DENR vows to fast-track tree-cutting, new constructions moratorium in Baguio

BAGUIO CITY — Environment chief Roy Cimatu committed to help fast-track the issuance of an executive order imposing a moratorium on the construction of commercial buildings and tree-cutting in the city.

Cimatu who paid a call on Mayor Benjamin Magalong on Friday here said his office made some recommendations to the proposed moratorium and will make a follow through with Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea.

The environment chief and the city mayor inspected Baguio City’s sewerage treatment plant in North Sanitary Camp and the Environmental Recycling System site in Irisan barangay, two of the city’s most crucial environmental facilities.

“We all know that Baguio City’s carrying capacity had been exceeded and the executive order granting a moratorium may be the right key to stop once and for all the congestion problem caused by commercial constructions and residential constructions in hazardous areas,”
Sec. Cimatu said.

The DENR sees no problem in implementing the moratorium. There are built-in policies and procedures being applied by the DENR and the local government unit that can readily be applied, Cimatu said.

Magalong had pushed for the moratorium citing serious environmental issues being faced by the city.

The moratorium was proposed to stop the construction of commercial buildings and cutting of trees for one year and to include a funding component to enable the city to implement rehabilitative programs particularly on the upgrading and expansion of its sewerage treatment system.

Magalong earlier said President Rodrigo Duterte approved in principle the proposal for tree-cutting and building moratorium in the city. ●