The Makiling Center for Mountain Ecosystems conducted a series of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) mentoring session with five local governments surrounding Mount Makiling. The mentoring sessions was conducted from July to August 2015. Participants from the local government include staff and officers from Assessor, Planning and Development, Disaster Risk Reduction and Management offices.
The mentoring session aims to extend technical assistance to LGUs following the activities of the Mt Makiling Ad hoc Inter-agency Buffer Zone Committee. The session specifically addresses the generation of spatial statistics and land use recommendations for the MMFR Buffer Zone leading to the creation of a land use plan for areas covered by the Mt Makiling Buffer Zone. Basic spatial overlay analyses were performed using available data for the area of interest.
After the mentoring sessions, each LGU was able to identify general and specific land use recommendations suitable for specific areas within the Buffer Zone. These land use recommendations will be transformed into policy recommendations which will form part of LGUs’ Zoning Ordinance for the MMFR Buffer Zone. The mentoring session is seen as part of the initial steps in effectively implementing Proclamation No.1257, Designating Certain Areas Surrounding the Makiling Forest Reserve as Buffer Zone and Prescribing Guidelines Thereof. As described in the proclamation, lands within the buffer zone are privately owned but should be managed and planned properly in order to protect the integrity of Mount Makiling Forest Reserve (MMFR) as well as to protect the well-being of the people depending on it.
The activity was facilitated by Foresters Leonardo D. Barua and Mae Belen C. Llanza, University Extension Specialist (UES) II and University Research Associate (URA) II, respectively. Each mentoring session was hosted by respective LGUs of Bay, Calauan, Calamba City, and Los Baños in Laguna and Sto. Tomas in Batangas