Messageboard Closed, Email Group Opened

Due to some problems with malwares and spams, I have to close the messageboard. There were more spammers in the forum than real people.

To the forum members who turned homeless because of my demolition job, I have created a yahoo group where we can continue our discussions. the group name is batangbalergroup. Go there and sign-in for membership. Here’s the long address:

To the ANSHS grads populating the alumni thread, please go to the Galing Ansci website and offer yourselves for adoption. To my batchmates using the Batch 88 thread, email me at batangbaler at gmail dot com for plan B.

For those looking for a quick fix, the Batangbaler Chatroom is just one click away.

Protests growing over Atienza OK of logging

Just when i thought i’m beginning to like the colorful shirts of DENR Secretary Lito Atienza because of his swift action against a reported case of illegal logging in Dingalan, Aurora (read the 3-day timeline here, here and here), then this report from

An information caravan in the nine villages of Dinalungan, Aurora, started to gather support on Monday for the protest against the approval by Environment Secretary Lito Atienza of a five-year logging plan by a firm in the province.

Fr. Ceferino Valenzuela, the town’s parish priest, said the caravan mounted by the Concerned Citizens of Dinalungan started at 8 a.m., holding short programs in every village it passed.

The 200 participants were expected to reach the logging areas of Industries Development Corp. (IDC) in Barangays Ditawini and Abuleg in Dinalungan, Dinadiawan in Dipaculao town, and at the Aurora-Quirino boundary before dusk.

Click here to read the full news.

Look at the Google Earth picture of Dinalungan here:

The town is already a big landslide viewed from space. This is not caused by just the “illegal” loggers. The environmental catastrophes happening in Aurora are mostly caused by legal loggers. Sec. Atienza should take this in consideration before approving any logging permit. Because, to parapharase his own quote, “To allow ANY KIND OF LOGGING to continue is like begging for a catastrophe with epic proportions to happen.”

Lest we forget, Tonette Orejas from Inquirer added this sidenote on the report:

What went before

By Tonette Orejas
Central Luzon Desk
First Posted 00:27:00 04/30/2008

MANILA, Philippines – Landslides triggered by rains from Typhoons “Winnie” and “Yoyong” killed more than 300 people in Dingalan, Aurora in November and December 2005. Nearly 1,000 houses were destroyed.

On Dec. 30, 2005, 70 families were marooned in Barangay Esperanza in Casiguran as floodwaters reached 10 feet high. All 24 villages in the town were flooded.

Mayor Reynaldo Bitong said the floods, the worst in Casiguran after Typhoon “Harurot’s” rains in July 2003, came as the Amro, Minanga, Dibet, Bianoan and Calabgan rivers overflowed.

On July 31, 2006, the Provincial Disaster Coordinating Council said 57 villages in the towns of Baler, Casiguran, Dilasag, Dinalungan, Dipaculao, Maria Aurora and San Luis were at high risk to floods and landslides on the heels of Typhoon “Henry.”

I’m glad to hear that Dinalungan Mayor Tito Tubigan listens to his constituents and opposes logging in his turf. Let’s hope it’s not just lip service.

For more info about the environment in Aurora click here.