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JICA-funded hanging bridge in Nueva Ecija inaugurated – DENR

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), in partnership with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), formally opened yesterday the 55-meter long Calaocan hanging bridge in Carranglan, Nueva Ecija.

Officials said the bring will be essential to the rehabilitation of the more than 44,000-hectare Pantabangan- Caranglan Watershed (PCW).

Paquito Moreno, Jr., executive director of DENR Central Luzon, said the bridge was funded by JICA as an Agroforestry Support Facility subproject in the 10-year Forest Land Management Project (FMP) in the Pantabangan-Carranglan watershed, according to a DENR statement.

The project will connect farm areas to market towns, reduce transport cost of agricultural products, minimize post-harvest losses and, above all ensure easier access to social services such as health and education.

“This 55-meter Calaocan hanging bridge, which traverses the Deguireg river, will be of great help not just in the conduct of developmental activities within the watershed, but will likewise be fundamental in uplifting the lives of the local communities as this will serve as a channel to increase local trade and productivity,” he said.

Moreno said the completion of the hanging bridge is one of the DENR’s strong commitments to uplift the socio-economic well-being of local communities while conserving and protecting the environment.

He also expressed his sincere appreciation to JICA for its generosity and “as a formidable ally in bringing significance to good governance towards social and environmental development.”

Launched in 2012, FMP has already rehabilitated 14, 133 hectares of denuded forest lands in PCW, and last year, it was able to construct a 3.7-kilometer farm-to-market road in Conversion village of Pantabangan town benefitting some 350 upland farmers and their families.