DENR-CALABARZON leads coastal and underwater cleanup of Balayan Bay in observance of Earth Day

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Ten divers and 15 staff members from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources Region 4A CALABARZON led by Protected Areas Wildlife and Coastal Zone Management Service Regional Technical Director Dr. Domingo Bravo and DENR Batangas City Chief Laudemir Salac scoured the coastline and off-shore area of Balayan Bay in San Jose, Anilao, Mabini, Batangas to gather trash in observance of Earth Day on April 22. The group was able to gather a minimal amount of trash since the area was reportedly kept clean by resort owners particularly by Charito Moreno of  Vistamar Resort and the residents of San Jose. This year’s celebration’s theme “Earth Day everyday, everywhere for everyone” was also aptly observed as an opportune time to test the freshly acquired dive equipment which were intended for the DENR’s implementation of an integrated coastal resource management. DENR Region 4A Regional Executive Director Reynulfo Juan, who was instrumental in procuring the dive equipment and the scuba divers’ training, said “The divers, trained and equipped with the proper gear and knowledge of CRM, and with commitment to sustainably manage the natural coastal resource, will spearhead coastal resource assessment and help in other divers’ training in Batangas and other coastal and marine areas within Calabarzon.” He said the DENR CALABARZON divers will conduct a comprehensive ecological and resources assessment of the Verde Island Passage Marine Corridor off Balayan and Batangas Bays and adjacent bays. The Verde Island Passage was highlighted when it was declared as the “center of the center of marine shore fishes biodiversity” in 2007.  Photo shows Dr. Bravo briefing the group on the significance of the cleanup activity and the celebration of Earth Day.