DENR 6 bares NGP triumphs

As efforts to increase the country’s forest cover and green spaces continue, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region 6 lays down some of its notable achievements on its implementation of the Enhanced National Greening Program (ENGP).

The ENGP took effect through Executive Order No. 193, s. 2015 signed by the late President Benigno S. Aquino III wherein from the years 2016 to 2028, the National Greening Program shall be expanded to rehabilitate the estimated 7.1 million hectares of forests that have remained to be degraded, denuded, or unproductive as well as to unite people in ensuring the success of concerted efforts by all sectors of our society.

“The Enhanced National Greening Program plays an important role in revitalizing our forestlands. Apart from combating climate change, more trees mitigate disaster risks and will also provide the much needed refuge to our native wildlife,” said Regional Executive Director Livino B. Duran.

DENR Region 6 field offices – PENROs Iloilo and Negros Occidental through its respective CENROs in Barotac Nuevo and Kabankalan City – have fully accomplished their targets for seedling production numbering to 738,143 seedlings as well as its plantation establishment, which spans a total of 448 hectares as of November 29, 2023.

Other PENROs and CENROs meanwhile conducted continuous monitoring and upkeep of their existing project sites.

Aside from restoring forestlands around the country, another notable result of the ENGP is its ability to provide sources of livelihood to local communities with the planting of native tree species, bamboo varieties, and fruit-bearing trees. In project sites at Western Visayas, it fosters far reaching effects that continue to benefit the project beneficiaries.

In Brgy. San Antonio, San Enrique, Iloilo, members of San Antonio Upland Farmers Association (SAUFA), DENR’s partner organization in the upkeep of the NGP site, have been reaping the results of their labor through harvesting Cacao fruits and other produce such as Rambutan, Avocado, Coffee, Guyabano, and Caimito, among others.

Aside from these, native trees such as Molave, Philippine Ash, and Banilad are also being cultivated in the site.

Livelihood is just one part of the spectrum. Women are also being empowered through greater visibility and in leading the efforts to conserve, protect, and rehabilitate the environment.

One great example is at Sitio Manalimsim, Pook, Hinoba-an in Negros Occidental wherein Zenaida R. Barroca, Chairperson of the Manalimsim Mangrove Multi-Purpose Association (MMMPA) received the “Abanse Babaye Award” in 2022 for her contributions in maintaining the 20-hectare mangrove plantation in the area.

            “The success of any endeavor in DENR depends upon the agency’s will as well as the cooperation of people in different localities. The ENGP provided another platform for us to engage with them, urging them to support us through combined efforts to protect and preserve our environment for future generations,” Duran said. (DENR-6)