DENR and G.Lo’s prohibitionism tempered by Cimatu

A good development at the DENR, new Secretary Roy Cimatu has suspended an Admin Order (AO) issued by ex-Sec. G.Lopez.


“Environment Secretary  Roy Cimatu has “suspended indefinitely” an administrative order issued by his predecessor which required the environment chief’s approval of environmental compliance certificates (ECCs) of projects critical to the environment.

In a new administrative order dated July 3, Cimatu said he was suspending Gina Lopez’s February 15 order “in the interest of service and in order to expedite the issuance of the [ECC] in the regional level consistent with the directive of the President to fast-track issuance of government permits and licenses.”

Lopez’s DENR Administrative Order (DAO) 2017-04 gave the DENR secretary the sole authority to issue ECCs for both environmentally critical projects (ECPs), and non-ECPs within environmentally critical areas (ECAs).

Under this DAO, the secretary decides on the issuance or non-issuance of ECCs upon the recommendation of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) director with the concurrence of the undersecretary for legal affairs.

Following the suspension of the administrative order, the approving authority for ECPs is back with the DENR secretary and/or the EMB director, while the approving authority for non-ECPs within ECAs has been given back to the EMB director and/or the EMB regional directors.”

This further shows how ego-tripper the CA-ousted ex-Sec. Lopez was. Prohibit this, ban that, bureaucratize there was her mantra. It is good that Sec. Cimatu has tempered this prohibitionism culture at the DENR.

More bans, more prohibitions by governments actually create adverse results. Like the bans and prohibitions of gambling, drugs, prostitution, free-traded goods, these things proliferate, which implies that there is large-scale corruption almost anywhere that allows these things and services.

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