Coastal Clean-up and Mangrove Planting Activity in Celebration of Month of the Planet Earth of PENRO-Marinduque
Earth month is widely recognized as the largest secular observance celebrated in more than 190 countries around the world with a definitely powerful message. It is an opportunity to raise awareness and advocate for change around the issues most impacting our planet. This year’s theme “Invest in Our Planet” is designed to create a ‘partnership for the planet’ that accounts for all people, and holds businesses and governments accountable. “Everyone accounted for, everyone accountable”.
On April 28, 2023, the Provincial Government of Marinduque under the Administration of Honorable Governor Presbitero J. Velasco, Jr. in partnership with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) – Provincial Environment and Natural Resources – Marinduque and in cooperation with the Barangay Local Government Units (BLGUs) initiated the Coastal Clean-Up and Mangrove Planting in Barangays Maligaya, Buliasnin, and Balogo, in the Municipality of Boac, Province of Marinduque.
A short program was conducted where OIC-PENR Officer Imelda M. Diaz emphasized the importance of everyone’s participation in protecting our planet and helping our Mother Earth to thrive. Furthermore, she highlighted that environmental efforts such as coastal clean-up and tree planting activities are part of the continuous effort to protect and achieve a successful outcome not just for ourselves but for the future generations. Lastly, she encouraged every participant to start taking action and advocate best practices and support "No to Single Use Plastic" campaign to help save our planet.
The Coastal Clean-Up and Mangrove Planting were successfully undertaken with approximately one thousand (1,000) participants and with six hundred fifty (650) propagules planted within the area of the aforementioned three (3) Barangays.
Simultaneously, the employees from the DENR-PENRO Marinduque conducted its monthly 5S activity in the Office. 5S is designed to decrease waste while optimizing productivity through maintaining an orderly workplace and using visual cues to attain more consistent operational results. 5S refers to five (5) steps – Sort, Set in order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain (also known as the 5 pillars of a visual workplace) in order to create and maintain intuitive workplace. To maintain and review standards, the said activity is being conducted at PENRO-Marinduque every last Friday of the month beginning January 2023.
PENRO Marinduque Advocates for Women Empowerment in Environmental Conservation and Protection
On March 31, 2023, OIC-PENR Officer Imelda M. Diaz hosted the regular TV Program entitled “Talakayang Pangkalikasan ng DENR Marinduque” via live telecast at 3:00 PM in Marinduque News Network (MNN), a Local Radio-TV Network in Marinduque Lucky Seven Channel 3. This month's episode focused on the celebration of 2023 National Women’s Month. This 2023, the PCW launches a new recurring theme for the celebration: “WE for gender equality and inclusive society”.
PENRO Diaz noted the various activities organized by DENR-PENRO Marinduque, in support of the Philippine Commission on Women’s (PCW’s) campaign to signify support for gender equality and women’s empowerment, and to cap off this month-long celebration, this Office invited Hon. Adeline M. Angeles, Vice Governor of Marinduque and 2022 Gender and Development (GAD) Champion, as the Special Guest and Resource Person. Vice Governor Angeles emphasized her advocacy in the ongoing endeavor of the Provincial Government of Marinduque to institutionalize numerous programs and projects in support of women’s right and protection. She emphasized the “Saklolo at Gabay sa Ina at Pamilya (SAGIP) Ordinance,” which provides for the Provincial Government's institutionalized intervention in the recovery of abused women and children.
In terms of environmental preservation, she emphasized that as a legislator, she had submitted various Resolutions, such as the Marinduque Environmental Code, which she hoped would be enacted within this quarter or throughout her term. This is an initiative that will safeguard the environment while promoting a variety of activities and projects that may be environmentally hazardous. Furthermore, she emphasized her contributions to several women's organizations, such as the Boac Women's Club. She went on to list the practical contributions of Marinduque's oldest NGO, the Marinduque Council for Environmental Concerns (MACEC), to the protection and conservation of the environment in the province of Marinduque.
PENRO Diaz, on the other hand, cited many celebrations and highlighted activities carried out by DENR-PENRO Marinduque during the month of March, including the Inauguration of the Pawikan Hatchery Center at Brgy. Masiga, Gasan, Marinduque, in conjunction with the celebration of World Wildlife Day on March 3, 2023, with this year's theme "Partnerships for Wildlife Conservation," which provides an opportunity to focus on people at all levels who are working to make a difference in the conservation of species of wild fauna and flora. In addition to World Wildlife Day, she cited that on March 2, 2023, PENRO Marinduque released sixty (60) turtle hatchlings at Brgy. Lupac, Boac, Marinduque. Furthermore, PENRO Diaz also highlighted the simultaneous tree planting activity in the riverbanks of Brgy. Magapua, Mogpog, Brgy. Pinggan, Gasan, Brgy. Kay Duke, Torrijos and Brgy. Buyabod, Sta. Cruz, Marinduque in celebration of World Water Day on March 21, 2023. This activity was participated by the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Municipal Police Station (MPS), Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP), BLGU Magapua, BLGU Pinggan, BLGU Kay Duke and BLGU Buyabod. She stressed the importance of collective efforts of different sectors in protecting and conserving the environment and natural resources. ###
DENR moves to rehab rivers ruined by Marcopper mining disaster
ENVIRONMENT Secretary Roy A. Cimatu has approved an initial P5-million funding for the construction of a 90-meter wide gabion dam across the Mogpog River in Marinduque province as part of the government’s rehabilitation efforts in water bodies devastated by the Marcopper mines.
The dam will be built downstream of the Maguila-guila Creek to prevent further siltation in its basin.
In a statement, Regional Director Roland de Jesus of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Mines and Geosciences Bureau (DENR-MGB) in the Mimaropa region said the amount will cover the first phase of the project—conduct of a feasibility study, technical data gathering, design and planning for the dam’s construction.
“The result of the first phase will yield crucial information on the geological, geotechnical and hydraulic analysis of the Maguila-guila Creek, which will determine the design of the structure,” de Jesus said.
“The second phase or the implementation of construction stage may vary depending on the result of the first phase of the project,” he added.
Cimatu earlier vowed to restore two rivers, including Mogpog , that were devastated by the worst mining disasters in Philippine history—the Marcopper mining disasters in 1993 and 1996. Marcopper mine is one of the so-called legacy mines—those abandoned by mining companies after tragic mining disasters or upon reaching the end of the life of the mine before the Philippine Mining Act of 1995.
While guesting at the recent 100th anniversary of Marinduque province upon the invitation of local officials led by Gov. Presbitero Velasco Jr. and his son, Rep. Lord Allan Velasco, Cimatu bared that a plan to restore all the rivers in the Philippines, including the Boac and Mogpog rivers using nongovernment resources will soon be implemented by the agency.
He said it is high time that the government lead the massive cleanup and rehabilitation of the Boac and Mogpog rivers as people continue to suffer from the effects of the catastrophic tailings spills from the site of Marcopper Mining Corp. in 1993 and 1996.
“The environmental damages and unresolved issues brought about by the Marcopper mining operation in Marinduque for several decades now must be put to an end,” Cimatu said.
In March 1996, a fracture in the drainage tunnel of Marcopper’s Taipan pit spilled more than 1.6 million cubic meters of toxic mine tailings, flooding villages and poisoning the Boac River.
Three years before that, the firm’s Maguila-guila siltation dam also burst, flooding the town of Mogpog, where two children drowned in the mine waste. It practically killed the Mogpog River with its toxic mine tailings.
Marcopper, which started its copper mining operations in the province in 1969, had been dumping mine waste into the Calancan Bay, destroying its corals and seagrasses.
Cimatu said he will immediately issue a department administrative order (DAO) once the Marinduque provincial government submits a formal request to place the Boac and Mogpog rivers under rehabilitation.
The planned river rehabilitation, he said, would include the dredging of the two rivers by a private contractor at no cost to the government.
Cimatu said the private contractor must shoulder all the expenses of the dredging operation in exchange for whatever minerals it may recover, provided the contractor pays the corresponding 4-percent excise tax.
So far, Cimatu has issued four DAOs in relation to the restoration of silted rivers through dredging, based on the separate requests of the provincial governments of Zambales, Oriental Mindoro and Negros Occidental.
The DAOs were pursuant to Joint Memorandum Circular No. 1, Series of 2019, issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Public Works and Highways, Department of the Interior and Local Government, and Department of Transportation.
The joint circular seeks to protect and restore to their natural state and water flow the heavily silted river channels in the country.
Image grabbed from: Philippine Star