On February 26, 2020, a quarry company started to encroach on Masungi’s assigned reforestation site. They put up barbed wires that will cut off reforestation work in some 500 hectares of degraded land around the georeserve (the equivalent of 11,450 basketball courts).
It is apparent that the quarry company’s intention is to drive the project team away and stop the reforestation project. Reports are rife that the quarry company will engage more men in uniform to forcibly continue its fencing activities.
On March 3, 2020, World Wildlife Day, DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu announced that the three quarrying permits totalling 1,500 hectares inside the Upper Marikina Protected Landscape and Masungi Wildlife Sanctuary shall be cancelled.
Today, March 23, 2022, no formal cancellation has been issued by the DENR. Two of these quarry operators, sister companies Rapid City and Quarry Rock, insist on quarrying the watershed and protected area.
Instead of removing the quarries and large-scale illegal occupants and swimming pool resorts, we know that there are concerted efforts from these vested and destructive interests and their backers to stop Masungi’s conservation efforts in and around the limestones.