The Department of Environment and Natural Resources CALABARZON Regional Executive Director Nilo B. Tamoria conducted an ocular inspection in the Impounding area of DENR CENRO Real located in Brgy. Abiawin, Infanta, Quezon last November 5.

A total of 49 chainsaws were confiscated from various apprehension activities since 2011 to date. Based on the Environment and Natural Resources  Information and Statistics of DENR CALABARZON 2020, there are more than a thousand cubic meters of major forest products seized and confiscated from 2016-2020 in the Province of Quezon alone.

Timber poaching and illegal logging activities in the province may be attributed to the lush forest cover of the area. Based on the 2020 Philippine Forestry Statistics of the Forest Management Bureau, almost 400,000 hectares or 69% of the total Forest land of the Region is located in Quezon. Meanwhile, there were 20 identified illegal logging and timber poaching hotspot Barangays within the Real, Infanta, and Nakar Area.

As a response to these challenges, DENR CALABARZON through its Enforcement Division conducted a paralegal training for its Deputized and prospective Environment and Natural Resources Officers (DENROs) in the Region recently. With this, the DENROs were provided with information and strategies to augment knowledge gaps and calibrate their understanding of ENR laws. At the same time, it provided them with technical competencies to enforce ENR laws. DENR continues to iterate its  strategies in enforcement operations. The Environmental Protection and Enforcement Bureau (EPEB) Bill hopes to get the nod of the Congress so that enforcement initiatives are sustained and to ensure that environmental offenders are held accountable.

RED Tamoria recognized the hazards that DENROs may face in the line of duty. “Hindi po lingid sa ating kaalaman ang kinakaharap na hazard ng ating mga kasamang bantay gubat at DENROs kaya naman patuloy ang ibayong pagsulong sa pagpapatupad ng inihain nating bill ukol sa pagtataguyod ng Environmental Protection and Enforcement Bureau. Sa pamamagitan nito ay gagamit tayo ng angkop na sistema at teknolohiya para siguruhin ang kaligtasan ng ating kalikasan pati na rin ng ating enforcers,” he said.

Currently, there are a total of 65 volunteer bantay gubat from the Haribon Foundation assigned in the Real, Infanta, and Nakar area. The DENR CALABARZON is looking forward to providing paralegal training for them and look into possibilities of their deputization as DENROs. ###