CALAMBA CITY, Laguna, Feb. 27 - Fifty-nine areas have been identified as highly susceptible to landlsides, and 57 more as highly susceptible to flooding in Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon provinces), according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region 4-A.
Executive Director Reynulfo A. Juan, DENR-Calabarzon chief, told newsmen that in Cavite, the areas found to be prone to landslides based on geohazard assessment made by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) include Tagaytay City and the municipalities of Maragondon, Ternate, Silang, Alfonso, and Corregidor.
Juan said in Laguna province, the areas include Calamba City, and the towns of Los Banos, Alaminos, Rizal, Nagcarlan, Majayjay, Famy, Mabitac, Sta. Maria, Siniloan, Kalayaan, Cavinti and Paete.
He said that in Batangas, the critical areas are Laurel, Mataas na Kahoy, Cuenca, Lipa City, Tuy, Calaca, Mabini, San Juan, and Rosario; and in Rizal province — Antipolo City, Taytay, Rodriguez, San Mateo, Angono, Binangonan, Cardona, Morong, Baras, Majayjay, Tanay, Pililia and Jalajala.
In Quezon province, Juan said critical areas are General Nakar, Infanta, Real, Mauban, Panukalan, Burdeos, Pagbilao, Atimonan, Lopez, Buenavista, Mulanay, San Andres, San Fransisco, Tagkauayan, Sampaloc, Dolores, Tayabas, Lucban and General Luna.
On hand, areas found to be highly susceptible to flooding in Cavite include the municipalities of Kawit and Noveleta and Cavite City; Mabitac, Santa Maria, Famy, Siniloan, Pangil, Pakil, Paete, Kalayaan, Lumban, Cavinti, and Santa Cruz in Laguna province; Nasugbu, Lian, Calatagan, Tuy, Balayan, Calaca, Lemery, Taal, San Luis, Bauan, San Pascual, Batangas City, Lobo, Laurel, Talisay and Tanauan in the province of Batangas, he said.
Juan said that in Rizal are San Mateo, Cainta, Taytay, Angono, Binangonan, Cardona, Morong, Baras, Tanay, and Antipolo; and in Quezon province are Infanta, Real, Mauban, Pagbilao, Padre Burgos, Pitogo, Macalelon, Catanauan, Mulanay, Buenavista, Lopez, Guinayangan, Tagkawayan, Calauag, Polilio, Burdeos and Lucena City.
DENR Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje had earlier called on local officials to revisit the geohazard maps provided by the MGB in order for them to plan ahead of time measures to mitigate the impact of calamities, he said.
Juan said Secretary Paje had also urged local officials in the five provinces of Calabarzon to involve their constituents in their planning sessions to get their support and cooperation.
As this developed, DENR-Calabarzon inked a memorandum of agreement with Quezon Gov. David Suarez for the rehabilitation of denuded and degraded areas in the province under the National Greening Program spearheaded by the environment department.
Juan said that under the agreement, the DENR has committed to provide some P30 million in funding assistance, including technical support to the provincial government of Quezon.
Suarez, for his part, vowed to take charge of the maintenance of the newly planted seedlings, ensuring no less than 95 percent survival rate, while protecting and enhancing existing vegetation and to also undertake activities to promote biodiversity conservation, Juan said. (PNA) DCT/FFC/CTB