UPLB-INREM project on payment for ecosystem services conducts FGDs in Nueva Vizcaya

Aiming to gather information on the present situation of the Barobbob Watershed, the UPLB Center for Integrated Natural Resources and Environment Management (INREM) project team of the DOST-PCAARRD funded project “Research for Development: Payment for Ecosystem Services Outcome for Sustainable Water Provision (R4D: PESO SWaP) in Barobbob Watershed, Nueva Vizcaya, Philippines,” held its first face-to-face focus group discussions (FGDs) with the Provincial Government of Nueva Vizcaya, Barobbob Watershed occupants, farmers, and irrigators on April 11-13.

The project team together with Gov. Carlos Padilla and officers of PLGU Nueva Vizcaya (From left to right: Asst. Prof. Jan Joseph Dida, project staff; Engr. Danilo Dominguez, waterworks superintendent, Sheerah Louise Tasico, science research specialist; Dr. Catherine de Luna, project staff; Dr. Asa Jose Sajise, project staff; Gov. Carlos Padilla; Dr. Canesio Predo, project staff; Dr. Arvin Vallesteros, project consultant; Engr. Maria Jonem Gacad, asst. provincial planning and development coordinator; Adelaine Arganda, university research associate, ENR Officer Tito Tanguilig; and For. Roger Haboc, Jr.)

The project team, composed of Dr. Catherine de Luna, researcher; Asst. Prof. Jan Joseph Dida, project staff; Dr. Arvin Vallesteros, a consultant from the Nueva Vizcaya State University (NVSU); Sheerah Louise Tasico, researcher; Adelaine Arganda, researcher; and led by Dr. Asa Jose U. Sajise and Dr. Canesio D. Predo, both project staff, visited the offices of the Provincial Local Government of Nueva Vizcaya (PLGU Nueva Vizcaya), Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (PENRO), National Irrigation Administration Nueva Vizcaya (NIA), and the Local Government of Bayombong (LGU Bayombong). 

Padilla graced the meeting held at the office of the PLGU Nueva Vizcaya and discussed the development projects in the province. He expressed his appreciation for the project and his hopes for it to succeed and ramped up to other bigger watersheds in Nueva Vizcaya.

Forty-one participants attended the FGD with the Barobbob Watershed occupants, farmers, and irrigators at the Barangay Hall of Masoc, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya. 

They represented the Barobbob Watershed Occupants Association, Paoac Upland Farmers Association, and Irrigators Associations in the Municipality of Bayombong. 

Marilyn Juan, municipal environment and natural resources officer, and representatives from the Municipal Agriculture Office of LGU Bayombong and For. Rommel Yogyog, Barobbob Watershed coordinator, also participated in the activity. 

FGD in Barangay Hall of Brgy. Masoc, Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya

The FGD started with the project overview presentation and proceeded to discuss the scope of the activity. 

A dialogue followed, focusing on the current situation, and the water quantity and quality produced by the Barobbob watershed. 

The project team also visited a site at the Barobbob spring to observe the state of the watershed and the condition of the pipes and water reservoir in the area.

PESO-SWaP is a project implemented by the Interdisciplinary Studies Center for Integrated Natural Resources and Environment Management from 2021 to 2023. 

INREM is chaired by Dr. Juan M. Pulhin, one of the UPLB scientists who has been contributing to the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change over the years. (Adelaine C. Arganda)