CIMATU URGES CONTINUOUS REHAB OF MOGPOG, BOAC RIVERS DURING MARINDUQUE’S 100TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION; CALLS FOR SHARED EFFORTS TO PROTECT THE PROVINCE’S NATURAL RESOURCES
Boac, Marinduque. Consistent with his 10-point agenda, which includes achieving clean water for all, Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu urged the continuous rehabilitation of Boac and Mogpog Rivers as he led the unveiling of the centennial monument that marks the 100th anniversary of the declaration of Marinduque as an independent province by virtue of Republic Act No. 2880 on February 21, 1920.
In his speech as guest of honor during the province’s anniversary celebration on February 19, Cimatu expressed the urgency to restore these bodies of water which greatly suffered from the toxic materials that spilled during the Marcopper mining disaster on March 24, 1996.
In line with this, the Secretary will issue an administrative order pertaining to the proper dredging and other efforts to clean and restore the rivers.
“Through the years, this province has endured many trials and difficulties, yet it survived--the reason we are celebrating what we call ‘Sentenaryo ng Marinduque,’” he said.
The Environment Chief remarked that while it is normal to look back on what happened in the past, the people of Marinduque must assess its impact in their lives and reflect on what they can still contribute to improve the province.
“The question now should be, “Are we contented with the present state of this province or do we still want to move ahead and achieve a better Marinduque, one that is more resilient?”
The Secretary explained that to foster development, the people of Marinduque must be ready to accept one big challenge to sustain their God-given natural riches and for them to secure the province’s next generations.
“The protection of the environment and all other natural resources is not solely the responsibility of the DENR, but a shared responsibility among various stakeholders,” he stated.
Since Marinduque tops the list of 10 provinces that are most susceptible to landslides based on the study conducted by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau, Cimatu also pointed out that it is imperative that LGUs consider the preventive or mitigating measures in their local disaster-preparedness plan.
He also urged the local government unit to ensure establishment and operation of a sanitary landfill to address garbage collection and disposal issues in the province.
“I believe that with the very competent leaders of this province, all problems and issues on the environment will be resolved,” Cimatu said as he recognized DENR’s partnership with Marinduque’s LGU headed by Representative Lord Allan Jay Q. Velasco, Governor Presbitero J. Velasco, Jr., Vice-Governor Romulo A. Bacorro Jr., and the members of Sanguniang Panlalawigan who were present in the event.
Lastly, the DENR chief ordered the Department’s local officials and employees to conduct regular monitoring and inspection of air and water quality, as well as solid waste management of the six municipalities of Marinduque, namely Boac, Buenavista, Gasan, Mogpog, Sta. Cruz and Torrijos.
Joining the DENR Secretary were other officials namely, MGB Acting Director Atty. Wilfredo Moncano, DENR MIMAROPA Regional Executive Director Henry Adornado, MGB MIMAROPA Regional Director Roland De Jesus and Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Imelda M. Diaz.
“Marinduque is bestowed with God-given natural resources. Its beauty is a big potential for ecotourism and other types of development. I believe that economic growth espoused with environmental and social justice is the real “development” because when there is social justice, there is progress,” Cimatu said
“Marinduquenos, aim for a better, progressive and more resilient province! If you want real change, then work for it, work hard with us!,” the Secretary concluded.###
SECRETARY ROY A. CIMATU UNVEILS THE CENTENNIAL MONUMENT OF MARINDUQUE
Boac Marinduque- On February 19, 2020, Secretary Roy A. Cimatu of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) was the Guest of Honor in the Centennial Celebration of the Province of Marinduque. In his speech during the unveiling of the centennial monument, he urged the continuous restoration of Boac and Mogpog Rivers as these are the bodies of water highly affected by the Marcopper mining disaster incident on March 24, 1996.
Secretary Roy A. Cimatu was warmly welcomed by the people of Marinduque and had meet and greet with officials and employees of the Provincial and Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO) spearheaded by Imelda M. Diaz, OIC-PENR Officer, together with Henry A. Adonardo, Regional Executive Director of DENR MIMAROPA Region, Atty. Wilfredo S. Moncano, Acting Director of Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) and Engr. Roland A. De Jesus, MGB MIMAROPA Regional Director.
Congressman Lord Allan Jay Q. Velasco, Hon. Presbitero J. Velasco, Jr., Governor of Marinduque, and Vice-Governor Romulo A. Bacorro Jr., and members of Sanguniang Panlalawigan and Heads of various National Government Agencies (NGAs) and Local Government Officials were also present in the event and expressed their support to DENR programs, projects and activities towards the sustainable conservation, protection and management of the environment and natural resources of the province.
According to Sec. Cimatu he ordered all officials and employees of the Department to regularly conduct monitoring and inspection of air quality, water quality and proper waste disposal of six (6) Municipalities of Marinduque.
Likewise, he encouraged the establishment and operation of a sanitary landfill of Local Government Units (LGUs) even by cluster of municipalities to mitigate the aggravating garbage collection and disposal problem in the Province. ###
Boac River cleanup activities unite 1,600+ Marinduqueños
BOAC, MARINDUQUE. More than 1,600 local volunteers gathered in various areas in Marinduque in support of the World Water Day 2019 celebrations.
Dubbed “Water for All: Now and Foriver”, simultaneous cleanups of Boac River and its riverbanks, including tree-planting activities, united local volunteers on Friday, March 22.
Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer (PENRO) Marinduque Imelda Diaz led the program together with DENR MIMAROPA Assistant Regional Director for Technical Services Vicente Tuddao, Jr. They were joined by Marinduque Governor Romulo Bacorro Jr., former Supreme Court Associate Justice Presbitero Velasco Jr., Boac Mayor Roberto Madla, Marinduque State College President Merian Mani, and key officials from many local agencies and civil service organizations.
The simultaneous cleanup of the longest and largest river in the province took place in 26 barangays: Hinapulan, Boi, Canat, Binunga, Ogbac, Mainit, Bantay, Balagasan, Puyog, Balimbing, Bamban, Boton, Sawi, Daig, Tumapon, Tagwak, Tampus, Daypay, Poblacion, Murallon, Tabi, Santol, Lupac, Tabigue, Bangbangalon, and Laylay.
Boac River disaster remembered
“Today we are cleaning what we can see in the river and in nearby communities,” said ARD Tuddao. “The bigger problems are the ones we don’t see.”
It was 23 years ago today when Boac River took center stage in one of the biggest mining disasters in the country.
On March 24, 1996, the drainage tunnels of Marcopper Mining Corporation’s open pit ruptured and spilled millions of tons of mine waste that smothered the river, inundating villages and killing marine life.
ARD Tuddao announced the agency’s intentions to launch a river summit in Marinduque this year.
‘Plant more trees’
DENR Marinduque took the river cleanup activity up a notch by adding simultaneous tree planting activities in various areas surrounding Boac River.
Restoring riverbank trees and shrubs is an important step toward improved water cleanliness, more stable riverbanks, and better fish and wildlife habitat for rivers.
Tree planting activities also took place in several barangays: 50 tinikan bamboos were planted in Brgy Tabigue, more than 100 narra trees were planted in Brgys Binunga, Ogbac, Hinapulan, Canat, and Boi, while 30 mangrove trees were planted in Brgy Laylay.
In addition to being oxygen-producers, trees provide a range of other important benefits to rivers, people and animals. Trees improve water quality, as well as absorb and filter pollution from our soil and air.
PH Law: ‘Every Filipino is required to plant one tree each year’
Section 8 of Republic Act No. 10176, otherwise known as the Arbor Day Act of 2012 states, “All able-bodied citizens of the Philippines, who are at least twelve (12) years of age, shall be required to plant one (1) tree every year.”
“Agriculture thrives only if the environment thrives,” said AGREA Communications Director Rafael Seño.
For 2 years now, AGREA and its volunteer arm AGREA 1000 Strong with support from DENR, has already planted more than 500 indigenous trees in Marinduque. Arbor Day 2019 Marinduque happens on June 22.
The launching of DENR’s ‘River for Life’ program in Marinduque coincides with World Water Day 2019, a global event that tackles the water crisis by addressing the reasons why so many people are being left behind. The AGREA Team
Feature Image by Erwin Monroyo Penafiel