DENR Bicol signs accord for a bamboo gene bank, and 15-ha bamboo plantation

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The Department of Environment and Natural Resources Regional Office seals an accord with Third District of Albay Representative Fernando V. Gonzalez, Sulpicio Bernardo III of Filmenera Resources Corporation, and Ligao City Mayor Patricia G. Alsua that will establish a bamboo gene bank at Kawakawa Hill, and 15-ha bamboo plantation in eight barangays in Ligao City.

At the signing ceremony of a Memorandum of Understanding DENR Regional Executive Director (RED) Gilbert C. Gonzales bares plans to establish 15 hectare kawayang tinik (Bambusa blumeana) in Bgys. Oma-oma, Baligang, Busac, Abella, Nabonton, Amtic, Maonon and Tula-tula.

Filmenera Resources Corporation (FRC), an industry operating in Masbate, will provide planting materials worth 100,000.00 pesos. The FRC representative expressed the company’s agreement with the RED’s plan to pursue an area development devoted to bamboo. They were convinced to support the project citing among others that Filmenera, a large scale mining operator in Bicol provides for community development program and environmental programs as responsible miners and as part of its corporate social responsibility. They consider the project part of reaching out to other areas- those outside their mining operation site. Their post mining land use involves exploring the establishment of plantation over mined out areas. Mr. Bernardo explains that Mining areas have final mining rehabilitation and decommissioning plan. In formulating it, the participation of local government is important wherein they discuss with DENR and LGU the interventions after mining operation is concluded. “After mine life there ought to be post mining land use, we are required to do post mining rehabilitation, “Mr. Bernardo said.

The Office of Congressman Gonzales for its part will help ensure the beneficiaries are well-trained and are able to make a living out of bamboo products sourced at the plantations. Cong. Gonzalez added that his Office will establish a bamboo palace in Kawakawa to promote the importance of bamboo as a cheap substitute to wood. Cong. Gonzales said he is most fortunate to be part of the MOU signing in order to provide livelihood to his constituents and promote environmental awareness by having multi species of bamboo in the City. He also expresed gratefulness to DENR for its assistance.

The bamboo gene bank will have in its collection the following species:

Local Name

Scientific Name

Origin

1. Anos

Schizostachyum lima (Blanco) Merill

Philippines

2. Bayog

Bambusa merrilliana (Elmer) Rojo & Roxas comb. nov.

Philippines

3. Black bamboo

Phyllostachys nigra (Lodd.) Munro.

China, Japan

4. Bikal

Schizostachyum dielsianum  (Pilger) Merr.

Philippines

5. Bolo, Botong

Gigantochloa levis (Blanco) Merrill

Philippines

6. Buddha’s belly   Bamboo

Bambusa ventricosa

Vietnam, Taiwan and Southern China 

7. Buho

Schizostachyum lumampao  (Blanco) Merrill

Philippines

8. Giant bamboo

Dendrocalamus asper  (Schultes et.) Backerex Heyne

Southeast Asia

9. Hedge bamboo

Bambusa multiplex (Lour.) Raeuschel ex. J.A. and J.A. Schultes

Indo-China and Southern China

10. Iron bamboo

Guadua angustifolia Kunth

Northeastern South America to Panama

11. Kauayan Kiling

Bambusa vulgaris Scrad. ex. Wendl.

Asia

12. Kauayan Tinik

Bambusa blumeana Schultes f.

Philippines

13. Golden/ Yellow bamboo

Bambusa vulgaris Schrad ex Wendl var striata (Lodd. Ex Lindl.) Gamble

China, US, Puerto rico, Nicaragua

14. Pink bamboo

Gigantochloa kuring Widjaja

Sumatra

15. Wamin

Bambusa vulgaris Schrad. Ex. Wendl cv. Wamin McClure

Southern China

16. Laak

Bambusa sp.1

Philippines

The layout of the site will include 9,652 sq m comprised of kawayang tinik plantation, the gene bank of bambusetum covering 8,525 sq m and a nursery covering 8,463 sq m.

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According to RED Gonzales, FRC is a pioneering partner in this endeavor. He is optimistic the bamboo plantation will supports the livelihood of locals given its potential in the market today. He is bound to funnel more funds from private sector, introduce the project to local industries and generate greater support for this project. He said  last year he discussed this with former Ligao City Mayor Linda Gonzales and promised to bring in private entities to support it. RED Gonzales is able to generate same support for Bicol National Park’s reforestation project with Energy Development Corporation.

Press Release: October 29, 2013