Date Posted October 2016
ON AUGUST 25, 2016, a team from the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority (FPA) organized an information dissemination campaign in the Municipality of Baras, Rizal in compliance with the Department of Agriculture (DA) Mandamus and Supreme Court (SC) Order relative to the 2011-2015 Medium Term Operational Plan for Manila Bay Coastal Strategy (OPMBCS). In line with the SC Decision under G.R. No. 171947, the FPA together with several government agencies are enjoined to clean, rehabilitate and preserve the Manila Bay by monitoring and eliminating industrial and agricultural wastes.
The FPA Team was composed of the FPA-Fertilizer Regulations Division (FRD) staff including Ms. Suzettie M. Alcaide, Senior Agriculturist and Ms. Maria Regina Lagance, Agriculturist II and the FPA-Field Operations Coordinating Unit (FOCU) staff including Mr. Jose Jim B. Blanco, Special Investigator and Officer-in-Charge for Rizal province and Ms. Elizabeth P. Perlado, Economic Researcher. A total of 50 participants attended the said activity, representing the 19 farmers/fisherfolk associations focused on growing high-value commercial crops, livestock, rice and vegetables. It was held in coordination with the Baras Municipal Agricultural Office (MAO) led by Engr. Jonathan B. Argueza, Supervising Agriculturist. He was assisted by Mr. Samson Argueza, Farm Worker I, who served as the activity host and other MAO staff. Baras Mayor Hon. Kathrine B. Robles graced the activity and acknowledged the effort of the FPA in educating the farmers on the conservation and preservation of Manila Bay and other natural resources. “This [project] will benefit not only the present but the future generation as well,” she said. The objective of the Mandamus is to lessen pollution loading in Manila Bay by 2017 in order to classify and maintain its water as Class SB, which is safe for fishing, swimming and conducting other recreational activities. Hence, the FPA within its mandate holds trainings on the proper use and handling of fertilizers and pesticides and their effects to the community and environment.
For this specific campaign, the FPA team conducted a series of presentations which tackled the following matters: 1) overview of the Manila Bay clean-up project and rationale of the information dissemination campaign; 2) situational updates on the status of the Manila Bay; 3) proper waste segregation; and 4) safe and judicious use of fertilizer and pesticide. To better inform and educate the participants, relevant information materials such as Gabay sa Tamang Paggamit ng Abono at Pestisidyo brochures, Lingap sa Masa comics, and Tulong-tulong sa Manila Bay Itaguyod: Programang Pangkapaligiran at Pangkinabukasan booklets were distributed. Towards the end of the campaign, Mr. Manuel Golla, Municipal Agriculture and Fisheries Council (MAFC) President, delivered a brief closing remarks expressing his and the participants’ gratitude toward FPA for conducting this activity and committed that their learnings will be extended to all other farmers and fisherfolk in the municipality.