City of San Fernando—The government will start rehabilitating the 44,000 hectares of Pantabangan-Carranglan watershed project situated in Nueva Ecija following the completion of 55-meter long Calaocan hanging bridge in Burgos town. Carranglan over the weekend.
Department of Environment and Natural Resources regional office in Central Luzon said the reforestation project is part of the 10-year Forest Management Program of the government including the rehabilitation of the Pantabangan-Carranglan Watershed (PCW).
“FMP is a 10-year reforestation project that aims to rehabilitate the PCW, one of the biggest protected areas in Central Luzon, through collaborative and comprehensive community-based forest management strategies,” said DENR3 director Paquito Moreno.
He said the FMP also integrates conservation and development-oriented activities with participation and capacity-building of local communities to rehabilitate degraded forestlands in three critical river basins, including Upper Magat and Cagayan in Region 2, Upper Pampanga in Region 3, and Jalaur in Iloilo.
On Friday. DENR3 and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) inaugurated the 55-meter long Calaocan hanging bridge linking Burgos village, Carranglan, Nueva Ecija to other areas in Carranglan.
Moreno said the bridge was funded by JICA as an Agroforestry Support Facility subproject in the 10-year Forest Land Management Project (FMP) in the Pantabangan-Carranglan watershed, which will connect farm areas to market towns, reduce transport cost of agricultural products, minimize post-harvest losses and ensure easier access to social services such as health and education.
“This 55-meter Calaocan hanging bridge, which traverses the Deguireg river, will be of great help not just in the conduct of developmental activities within the watershed, but will likewise be fundamental in uplifting the lives of the local communities as this will serve as a channel to increase local trade and productivity,” he said.
The completion of the hanging bridge is one of DENR’s strong commitments to uplift the socio-economic well-being of local communities while conserving and protecting the environment.
Moreno expressed his sincere appreciation to JICA for their generosity and as a formidable ally in bringing significance to good governance towards social and environmental development.
Launched in 2012, FMP has already rehabilitated 14,133 hectares of denuded forest lands in PCW.
Last year, it was able to construct a 3.7-kilometer farm-to-market road in Conversion village of Pantabangan town benefitting some 350 upland farmers and their families.