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Eastern Visayas or Region VIII is composed of three main islands, Biliran, Leyte and Samar, connected by the famous San Juanico Bridge.  It consists of six provinces (Biliran, Samar, Eastern Samar, Northern Samar,  Leyte, and Southern Leyte) and seven cities (Ormoc City, Baybay City, Maasin City, Calbayog City, Catbalogan City, Borongan City, and the regional center - Tacloban City). 

 

Region VIII lies on the east central part of the Philippine archipelago, directly facing the Pacific Ocean. 


POPULATION

Per 2010 census, the Eastern Visayas Region has a total population of 3,912,936.  Its population density in 2010 was 176 persons per square kilometer. 


LAND USE AND FORESTRY

land class smallThe region has a total land area of 2,143,169 hectares, of which 1,118,214 hectares are established as forestland and 1,024,955 hectares are alienable & disposable lands.  Per 2011 Philippine Forestry Statistics, the region has a total forest cover of 519,848 hectares.

As of 2011, a total of 132 Community-Based Forest Management (CBFM) Agreements were signed by the DENR in the region involving 116,739 hectares of forestland, benefitting 14,405 households and 132 people’s organizations.  The CBFM is a government strategy which “gives the management of forests back to the people.”  It offers long-term security of tenure to partner-communities and promotes an integrated approach to sustainable forest resource management.

The region also participated in the National Greening Program, a flagship program of President Benigno S. Aquino III which aims to reforest the entire Philippines within 2011-2016.  In 2011 alone, Region VIII was able to rehabilitate 10,869 hectares of open and denuded lands by conducting massive tree planting activities involving its citizens, thereby expecting to increase the region’s forest cover.

Eastern Visayas is an agricultural region with rice, corn, coconut, sugarcane, and banana as major crops.



CLIMATE

There are two types of climate prevailing in the region under the Corona system of classification: Type II and Type IV.  Type II climate is characterized by having no dry season but a pronounced maximum rainfall from November to January.  Samar Island and the eastern part of Leyte Island fall under this type of climate.  Type IV, on the other hand, has a year round distribution of rainfall and a short period of dry season that is observed from February to May.  This type of climate is well exhibited in the western half of Leyte island and some portions of Northern Samar.


NATURAL RESOURCES


Region VIII is one of the fish exporting regions of the country.  Its sea and inland waters are rich sources of salt and fresh water fish and other marine products. 

 

The region has abundant geothermal energy and water resources.  There are also substantial forest reserves in the interiors of the islands.

 

Mineral resources that abound in the region are chromite, uranium (in Samar), gold, silver, manganese, magnesium, bronze, nickel, clay, coal, limestone, pyrite, and sand and gravel.

 

PROTECTED AREAS

The following sites in Region VIII were declared by law as protected areas and components of the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS): the Calbayog-Pan-As Hayiban Protected Landscape (in Samar), the Guiuan Protected Landscape/Seascape (in Eastern Samar), the Calbiga Caves Protected Landscape (in Samar), the Cuatro Islas Protected  Landscape/Seascape (in Leyte), the Biri Larosa Protected Landscape/Seascape (in Northern Samar), the Jicontol Natural Park (in Eastern Samar), the Mahagnao Volcano Natural Park (in Leyte), the Lake Danao Natural Park (in Leyte), the Samar Island Natural Park (in the Provinces of Samar, Eastern & Northern Samar), and the Taft Forest Philippine Eagle Wildlife Sanctuary (in Eastern Samar).

DENR JURISDICTION

The Regional Office of DENR-REGION VIII  has six (6) Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Offices (PENROs) located in Leyte, Biliran, Southern Leyte, Samar, Eastern Samar, and Northern Samar.  Its Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices (CENROs) are in Palo, Albuera, Baybay, Maasin, San Juan, Catbalogan, Sta. Rita, Borongan, Dolores, Catarman, and Pambujan.


                                                                                       POLITICAL SUBDIVISION


Major Islands
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Samar, Leyte & Biliran  map r8
Provinces
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Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Western Samar, Leyte, Southern Leyte and Biliran
Cities
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Tacloban, Ormoc, Maasin, Calbayog, Baybay, Catbalogan & Borongan
No. of Towns
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139
No. of Barangays
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4,390
Population as of Aug. '07
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3,912,936
Annual Pop. Growth Rate
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1.12
Population Density
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183 person/sq. km.
No. of Congressional Districts
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12

Photo Releases

DENR Secretary Gina Lopez leads employees of DENR region 8 in an oath to take care of the environment and be better stewards of the earth. Employees also committed to work for integrity, public service, and common good. The oath of commitment was made by the employees during the visit of Secretary Lopez to DENR regional office on January 16, 2016.

DENR 8 Regional Director Leonardo Sibbaluca presents the region’s central nursery and the 12-hectare Leyte Gulf Mangrove Rehabilitation Project site at Brgy. Anibong, Tacloban City to Green Climate Fund (GCF) Director Javier Manazares (seated, 3rd from left) and Demetrio Innocenti (seated, 4th from left). The project implemented in 2014 in the hardest hit provinces of Leyte, Samar, and Eastern Samar by Typhoon Yolanda envisions to restore the lush mangroves in said areas, emphasizing on the crucial role these mangroves play in protecting the coastline, preventing coastal erosion, serving as buffer for tidal currents and storm driven waves, and mitigating the unavoidable impacts of climate change. GCF visited the area for an ocular inspection in response to the request of Secretary Lopez for financial assistance in support to the department’s programs and projects on climate change mitigation and adaptation. Also in photo are (seated L-R) ERDB Director Henry Adornado, ASec Junie Hernandez, Assistant Secretary Evelyn Cruzada of the Performance and Projects Management Office, office of the Cabinet Secretary.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources in region 8 recognizes the important role played by indigenous communities in the protection and preservation of the region’s protected areas. In photo is the Mamanwa Indigenous Community in Burauen, Leyte joining this year’s Mahagnao Volcano Natural Park Outdoor Festival held on February 3, coinciding with the declaration of MVNP as a protected area under the National Integrated Protected Area System (NIPAS) Act. The event intends to showcase the natural park as a home to various species of flora and fauna including the Philippine Eagle, and promote the preservation of the rich biodiversity in the area.