As the main agency responsible for the conservation, management, development, and effective use of the country’s environment and natural resources, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) officially welcomed the New Year with the reaffirmation of commitment to fulfilling its mandate by continuing past successes and making it sustainable and more resilient.

In its New Year Reception on January 27, Secretary Antonia Loyzaga led over 90 DENR officials including newly appointed Undersecretaries, Assistant Secretaries, Bureau and Line Directors, Office Directors, and Regional Executive Directors in celebrating the Department’s achievements in 2022 and goals for 2023.

In her keynote address, Loyzaga challenged the DENR workforce to set higher standards as she highlighted the department’s achievements in the past year, such as the commitments it received from development partners that strengthened cooperation and expanded opportunities for partnership.

“The choices and decisions we make in the next few years will determine our country’s future and our contribution to the shared goals of our country. We need to make this progress continue and make it resilient and sustainable,” said Loyzaga at the event held in Tagaytay City.

She assured everyone that the directions of the DENR will be in line with that of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s where the country’s resilience and adaptation to climate change remains a priority. She underscored the President’s statement that “preservation of the environment is the preservation of life.”

“We will continue to strive to ensure that the department’s priorities, plans, programs, and policies are aligned with the President’s pronouncement regarding the nexus between climate change, biodiversity, our natural resources, and resilient and inclusive development for our country,” Loyzaga stressed.

The event also served as the culmination of the DENR’s Reprogramming Workshop where it recast the Programs, Activities, and Projects (PAPs) of the 16 regions for 2023 to ensure that it is in line with the direction of the President and his administration, and the Philippine Development Plan for 2023-2028.

Among the DENR’s achievements in 2022 were the establishment of a national natural resource geospatial database and the mobilization of P2-billion in additional funding from development partners related to nature-based solutions, climate action, and preparation for carbon and biodiversity credit markets.

Loyzaga reiterated that under her stewardship, the DENR will be transparent and participatory, where stakeholders are able to dialogue with the department regarding its plans, programs, and policies.

She said the department will also be trans-disciplinary and adapt a more holistic approach in its programs and strategies.

Loyzaga likewise said that the DENR’s mantra of “co-ownership and common but differentiated responsibilities” for protecting the natural environment will be deeply embedded in the department.

The event also included the oath taking of newly elected and appointed officials of the DENR Association of Career Executives (ACE) along with its new President, Undersecretary for Finance, Information Systems and Climate Change Analiza Rebuelta-Teh. Third-level DENR employees who are Career Executive Service Officers and Career Executive Service Eligibles make up the corporation known as DENR-ACE.

Upon assumption as Secretary, Loyzaga expressed her aim for ethical, collaborative, efficient, and science-based management of the country’s environment and natural resources under her leadership. ###