Thursday, February 3, 2011

Pres. Aquino orders logging ban

President Benigno Aquino III finally signed the Executive order No. 23 imposing a logging moratorium that will tighten up preservation of forests in the country. This EO was also formed to protect citizens from devastating floods and landslides. “This is one of my primary interests and that everybody has to attend to it,” Aquino said.

In regards to Aquino’s EO 23, all other executive orders, regulations, and other issuances which are inconsistent to it were amended. Aquino even ordered rehabilitation of the ravaged infrastructure caused by recent floods and noted the need to allocate P1.5 billion fund for it.

Aquino also forbade DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources) from releasing logging agreements or contracts in natural and residual forests. According to the EO, logging agreements like Integrated Forest management Agreements (Ifma), Community-Based Forest Management (CBFMA), Socialized Integrated Forest Management Agreements (Sifma) and other agreements that relates to logging in forests must be ended immediately if the holders were into logging activities in any natural or residual forest.
The EO also regulates DENR to follow the United Nations standard guidelines regarding forest certification system to ensure the legal sources and chain of custody of wood products nationwide.

Aquino’s EO no. 23 will take effect right away after publication in a newspaper of general circulation. And environmentalists are hopeful that this will greatly help the environmental protection in the country.

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