Any time this week, it will be crucial and at the same time exciting, especially for people who are advocates of environment protection and preservation. As scheduled, this Wednesday (March 1), will be the day where the senate’s CA (Commission on Appointments), headed by the senate president, will decide on the fate of Sec. Gina Lopez. It’s either she will be confirmed or be bypassed by the said powerful committee.

Image via senate.gov.ph

But for the supporters of the lady cabinet executive, they are confident that she is the most qualify person to occupy that said post because of her strong commitment in preserving the country’s natural resources and get rid of mining operators who are detrimental to the environment.After we made some research, we decided to come up with eight (8) reasons why Sec. Gina Lopez must be confirmed as DENR head.

  1. She became the Managing Director of one of the Philippines’ biggest non-government organizations, the ABS-CBN Foundation, anon-stocknon-profit socio-civic organization of the network that facilitates social programs and outreach to the public. Initially, the organization’s primary responsibilities were to generate welfare funds by broadcasting the plight of those in need of assistance and ensuring the proper allocation and utilization of solicited help. Eventually, AFI restructured itself to compensate an all-around developmental approach as its mission to provide a better quality of life for every Filipino in general and every Filipino child in particular. All development programs for the grassroots carry a significant slant targeted to directly benefit children, their families, and the community.
  2. She spearheaded Bantay Kalikasan, for which she received the 1997 International Public Relations Award of Excellence for the Environment and Outstanding Manilans Award for the Environment in 2009.
  3. She initiatedBantay Bata 163, the country’s first media-based hotline. In 1997, Bantay Bata was the United Nations Grand Awardee for Excellence besting 187 countries all over the world.
  4. Ms. Lopez also initiated the rehabilitation of thePasig Riverand nearby urban esteros through the KapitBisig Para sa Ilog Pasig project. For her efforts in rehabilitating the river, she was appointed in 2010 by President Benigno S. Aquino as the Chairperson of the Pasig River Rehabilitation Commission. Her efforts in the commission led to a river rehabilitation revolution which cleansed numerous tributaries in the Pasig river system. She was also responsible for the reforestation of the La Mesa Watershed Reservation, the last remaining forest zone in Metro Manila.
  5. Awards and recognition received:
  • United Nations Grand Awardee for Excellence (1997) for the Bantay Bata 163which she initiated and advocated
  • International Public Relations Award of Excellence for the Environment (1997)
  • Outstanding Manilans Award for the Environment (2009)
  • UNESCO Kalinga Award, where she was the first Southeast Asian to receive the prestigious award
  • Doctorate Degree in Humanities, HonorisCausa from the Ateneo de Naga University

  1. A mother of two boys (Benjamin and Roberto), she is the eldest daughter of Eugenio “Gerry” Lopez, Jr. She went toAssumption Collegeand Newton College of the Sacred Heart in Boston. She has a Master’s Degree in Development Management from the Asian Institute of Management.

  1. Lopez is the lead convener of anti-mining group Save Palawan Movement, a multi-sectoral coalition of concerned environmental, legal religious and other civic groups that opposes mining activities in the said southern Luzon island province. The situation in the province gained national attention when radio broadcaster and staunch mining critic Gerry Ortega was shot to death in January 2011.
  2. She opposed the planned construction of an underwater resort and theme park in Palawan. She’s 62 years old.

(References: wikipedia.org, filipinoscribe.com)

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