Bamboo craft industry to be institutionalized

BAGUIO CITY  – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance institutionalizing the propagation and planting of bamboo and strengthening the bamboo craft industry in the city.

The ordinance authored by Councilor Lilia A. Fariñas stated that the institutionalization of the propagation and planting of bamboo and the strengthening of the bamboo craft industry will be geared towards the planting of bamboo to control and prevent erosion in landslide-prone areas in the city; the creation of additional tourism attractions such as the putting up of more bamboo museums or bamboo gardens to showcase the importance of bamboo as a handicraft, food, medicine, or other by-products and the introduction of bamboo as ornamental or garden plants for landscaping and environmental protection.

The ordinance designated the Cordillera office of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR-CAR), in coordination with the forestry division of the City Environment and Parks Management Office (CEPMO), to assist in the education and training of barangay officials as well as government personnel under the CEPMO on the propagation, utilization and development of bamboo through seminars, which will also incorporate the appropriate strategies beneficial for the preservation and protection of the environment.

Among the proposed strategies and activities to be undertaken in the conduct of the seminars include advocacy lectures, environmental protection, livelihood projects, bamboo technology and handicraft.

The ordinance added the CEPMO shall closely monitor the implementation of the barangay bamboo planting, propagation and bamboo craft development to be able to significantly increase the existence of bamboo gardens around the city, especially in erosion-prone communities in the different parts of the city.

Fariñas pointed out there is a need to reiterate previous proposals relative to the institutionalization of the propagation and plating of bamboo and strengthen the bamboo craft industry to serve as an added boost to the growth of the local tourism industry and provide sustainable sources of livelihood for the residents living in the different barangays.

Resolution No. 404, series of 1996 sought the assistance of DENR-CAR in the education and training of the barangay officials on the propagation, utilization and development of the bamboo through appropriate seminars and such similar activities.

According to her, due to the rising awareness on the serious negative effects of global warming and climate change around the world, environmental programs as well as livelihood generation had been the major concerns of the previous and present leaders, and in many parts of the world bamboo has played a major factor in protecting the environment while the bamboo industry has been the major source of livelihood to many people.

Bamboo, through research, has been found to be very effective in preventing erosion and there are bamboo varieties which can be planted in high risk areas to prevent erosion. In the city, there are still areas where bamboo could be planted to prevent erosion or simply as ornamental plants within backyards.

By Dexter A. See

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