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No price tag: Rep Sato commits to continue ecological integrity of Occidental Mindoro

Nov 23, 2021 @ 14:09

Occidental Mindoro Rep. Josephine Sato committed on Tuesday to continue ensuring the ecological integrity of the province as she vowed solid support for programs and advocacies that would protect and conserve the environmental jewels of the island.

“There is no price tag on environment sustainability. No promise of economic benefit can outweigh the importance of environment sustainability and biodiversity conservation,” Sato said in a statement.

Sato, who has been pushing for the passage of measures in the House of Representatives to protect the environment, signed a 25-year moratorium on all forms of mining when she was the governor of Occidental Mindoro in 2009.

“There is no planet B, we do not have a spare planet. Compromising the environment and our biodiversity will have far reaching adverse impact and will put the next generation in dire condition. So, if there’s a plan, program, project or any activity that may potentially harm the environment, don’t do it,” added Sato, who is running for governor.

Sato is behind the enactment of the landmark Expanded National Integrated Protected Areas System (ENIPAS) Act of 2018 (Republic Act 11038), which increased to 107 the country’s total protected areas spanning 15 regions, across 53 provinces covering over three million hectares or roughly 10% of the Philippines’ land area.

She is also behind the measures strengthening the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act, institutionalizing the national policy on access and benefit-sharing from the utilization of the Philippine Genetic Resources (PGRAB), institutionalizing the Tamaraw Conservation Program, and institutionalizing the policy declaring the entire island of Mindoro as a mining-free zone.

Sato is currently serving as a United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) Global Legislative Champion for Biodiversity and Environment.

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