine Cockatoo (Cacatua haematurupygia), the Visayas wattled-broadbill (Sarcophanops samarensis) and hornbill.

RD Arleigh J. Adorable (middle) visits the mangrove nursery of Barangay Burayan in San Jose, Tacloban City during a mangrove planting activity held in the area which was participated by DENR employees and the local community in celebration of the Environmental Awareness Month, Climate Change Consciousness Week, and the Clean Air Month (also in photo, Brgy. Chairman Jan Michael De Veyra (left) and ARD for Technical Service Carlito M. Tuballa (right)).

RD Arleigh J. Adorable delivers his message during the National Land Administration and Management System (LAMS) 3rd Quarter Assessment which was hosted by DENR Region 8. LAMS is an information system designed to provide effective management of land records and efficient delivery of land transactions and information services to the public.

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