Issue of January 8, 2012
Mt. Province

102nd Baguio Day Anniversary Issue
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PES seen to save, revive the Cordillera’s water cradle
by Lito Dar / PIA

Department of Agriculture Regional Executive Director Marilyn Sta. Catalina is pushing for the protection of the region’s watersheds through the aggressive implementation of the Payment for Environmental and Ecological Services (PES).

PES is created to ensure financial sustainability and support the community watershed management initiatives.

Watershed management in the Cordillera region is a struggle since a large portion of its mountains is denuded, causing problems on the environment.

Sta. Catalina said that with the rapid deterioration of natural resources in the country, the remaining forest areas and other potential natural resources should be protected, preserved, and conserved.

The PES technology carries out two principles. These are payment for environmental-ecological services if benefitting from it, and payment to land owners-stewards whose natural capital produces the services.

Among the process in the establishment of PES include the establishment of a baseline which is essential for planning and assessment, identification of the product or service that will be transacted as well as the service provider which covers determining of property rights on the production system for the product or service and the beneficiaries, and agreeing on the mechanism of transaction.

Agreement on the mode of payment, determining that need for mediator and identifying their roles, identifying constraints to sustainability of transactions, and defining and instituting a conflict resolution mechanism are also among the steps.

Sta. Catalina said that through PES, financial sustainability for watershed management could be attained and reviving watersheds is not too far from reach.

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