Where We Work
• Kubo • Nipa Hut
The provinces of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental lie in Northern Mindanao (commonly referred to as Region X), an administrative region with at least 60 percent of its total land area classed as forest lands. Gifted with abundant natural resources and unique terrain, the region is considered an eco-tourism haven.
Typically, Northern Mindanao is outside the typhoon belt in the Philippines. However, climate change has led to flooding in multiple areas in the wake of Typhoon Sendong in 2011 and the January 2017 flash floods.
Given that 60 percent of the region are forest lands, flood susceptibility of low-lying areas is relatively high. This, coupled with the undutiful usage of forest lands for agricultural and economic purposes undermine the role of forests in mitigating the effects of climate change in the region.
Industrial and Agricultural Development
The deforestation of Bukidnon, where only 25% of the forest is left, may be attributed to the increase in agricultural expansion on the foot of Mt. Kitanglad. An estimate of 80,000 hectares of plantation is slowly replacing and proliferating the Mt. Kitanglad watershed. Notwithstanding the production expansion of the corporations in the area, the majority of the population does not reap its economic benefits as reflected in the poverty incidence in Bukidnon.
As part of rehabilitating the forest in Northern Mindanao, much needs to be done to manage the expansion of plantations of the multinational companies in the area. Payment of ecosystem services (PES) is viewed as one of the strategies to protect the forests. To promote sustainable livelihood practices and environmental rehabilitation of the forests, the forest-dependent communities will be given a local incentive for their efforts to mitigate the impending risks of flash floods in the area.
The protection of forests in the landscape should be prioritized to curb the effects of disasters and climate change. Because of this, we have allocated Php 86M to protect the forests of Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental.