Pasonanca Watershed Bill passes committee level in Congress PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 10 March 2017 13:31

The House Committee on Natural Resources has approved on Wednesday the passage of House Bill 124, also known as the Pasonanca Watershed Bill, authored by Congressman Celso Lobregat of Zamboanga City.

The Committee, headed by Congressman Carlos Isagani Zarate, have seen the significance and vitality of the said bill which contributes to the preservation of one of the seven remaining intact and vegetated watersheds in the entire country.

The Pasonanca Watershed Bill was earlier referred to the Committee on Natural Resources upon filing since it has the jurisdiction in all matters directly and principally related to natural resources, except energy and fisheries resources, and their exploration, conversation, management and utilization, lands of the public domain, mines and minerals, forests, parks and wildlife, and marine resources.

Lobregat said the nod of the said committee to this bill is very timely, because Zamboanga City Water District, who manages the watershed, is in the process of developing their facilities to protect and preserve the vegetated watershed of the city.

“We all very well know that the preservation of our watershed is very important, that’s why I am seeking the immediate approval of this in congress all the way to the senate, to ensure the protection of our natural resources,” Lobregat said.

In January 18, 2017, Lobregat filed House Bill 124 otherwise known as an act declaring the Pasonanca Watershed Forest Reserve located in this city, as a protected area under the category of natural park and providing for its management.

The bill intends to establish the Pasonanca Watershed Forest Reserve in Zamboanga City as a Protected area under the category of natural Park, and its peripheral areas as buffer zones providing for its management, and for other purposes.

Lobregat said, the measure was necessary to preserve the city’s watershed cover in order to protect the city’s water source not only for the present generation, but for the future residents of the city.

The bill also expanded the coverage of protection to include the watershed’s periphery for better management of its land area and providing additional buffer to the city’s water cover.

Lobregat expressed optimism the bill will get equal support from his colleagues and also the senate, so it can finally be enacted into law by President Rodrigo Duterte the soonest. (Dexter Yap)