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DoST-Cordillera targets mountain preservation, water security

BAGUIO CITY — The Department of Science and Technology (DoST)-Cordillera is seeking the preservation of the region’s mountains amidst natural disasters and urbanization through innovative engineering solutions and to ensure water security and climate resiliency for the mountain communities in the Cordilleras.

The agency launched its two research and development programs aimed to ensure the protection and preservation of the environment.

The first program — “Program Boondock: A Mountain Engineering Center Towards Sustainable Infrastructure and Upland Water Security” — is a collaborative effort of the DoST-Cordillera with the University of the Cordilleras, Kalinga State University, Saint Louis University and the Watershed and Water Resources Research, Development and Extension Center of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (DENR-ERDB).

It targets to enhance the industrial competitiveness of the Cordilleras in the field of agriculture, tourism and mobility through mountain engineering solutions and promote social and human development through upland water security, and environmental sustainability.

The program — funded by the DoST Science for Change Program (S4CP) Niche Centers in the Regions (NICER) for research and — is also expected to have an estimated P1-billion savings in infrastructure damage due to landslides and extreme flooding in a span of three to five years while also safeguarding lives.

The R&D center will have a total funding of P62 million and will target to increase agriculture production by 20 percent to provide sustainable water resources management solutions.

Since 2017, 35 NICER Centers have been established in 17 regions across the country, amounting to P1.7 billion devoted to support the country’s R&D initiatives.

Meantime, the other program dubbed “Ensuring Water Security and Climate-Resilience for Mountain Indigenous Communities of the Cordillera through

Technology-enhanced Decision Support Tools” is expected to bring about sufficient, clean and safe domestic water supply in mountain communities especially during the dry season.

The program is a partnership of DoST-CAR with the Mountain Province State Polytechnic College and University of the Cordilleras and funded by the DoST-National Research Council of the Philippines.

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