Greening for the Watershed
Residents of Brgy. Poblacion in Kasibu town and nearby communities are worry-free as they still enjoy free water supply coming from Magpayao Watershed, an area enriched through the National Greening Program (NGP).
According to local officials, Magpayao Watershed usually runs out of water during summer seasons but not until they started planting forest trees to the 50-hectare watershed area in 2012 through the NGP grant awarded by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to the Local Government Unit of Kasibu.
The barren areas in the watershed were planted with around 50,000 forest trees which include Narra, Tuai and Mahogany that are a decade old now.
“Bukod sa sinusuplayan ng watershed ang munisipyo namin, nakakatulong din ito sa hanap-buhay ng mga nasa komunidad ng Magpayao,” said Eva Budong, environmental management specialist of Kasibu.
With the assistance of the DENR, the municipal ENR office conducts regular monitoring in the watershed as they ensure no resident is conducting illegal activities in the forested areas.
The LGU also manage a Municipal Ecological Forest Park, an NGP plantation established in barangay Alloy in 2011. The area is planted with tree species to include Narra, Tuai, Mahogany, Alnus, Tibig, Rubber Tree and coffee.
The park also houses several livelihood initiatives of the municipality such as bee culturing, mushroom production, vermicomposting, and wild pig farming.
“Bukod sa tourism na pwedeng mai-offer ng NGP plantation, nagsimula rin kaming magsagawa ng iba’t-ibang livelihood activities dito para ma-introduce din namin ito sa mga residente ng Kasibu,” said Budong. She explained these livelihood alternatives shall help divert the attention of some residents who practice slash-and-burn farming.