TAGBILARAN CITY – The province of Bohol has benefited from Integrated Natural Resources and Environmental Management Project (INREMP), said to be an ambitious project to restore more than a million hectares of watershed areas in the country, Provincial Environment Natural Resource Officer (Penro) Nestor Canda said in an interview with Bohol News Today recently.
Watershed areas to benefit from INREMP are Chico in the Cordillera Region, Wahig-Inabanga in Central Visayas, Bukidnon in Northern Mindanao and Lake Danao Watershed in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and Wahig-Inabanga watershed has a total of 62,853 has., DENR said. Under the program, there are components that have corresponding appropriations for their implementation. These include River and Watershed management and Planning to the tune of PhP9,904,000 for the preparation and adoption of development plan, conduct of water characterization and creation of watershed management.
Another component has a budget of PhP98,538,000 for the conduct of community-based protection” — 7,548 hectares; reforestation — 800 has.; assisted nature regeneration (ANR), pilot tree plantation — 1,800 hectares; agroforest — 1,050 hectares; and commercial tree plantation — 50 hectares.
One of the main purposes of the program is to prevent soil erosion of Wahig-Inabanga watershed river basin and provide incentives to the local community situated in the area and restore past biodiversity losses.
Through these “interventions” it is expected that the community folk’s plight would be improved and their livelihood incomes increased at the same time the watershed area rehabilitated.
The project also intends to rehabilitate some communal irrigation and provide potable water supply for the community affected. It also provides micro, small, medium agribusiness, post harvest management and micro- credit as well as conservation farm practices, Canda said.
He said that the project tries to look at how to complement development and conservation issues, such as climate change and biodiversity, in these critical watershed areas, aside from promoting the National Greening Program of P-Noy.