Press Releases

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has issued the revised guidelines in the classification and reporting standards of exploration results, mineral resources and mineral reserves.
The new guidelines, embodied in DENR Administrative Order (DAO) No. 2023-05 recently signed by Secretary Antonia Loyzaga, amended DAO 2010-09 to allow the local mining industry to adopt with advances and upgrades of internationally accepted standards as set out in the Philippine Mineral Reporting Code of 2020 (PMRC 2020).
The compliance of mining contractors, permittees, permit holders and operators, and mining applicants with the new DAO is seen to expedite the evaluation and development of mining projects, as a result of the harmonization and streamlining of the entire reporting process related to mineral exploration results.
Among other changes, DAO 2023-05 updated some terminologies, such as replacing “Competent Person” with Accredited Competent Person” or ACP to refer to an industry professional duly accredited by the Philippine Society of Mining Engineers (PSEM), the Geological Society of the Philippines (GSP), and the Society of the Metallurgical Engineers of the Philippines (SMEP), or other similar professional organizations accredited by the Professional Regulation Commission. It also replaced the terms “ore reserve” with “mineral reserve,” and “potential or target mineral resources” with “exploration targets.”
The updated guidelines also entailed consideration of “modifying factors,” which are applied to mineral resources to support mine planning and final evaluation of the economic viability of mineral deposits before they are converted to mineral reserves. These may include mining, processing, metallurgical, infrastructure, economic, marketing, legal, environmental, social, and governmental factors.
The latest DAO provided an expanded or detailed checklist of assessment or reporting criteria that must be considered by an ACP in preparing a report on exploration results, mineral resources, or mineral reserves. Should any item in the checklist not be discussed, the ACP must explain the reason for such.
Section 5 of DAO 2023-05 also introduced technical studies, which include scoping, pre-feasibility, and feasibility studies.
Other revisions include the required reporting of metal equivalents, as well as non-technical aspects of reporting of items, notably commodity pricing and marketing, permitting, legal requirements and sustainability considerations.
The latest DAO explicitly requires ACPs to prepare the necessary reports for public disclosure. Specifically, reporting of exploration results and mineral resources shall be disclosed by ACP geologist, while that for mineral reserves shall be disclosed by ACP mining engineer.
Additionally, the ACP metallurgical engineer shall disclose reporting of metallurgical test works that form part of a feasibility study of a mineral project.
Mineral industry players will be given a transition period of two years from the approval of DAO 2023-05 to adjust to the revised guidelines.
Prior to PMRC 2020, the industry had been adopting public reporting standards set under PMRC 2007 which was then compatible with the Australasian Joint Ore Reserves Committee (JORC) Code of 2004 and the Committee for Mineral Reserves International Reporting Standards (CRIRSCO) International Reporting Template of 2006.
The CRIRSCO Template and the JORC Code have since been upgraded in 2019 and 2012, respectively, rendering the PMRC 2007 incompatible with its standards.
The revision of the PMRC to its 2020 edition was undertaken by the PMRC Committee, whose member-organizations include PSEM, GSP, and SMEP along with minerals industry-related organizations and bodies, such as the Philippine Stock Exchange Inc., the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines, the Philippine Mining and Exploration Association, the Philippines-Australia Business Council, and the Philippine Chamber of Coal Mines. #

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Antonia Loyzaga said women and children are most vulnerable in a post-disaster situation, citing the need to invest in gender inclusive development programs for their protection during a High-Level Panel on Accelerating Gender-Responsive Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) on May 17 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

As part of a panel of international leaders and experts, Loyzaga discussed the impact of disasters to gender equality in the Philippines, the country’s policies to address any inequalities, and the intersectionality of vulnerability which is linked to women’s multiple roles and social identities.

“For inequality of women in the Philippines, we realize that loss of livelihood, shelter, access to safe water, sanitation, education, as well as capital for livelihoods continuing post-recovery, these are all part of the impacts that disasters have had on women in the country,” Loyzaga said. “Therefore, we need to address both mental health, as well as specific issues that are related to age and social status of women that are affected by disasters.”

Further, Loyzaga cited a 2022 report by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) which stated that there are 1.83 million overseas Filipino workers, 60.2 percent of which were women.

This, she explained, meant that these women are exposed not just to hazards within the Philippines, but also in other countries where they work. The social impacts that they experience abroad also resonate to their families living in the Philippines.

The Environment Secretary cited two Philippine laws that recognize the unique vulnerability of women, and how the country invests in their resilience – Republic Act (RA) 9710 or the Magna Carta for Women, and RA 10121 or the Philippine DRR and Management Act of 2010.

The Magna Carta for Women guarantees women and the marginalized sector access to food security, shelter, credit, social services and protection, including the maintenance of their cultural identities. Meanwhile, the Philippine DRR and Management Act of 2010 highlights the integration of gender and social inclusion in all disaster management policies of the country.

In addition, Loyzaga shared that the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) has been developing and updating its DRR mainstreaming framework, which includes a gender DRR checklist for all government programs and projects, while the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) has implemented the collection of sex-disaggregated data and gender-related information in reporting.

However, she said these were just the “early days,” and policies and programs must be developed to address pressing issues, such as human trafficking of women and girls, who are most vulnerable post-disaster.

“We do need to invest both in the transdisciplinary understanding of vulnerability, particularly gender-based vulnerability, and the multiple roles that women play in order for us to understand how risk may cascade through those roles and address the vulnerability once and for all,” Loyzaga said.

The High-Level Panel focused on accelerating action for gender responsive disaster risk reduction, where ministers, experts, and international organization leaders discussed how the calls to action contained in the political declaration can be taken towards concrete solutions that can be integrated to the Midterm Review of the Sendai Framework.

Speakers included Vasiti Soko, Director, National Disaster Management Office, Fiji; Sima Sami Bahous, Executive Director, UN Women; Mami Mizutori, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction and Head of UNDRR; Mwanahamisi Singano, Senior Global Policy Lead, Women's Environment & Development Organization; Ib Petersen, Deputy Executive Director, UN Population Fund; Bernice Van Bronkhorst, Global Director for Urban, Resilience and Land Global Practice, World Bank; Shawn Tupper, Deputy Minister of Public Safety of Canada; Sarah Hendricks, Director of the Policy, Programme and Intergovernmental Division at UN Women; and Beth Delaney, First Assistant Secretary, Humanitarian Division at Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Loyzaga was designated by President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. as Head of the Philippine Delegation to the High-Level Meeting on the Midterm Review of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. ##


DENR Secretary Maria Antonia Yulo Loyzaga during the Public Hearing of the Committee on Economic Affairs (Subcommittee on Philippine Ecosystem and Natural Capital Accounting System Law and Blue Economy) on 29 May 2023

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on Monday threw its support behind a bill aiming to develop a system to account for the full value of the country’s natural assets that contribute to economic development.

“We must measure what we treasure as a country,” DENR Secretary Antonia Loyzaga told the Senate Committee on Economic Affairs during its hearing on the proposed Philippine Ecosystem and Natural Capital Accounting System (PENCAS).

Three senators —Loren Legarda, Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr., and Joel Villanueva—have separately filed with the Senate similar bills seeking to institutionalize PENCAS. The counterpart measure was filed by Negros Occidental 3rd District Rep. Jose Francisco “Kiko” Benitez in the House of Representatives.

“The DENR strongly and categorically supports the legislative measures that aim to institutionalize PENCAS, which will not only provide us with a snapshot of the environment and its contribution to the economy,” Loyzaga said.

“PENCAS help map possible directions in the development of the nation beyond traditional indicators and allow us to explore multiple trajectories for social, economic, and environment development from the valuation of our natural resources,” she added.
Loyzaga said PENCAS will not only serve as a tool for determining the contributions of ecosystems to economic development, but also for better management of natural resources and improving climate and disaster resilience.

“The Department believes that these bills will more accurately reflect the true state of the nation’s wealth as derived from its natural resources. It will enable strategic planning for sustainable development and climate and disaster resilience by establishing the baseline accounts for the Philippine Development Plan,” she pointed out.

Loyzaga said PENCAS may serve as a core means of achieving agendas on biodiversity, climate, Sustainable Development Goals, and green recovery; lay out a comprehensive data framework of natural capital statistics and accounts; and provide tools and measures to contribute to the protection, conservation, restoration and resiliency of ecosystems.

Moreover, Loyzaga said PENCAS will help equip the Water Resources Management Office in the DENR, which was recently created by virtue of Executive Order No. 22 issued by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
She said PENCAS can provide information on the physical flows of water within and between the economy and the environment; stocks of water assets and changes to these stocks; economic activity; and transactions related to water resources.

Loyzaga disclosed that the DENR had already identified significant actions it will undertake in support of PENCAS in line with its mandates and the Roadmap to Institutionalize Natural Capital Accounting in the Philippines.

The DENR, she said, will lead efforts to put in place site-specific and area-based ecosystem accounts; establish the national geospatial database for natural resources as key reference to natural capital accounting; promote awareness on valuable opportunities and benefits of the natural environment, biodiversity and ecosystem; ensure availability of tools, methods and skills; and cooperate with space agencies and spatial data providers to optimize the utilization of ground- and space-based monitoring in establishing the baseline conditions of ecosystems.

Legarda, who presided the Senate hearing, said that by institutionalizing PENCAS "it will allow government to measure environmental inputs and outputs, and which information is vital for economic management and policy making."

To recall, the DENR established its national natural resource geospatial database under Loyzaga’s leadership to enable it to identify and value the country’s natural resources, while keeping in mind how these should be sustainably developed and managed.
Loyzaga said the DENR supports the provisions in the PENCAS bills pertaining to the establishment of a dedicated unit to carry out its responsibilities and allocating budgetary resources to meet the necessary requirements for the effective implementation of the proposed system.

However, she said the agency suggests that PENCAS establish clear concepts, definitions and classifications of ecosystem services and their components to be able to set up an innovative payment scheme for ecological services that will encourage local governments and businesses to reward people’s efforts. #

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is exploring a potential partnership with global conservation organization World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) to boost efforts toward preserving the country’s rich biological diversity and protecting threatened species and their habitats amid climate change.

DENR Secretary Antonia Loyzaga addressed over 150 WWF International leaders from 80 countries during the 2023 WWF Annual Conference held in Puerto Princesa, Palawan on May 25. Founded in 1961, WWF is the world’s leading independent conservation organization that aims to conserve and restore biodiversity, and ensure the sustainable use of natural resources to support current and future generations.

Leaders included newly-appointed WWF International President Dr. Adil Najam, Director General Dr. Kirsten Shujit, President ad interim Neville Isdell, and WWF Philippines Chairperson Maribel Garcia and Executive Director Trin Custodio. Joining them were WWF International Board Member and former Department of Energy Secretary Vince Perez.

DENR Secretary Antonia Loyzaga said that while the Philippines is one of the 18 mega-biodiverse countries and considered to be the richest marine ecoregion on the planet, it is also one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots with at least 700 threatened species.

“We must now prioritize restoration of degraded areas to prevent and reverse species loss, and work together towards investing in the regeneration of life on land and below water to achieve a nature-positive world,” Loyzaga said during her keynote speech.

“I would like to extend an invitation to WWF to work with the ASEAN Center for Biodiversity, the Manila Observatory, and the DENR on climate change-related species vulnerability analysis by biogeographic region using high-resolution scenarios, and the adoption of threatened endemic species in order to move them away from the threat of extinction,” she added.

Loyzaga also urged WWF to work with DENR on innovative approaches for corporate responsibilities through the adoption of spatial finance.

According to Loyzaga, a whole-of-society approach is needed to halt and reverse biodiversity loss, accelerate climate action, and strengthen disaster resilience which are key components of the Philippine Development Plan.

“We must ensure a balance between advancing human development and protecting biodiversity, and the DENR is committed to investing in urgent and transformative change to address the intersecting crises of biodiversity loss and climate change,” she said, noting that achieving resilient and sustainable development can only be realized through concerted efforts and the sustained commitment of all.

In 2010, the DENR issued its Administrative Order No. 2010-16 which established the “Adopt-A-Wildlife Species Program” pursuant to the Republic Act No. 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act. This Order aims to ensure the perpetuity of threatened species, and protection of their habitats; promote biodiversity conservation and prevent species extinction through an active participation of stakeholders, and raise awareness on the countries’ threatened wildlife species, among others.

Moreover, the DENR and its partners in government, private sector, development partners and civil society groups are implementing programs to fulfill the country’s global commitments under the Global Biodiversity Framework, the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. These include USAID Philippines Sustainable Interventions for Biodiversity, Oceans, and Landscapes (SIBOL), Protect Wildlife Project, and collaboration with private sector organizations. This includes collaboration with Energy Development Corporation, Ayala Group, and Prime Infra on GHG and biodiversity inventories, climate disaster risk management programs, research, monitoring, reforestation, watershed area protection, and new remote sensing technologies, to name a few. #




The Philippines reaffirmed its commitment to building resilience especially among the most vulnerable, during the United Nations High-Level Meeting on the Midterm Review of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction in New York on May 18-20.
In its national statement delivered during the plenary meeting convened by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), the Philippines renewed its support for the Sendai Framework, which aims to substantially reduce disaster risk and losses in lives, livelihoods and health over the period 2015-2030. Secretary Antonia Loyzaga was designated by President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos, Jr. as Head of the Philippine Delegation.
Pursuant to the framework’s objectives, the Philippines committed to implement a comprehensive disaster risk management system that focuses on addressing the needs of all sectors, especially the socially vulnerable groups, amid the twin challenges of climate change and COVID-19.
The Loyzaga-led delegation said the Philippines recognizes the “intersectionality of vulnerability and how interdependencies require systemic solutions across sectors, scales, and geographies” in terms of disaster risk reduction.
The delegation stated how the climate crisis and the pandemic amplified pre-existing social vulnerabilities and overshadowed the country’s achievements in significantly reducing disaster-related mortalities, the number of affected populations, and direct economic losses to GDP prior to 2020.
It further pointed out that majority of all loss and damage between 2010 and 2020 were due to tropical cyclones alone, until COVID-19 came and reversed years of social progress and drove more than three million Filipinos back into poverty.
“These complexities drive our renewed commitment to comprehensive risk management—an all-hazards, whole-of-society nexus approach to climate and disaster governance that is capable of addressing even the needs of fragile, displaced and the most vulnerable communities,” the delegation said.
From 2015 to 2022, resilience strategies were mainstreamed through convergence budgeting and planning and investing in early warning systems, and by prioritizing resilience strategies in the Philippines’ development plans and sustainable finance roadmap.
“We enabled data-driven decision-making and open science through GIS (geographical information system) platforms such as Georisk Philippines and established the Philippine Space Agency,” the Philippine delegation reported.
  “Coupled with end-to-end multi-hazard early warning systems and impact-based forecasting, we are able to design new forms of social protection, set engineering standards, and pursue subnational risk financing,” it added.
The establishment of a national natural resources geospatial database, as well as the creation of a Water Resource Management Office and the National Virology Institute, are also seen to support the government’s effort towards a more effective disaster management and response system.
“We continue digital technologies for DRR, while leveraging transdisciplinary science, and local and indigenous knowledge for nature-based solutions,” the delegation said.
As it renewed its commitment to the Sendai Framework, the Philippines called for “effective integration of the framework with agreements on sustainable development goals or SDGs, climate change, biodiversity health, water, and the New Urban Agenda, among others, even as we work for greater access to the financial and technical resources needed to implement synergized programs.”
The Philippines extended the commitment towards a more comprehensive and robust disaster management and emergency response system in a related statement it delivered on behalf of the member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) during the high-level meeting.
ASEAN committed to achieve the targets of the Sendai Framework through: mainstreaming DRR within and across all sectors; focusing on communities and enhancing their capacities on disaster risk management and resilience-building efforts; and for further cooperation between regional and global mechanisms, such as the ASEAN-UN Joint Strategic Plan of Action on Disaster Management.
The New York meeting is seen as a fitting prelude to the Philippine hosting of the Asia-Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (APMCDRR) in October 2024.
  The Department of Environment and Natural Resources, in partnership with the Department of National Defense, will lead the country's hosting of the biennial APMCDRR, the world’s largest conference on DRR which serves as the main regional platform for promoting coordination, cooperation, and accelerating DRR strategies in the Asia-Pacific.
Convened by UNDRR, the APMCDRR brings together UN member states, intergovernmental organizations, international and national organizations, and stakeholder groups, to accelerate progress on DRR. #