The forest cover of ARMM increased by 6.8 percent or a total of 20 thousand hectares since the implementation of Executive Order No. 1 or the Total Logging Ban all throughout the region.
For more than four years as the regional secretary of the department, Kedtag restructured the department’s management operations and approaches to ensure the functionalities of each and every employees from the five provinces of the region.
“When I was appointed, I revisited and strengthened the department’s Mission-Vision. Hindi kasi magwowork ng maayos ang organization kung watak-watak, dapat may direction na tatahakin, we went down to the provincial directors, we had management conferences, kasi dapat lahat kasali sa pagpaplano, teamwork is very important.”
Secretary Kedtag after his third confirmation assured more hard work to maintain and strengthen the department’s efforts on environmental integrity.
Kedtag said mining operations in the region has been halted following a review by the DENR on their compliance to the mining companies’ environmental and social responsibility compliance. The department required five big mining firms a “catch up” plan for their operation in the region. “Mining, if not monitored, destroys the topography and natural habitat of the land”. He said.
Liguasan Marsh, the 286,000 hectare swampland situated in the boundaries of Maguindanao, North Cotabato and Sultan Kudarat provinces, would remain a conservation area for bountiful flora and fauna resources.
Secretary Kahal Kedtag said that a 164-million budget was set aside for the protection and development of the marshland.
With such development, Kedtag emphasized that it is about time that ARMM has a well-founded environment code that should also include responsible mining act.
The secretary also hopes for the approval of the “Palaw 2020”, the department’s six-year roadmap that promulgates Climate Change Mitigations through massive tree planting activities and protection and rehabilitation of watershed areas in the region.
DENR-ARMM is also pushing for the submission of local government units (LGUs) by the end of the month of their respective Solid Waste Management Plan (SWMP) or face cases in court. “We need to implement the mandates of R.A 9003, it is an obligation to every LGU”. Kedtag said.
Kedtag also assured the department's contribution and technical support to the Integrated Natural Resources and Environmental Management Project (INREMP).
Kedtag, during his confirmation appealed for a continuous support not only to the officials and employees of DENR-ARMM but all the stakeholders and the public to all the endeavors of the department.