The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Bicol, headed by Regional Executive Director Atty. Antonio A. Abawag, in partnership with the Local Government Unit of Ligao spearheaded the conduct of a three-part training on public relations, information and social marketing on DENR’s 10 Priority Programs highlighting the salient features of Presidential Decree 1067, otherwise known as the “Water Code of the Philippines” and Water Resource Use Permitting.

The learning event which was participated in by the Barangay Captains of LGU Ligao City threshed out the following: (1) DENR’s vision, mission, plans and programs; (2) salient features of the Water Code of the Philippines and water resource use permitting; (3) Water Permit application; (4) salient features of the Wildlife Act and mainstreaming of Gender and Development (GAD) concerns in environmental programs; (5) Philippine biodiversity; (6) Republic Act 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000; and (7) geohazard awareness and responsible mining.

Water Resource Utilization Section (WRUS) OIC-Chief Vivian B. Escoto, also Assistant Division Chief of Licenses, Patents and Deeds Division (LPDD) said that the country is facing some key water issues and challenges such as deforestation and sedimentation of rivers and lakes including reservoirs affecting the water quality and limiting the flow capacity of these water bodies.

Further, she stressed that permits must be secured from the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) through the DENR for appropriation of water for any purpose, except for purely domestic, provided that such use shall be registered.

Assistant Division Chief Escoto said that the IEC campaign aims to instill to the BLGUs the value of awareness and appreciation of the protection, conservation, and management of our country's environment and natural resources since they will be the Department’s effective partner and force multiplier in changing behavior of the people towards environmental stewardship.