MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources Biodiversity Management Bureau (DENR BMB), in partnership with Forest Foundation Philippines and Tanggol Kalikasan (TK), organized a series of consultative workshops for the crafting of the revised Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of R.A. 7586, or the National Integrated Protected Areas System Act (NIPAS Act), as amended by R.A. 11038, or the Expanded National Integrated Protected Areas System Act of 2018 (ENIPAS Act of 2018).
On June 22, 2018, the ENIPAS Act of 2018 was enacted. It aims to uphold the Filipinos’ constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology. Since this act seeks to strengthen the provisions of the NIPAS Act, the ENIPAS Act of 2018 increased the number of protected areas in the country from 13 to 107, where the additional 94 protected areas rose the covered protected land area from the current 800,000 hectares to 3.6 million hectares.
To further ensure and strengthen the protection and conservation of the areas covered by the ENIPAS Act of 2018, the DENR BMB, together with its partners, lined up a series of consultation workshops with critical stakeholders, including DENR personnel, Protected Area Superintendents, and representatives from other government agencies, local government units, civil society organizations and other sectors.
Atty. Jose Andres Canivel, Executive Director of the Foundation, shared, “The Foundation believes in the importance of stakeholder participation in these processes. That is why we have supported DENR BMB and TK in this endeavor. We believe that by ensuring that every stakeholders’ voice is present in various levels of decision making, and by working together to lay down the means and methods to implement this act, we will be able to craft an IRR that will not only ensure the conservation and protection of these areas but will also be responsive to the needs of the stakeholders, especially those within our focal landscapes.”
The Forest Foundation awarded a grant to TK to facilitate DENR BMB’s consultative workshops for the crafting of the IRR of the ENIPAS Act of 2018.