DENR creates Provincial Task Force Naboc River

denr creates provincial task force naboc riverSecretary Roy A. Cimatu of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources recently created the Provincial Task Force Naboc River (PTFNR) through Special Order 2018-593 to address the environmental problems brought about by mining and illegal forest-related activities within Diwalwal Mineral Reservation Area (DMRA).

PTFNR, which is the counterpart of the National Task Force Diwalwal, is being chaired by the DENR-Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer (PENRO) of Compostela Valley Province and is co-chaired by the Governor of Comval Province, Commanding Officer of the 25th IB and the Provincial Director of the Philippine National Police. Members are composed of representatives from the different government agencies, LGUs, miners groups, academe, environmental CSO and irrigators association.

Task Force Naboc River is responsible for the immediate transfer of processing plants from Mt. Diwata to Sitio Mabatas in Brgy. Ulip. President Rodrigo Duterte has pronounced to address the environmental problems in Diwalwal and the rehabilitation of Naboc River in one of his State of the Nation Address (SONA).

The said relocation will be closely coordinated with the Provincial, Municipal and Barangay local government units as well as with the Mines and GeoSciences Bureau (MGB-XI), Environmental Management Bureau (EMB-XI) and other concerned agencies.

The rehabilitation of Naboc River is one of the priority programs of DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu.

At present, the Provincial Government of Compostela Valley Province headed by Governor Jayvee Tyron Uy is close to completing its target in terms of road networks and land preparation in the Mabatas area which includes clearing of relocation sites, road widening, road repairs and culvert installation.

On the other hand, the DENR has allocated funds for the installation of power supply in Sitio Mabatas amounting to 11.3 million pesos. DENR-XI Regional Director Ruth M. Tawantawan said that it is important to address the basic needs of settlers first before they will be transferred to the Mabatas area. Water reservoirs were constructed by the Philippine Mining Development Corporation (PMDC) for distribution to the ballmillers and CIP operators at the site.

A cease and desist order (CDO) was issued by the PMDC ordering all ballmills and CIPs to stop its operation in Mt. Diwata only until May 2018.

DENR also donated a total of 30,655.2 board feet of apprehended logs which shall be used in Sitio Mabatas.

The Task Force will provide mechanisms for the immediate and adequate solution of all issues and concerns affecting the cleaning of Naboc River. It will also recommend policies and programs to ensure the smooth coordination of government efforts for the sustainable management of Naboc River.

Another function of PTFNR is to recommend to appropriate agencies the filling of administrative, civil and or criminal charges against violators of environmental laws within the DMRA specifically Republic Act 6969 or the "Toxic Substances and Hazardous and Nuclear Wastes Control Act of 1990", Republic Act 7942 or the "Philippine Mining Act", Republic Act No. 7076 or the "People's Small-scale Mining Act of 1991" and Presidential Decree 705 or the "Revised Forestry Code of the Philippines”.

Moreover, the Task Force will also apprehend, confiscate, seize and conduct administrative investigation on all illegally-sourced, transported or traded minerals, toxic and hazardous chemicals or forest products including equipment, conveyances and tools and implements used within the DMRA jurisdiction.


Hands-On-ARMS outreach activity held

To raise awareness and highlight the importance of coastal and marine resources to the local communities, especially to the youth, Department of Environment and Natural Resources -XI through its Coastal Resources and Foreshore Management Section (CRFMS) and Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) of Compostela Valley recently conducted the Hands-On-ARMS outreach activity at Mabini Protected Landscape and Seascape (MPLS), Compostela Valley.

This interactive activity was participated by selected Grade 6 students from Don William Gemperle Elementary School in Mabini. The participants were given an opportunity to learn and observe the marine cryptobiota using a simple hand lens or magnifying glass and forceps. They also sorted and classified these small animals into their respective groups.

Despite their small size, marine cryptobiota provides various ecological good and services and serves as primary building blocks of the coral reef. Marine cryptobiota includes shrimps, crabs, hermit crabs, brittle stars, sponges, and tunicates, among others.

As part of DENR's Coastal and Marine Ecosystems Management Program (CMEMP), the Department monitors cryptobiota with the use of Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structures (ARMS), a long-term collecting device that mimics the coral reef and attract these animals. The data will be collected to study on their biodiversity and the effects of climate change on reefs.



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