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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Update on Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident in Japan




INFORMATION BULLETIN № 14
28 March 2011
Update as of 10:00 AM


* The DOST-PNRI continues to closely monitor the situation at the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.
* The condition in the plant remains very serious but not worsening.
* Extremely high levels of radiation (10 million times normal) appeared to be a reporting error and had been retracted by Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO). Nevertheless, high levels of radiation remain inside the nuclear power plant but pose danger only to the emergency workers.
* Environmental radiation monitoring all over the world including the Philippines has detected very tiny amounts of radioactive isotopes which appeared to be coming from the Fukushima nuclear power plant and which pose no human health hazards.
* Latest DOST-PNRI RADIATION LEVEL CHECK at PNRI grounds as of 9:00 AM, March 28, 2011: 93-115 nSv/hr (nanoSieverts per hour), STATUS: NORMAL
* Based on the PAGASA model, air parcel coming from northern Japan is forecasted to move east towards the Pacific Ocean for the next three days.
* For the latest information, please access the following websites:
o International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) (http://www.iaea.org)
o Nuclear and Industrial Safety Administration (NISA) of Japan (www.nisa.meti.go.jp/english/index.html)
o World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/hac/crises/jpn/en/index.html)

* For further advisories, please call the PNRI trunklines with Tel Nos. 929-6010 to 19 or visit the following:
o DOST (www.dost.gov.ph)
o PNRI (www.pnri.dost.gov.ph)
o STII (www.stii.dost.gov.ph)

DENR inks agreement with Skyway for Maricaban creek clean up





The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has found another ally in the private sector in rehabilitating critical waterbodies in Metro Manila – the Skyway Operations and Maintenance Corp. (SOMCO).

            “This time it’s the Maricaban creek situated at the boundaries of Taguig City and ParaƱaque that will be benefit from this clean up partnership between the DENR and SOMCO,” Environment Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje said, representing the agency in the partnership.

            SOMCO president and chief executive officer Ramon M. Borromeo signed the agreement with Paje, with Eduardo F. Nepomuceno, head of SOMCO’s Special Operations and Projects and External Affairs; Environmental Management Bureau Director Juan Miguel Cuna and Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) General Manager Rodrigo Cabrera as witnesses. 

            The agreement signing, held as one of the highlights in the recent celebration of World Water Day at the SM Mall of Asia In Pasay City, was in consonance with the DENR’s “Adopt-an-Estero-Program” which seeks to improve the environmental quality of rivers, creeks and other tributaries in the country through a public-private partnership platform.

“Most of the water bodies in Metro Manila can no longer be restored by government alone. To sustain our efforts, we need to work with the private sector, the local government and other stakeholders to address the huge volume of silt, wastes and other debris that have contlributed to the continuing degradation of our waterways. With SOMCO’s support and the active participation of the communities within the vicinity, we are assured of the sustainability of the clean up efforts, which the ultimate beneficiaries would be the next generations,” Paje stressed.

Under the MOA, SOMCO will undertake environmental improvement on a 2.6-kilometer stretch of Maricaban Creek traversing the cities of Taguig, Makati, Pasay and ParaƱaque. The company is also tasked to conduct dredging, information and education campaigns, community mobilization activities, and training programs for concerned stakeholders.

For its part, the DENR through its EMB-National Capital Region and the LLDA will intensify monitoring of industrial/commercial establishments, and undertake, among others, regular water quality monitoring. It will also provide the necessary technical assistance to concerned leaders and stakeholder groups in the area.


The concerned parties also agreed to determine the necessity of, and to the extent possible plan for, more dredging and desilting of the creek, introduction of interventions such as phyto-remediation thru constructed wetlands, planting of bamboo and other plant species along the river banks, rip-rapping or coco-matting, construction, and greening of linear parks.

Also present during the agreement signing were EMB Asst. Director Gilbert C. Gonzales, EMB-National Capital Region Director Roberto Sheen, DENR-NCR Regional Executive Director Laureano B. Lingan, Jr., and Laguna Lake Development Authority General Manager Rodrigo E. Cabrera.

SOMCO is the 5th company within Metro Manila that signified its commitment to join the program. The first was Manila North Tollways Corporation for portions of the Tullahan River at Barangays Ugong in Valenzuela City and Talipapa in Quezon City; followed by the Philippine Mine Safety and Environment Association for Diliman Creek and its minor tributaries; San Miguel Corporation for portions of Tullahan River from MacArthur Highway all the way to Manila Bay; and AMKOR Technology Philippines Inc. for Palico Creek located at Brgys. Buli and Cupang in Muntinlupa City. -30- DENR, PAO

Paje mandates clean up of units in DENR central office





Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje has trained his eyes on central office personnel to clean up as he launched the DENR’s internal contest “Search and Recognition of Environment-friendly and Clean Offices” this month.

            “All DENR offices nationwide have long been undertaking ecological waste management like waste segregation and recycling, and energy and water conservation  as part of our mandate.  However, this is the first time that we are going to give rewards to offices in the central office that have consistently been taking good environmental practices as an incentive,” Paje said.

            According to Paje, the move is not only to boost productivity but also to promote the well-being of the personnel.

            “The incentive that the monitoring group would come up with, will somehow be something that our people will be looking forward to, but the objective of the search program is primarily to boost our people’s productivity as we believe that a clean and well-organized work environment reduces stress and makes people happy and productive,”  explained Paje.
            In Memorandum Circular No. 2011-02, Paje designated Undersecretary Manuel D. Gerochi to head the Cleanliness and Orderliness Group (COG) which shall be responsible for monitoring the implementation of the program.  DENR Assistant Secretary Corazon Davis shall serve as the group’s vice-chairman, with two representatives from the employees’ union, Katipunan ng mga Kawani ng Kalikasan as members, along with Directors Ramon Ezpeleta, Adeluisa Siapno and Ric Enriquez.
            Under the directive, the group is authorized to conduct surprise inspections of the offices.
            Among the criteria set for the contest include adherence to the principles of good housekeeping (40%), ecological waste management/environmental management system (40%), and records and materials disposal (10%).
Paje said there will be three winners, each of which will receive cash prizes.  He, however, refused to say how much the cash prizes would be as the COG has yet to discuss it.  Awarding of winners is slated in June in time for the celebration of Environment Month. -30- DENR, PAO

Paje fortifies anti-corruption program in DENR





Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon J. P. Paje has designated a senior official to head the Internal Audit and Anti-Corruption Office in a move to fortify the anti-corruption program in the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

            In DENR Special Order No. 2011-177 issued on March 3, 2011, Paje named Assistant Secretary Daniel M. Nicer, a lawyer, to directly supervise the Internal Audit Service (IAS) of the agency, as well as exercise supervision and control over the Personnel Investigation Division of the Legal Service, and the Special Action and Investigation Division.

            This, despite an earlier announcement by the Pulse Asia, which found the DENR to have made an impressive leap to 4th place, from 8th in 1999, in the rooster of top10 agencies considered as “least corrupt”.  The Pulse Asia Survey was conducted from February 24-March 6 this year.

            “That the DENR is the only regulatory agency to have made it to the Top 4 of the least corrupt agencies comes as a solid affirmation that an appreciably degree of effectiveness must have gone into our house-cleaning efforts, thereby earning the kind of respect we are beginning to enjoy among our kababayan,” Paje said, noting that all the first three placers were service-oriented agencies led by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Health (DOH), and the Department of Education (DepEd).

            While saying that a strong headstart has been made in key areas of the DENR’s operations, particularly in the central office, Paje recognized that removing the conditions for graft in the field offices where majority of its 25,000-strong workforce are stationed, as the “most defining benchmark”.

            Among the policy reforms which Paje instituted since his assumption of the DENR leadership last July include the donation of confiscated forest products to the Department of Education instead of the putting these under public auction.

            “It has been the practice before that once the apprehended logs, lumber or other forest products have been confiscated in favor of the government, these were turned over to the Natural Resources Development Corp. (NRDC) for public auction.  The unfortunate thing here is that anybody can join the public auction, including those suspected of having a hand in the illegal logging activities,” Paje explained.

            This situation, said Paje, is now being addressed with the recent directive of President Benigno S. Aquino III for the DENR to give priority to DepEd in the donation of the confiscated forest products, and the signing last week of a memorandum of agreement by the DENR with DepEd, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and PAGCOR, for the conversion of the donated forest products into desks, armchairs, cabinets and other school furniture.

            Paje likewise instituted a drastic reform measure in the mining sector by ordering the cleansing of pending mining applications in the Mines and Geo-sciences Bureau (MGB) and its regional offices nationwide.  Also up for final action by the agency are exploration contracts that have already expired for five years or more and mining contracts whose three-year program have not been implemented for two consecutive years.

            Other anti-corruption measures in place in the DENR include the installation of close-circuit television cameras, posting of process flow charts in strategic places, adoption of the DENR Citizen’s Charter and the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards, all of which were also published in all websites of the department’s bureaus and regional offices.

            Despite the positive survey findings, Paje urged his officials and subordinates not to be complacent.  He said, “The score should continue to remind us that we are far from winning the fight against corruption.  Yes, we may have made some gains but corruption remains an enormous drain on the country’s resources which can better be used for improved social services.”

            Other tasks assigned to Nicer include the conduct of investigations involving corruption by officials and personnel and the filing of appropriate cases in the proper forum, conduct and supervision of training and seminars for administrative reforms and anti-corruption, monitoring of specific anti-corruption programs and projects of the Department, and the updating and enhancement of all anti-corruption instruments and activities of the DENR. -30- DENR, PAO

“WORLD TB DAY 2011” INILUNSAD SA BRGY. PAYATAS



Nasa larawan si Barangay Chairwoman Rose Dadulo (panlima mula sa kanan)matapos ipagdiwang ang World TB Day sa Barangay Payatas, Lungsod Quezon kamakailan, ang  nasabing programa ay  may temang “Ako Ang Susugpo sa TB”, kasama   ang mga kagawad at mga panauhin na sina, DR. Irma Asuncion, Regional Director, CHD, NCR, DOH; Dr. Antonieta Inumirable, Cty Health OFFICER III, Quezon City Health Department’ Dr. Shoko Ogawa, Second Secretary, Health Attache, Economic Section, Embasy of Japan.(RAFFY RICO/JIMMY CAMBA)



PINANGUNAHAN ni Chairwoman Rose Dadulo ang pagdiriwang ng “World TB Day 2011”kamakailan, kasama ang mga kagawad, Staff at mga kabarangay.Ang nasabing programa ay may temang “Ako Ang Susugpo sa TB” at ito ay ginanap mismo sa Covered Court tabi ng Barangay Hall, Area-B Barangay Payatas Quezon City.

Naging panauhin sa nasabing okasyon sina, Dr. Irma Asuncion, Regional Director CHD, NCR, DOH; Dr. Antonieta Inumirable, Cty Health OFFICER III, Quezon City Health Department’ Dr. Shoko Ogawa, Second Secretary, Health Attache, Economic Section, Embasy of Japan. Dinaluhan din ito ng ibat-ibang sector sa National Capital Region(NCR).

Kasabay sa pagdiriwang ng World TB Day 2011, nagakaroon naman feeding program ang Agrarian Reform Middle Management Association Inc.,ng DAR, sa pangunguna ni  Violeta M. Bonilla, President, ARMMA.
Sa magkaparehong araw ginanap din ang Barangay Assembly, kasabay sa Inauguration ng Brgy. Library na matatagpuan sa ikatlong palapag ng Brgy. Hall  at ang MOA Signing ng St. as DOTS Facility.(RAFFY RICO)


QC COMMUTERS ASSURED OF FREE RIDES





The Quezon City government, on orders of Mayor Herbert Bautista, has fielded two city-owned and eight privately-operated buses to provide free rides to commuters who will be affected by the transport strike organized by militant drivers and operators of public utility vehicles.     

Aside from the buses, 142 yellow multi-cabs maintained by the city government were pooled for deployment to jeepney and bus routes affected by the strike.                 

The QC department of public order and safety, headed by Elmo San Diego, has mobilized additional traffic enforcers to complement traffic personnel of the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the QC Police District Traffic Management Unit in an effort to lessen the effect of the strike on peace and order and traffic flow, especially around the QC Memorial Circle, where militant transport leaders assembled at around 10 a.m.   

Meanwhile, the QC Police District has fielded a six by six truck to augment the number of transport vehicles deployed by the city government.    

Militant transport group PISTON earlier declared its plan to stage the caravan to protest the continued increase in oil prices. -30- Precy/Ramir/Maureen Quinones, PAISO

OWWA SCHOLAR GRADUATED WITH FLYING COLORS





Four years ago, the grandmother of Raymond Burgess applied his grandson for the Education for Development Scholarships Program (EDSP) of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration while her daughter works abroad as a household service worker. Now, Raymond is about to start a career with a top IT company in the country after graduating Cum Laude from the University of Santo Tomas with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Information Technology. Raymond is just among the many OWWA scholars who graduated with flying colors.

This was reported by OWWA Administrator Carmelita S. Dimzon to Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz of the Department of Labor and Employment who has directed the promotion of Education and Training Benefits for Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and their families.

“As the lead government agency tasked to promote the welfare and well-being of OFWs and their dependents, we congratulate Raymond and all our graduating scholars who make their parents proud as they work for their children’s future abroad”, said Administrator Dimzon.

Raymond who just graduated last March 26, 2011 is now working as a Technology Consultant in Hewlett Packard. He is the son of Jesusa Pantinople who works as a household service worker in the Cayman Islands.

“I thank OWWA for the scholarship that helped me finish college and also my mom who will always be my inspiration as I strive to reciprocate her sacrifices abroad to bring me where I am now”, said Raymond.

EDSP scholars of four-to-five-year baccalaureate courses are given a maximum of P60, 000 per year. Aside from EDSP, OWWA scholarships for OFW dependents include the Skills-for-Employment Scholarship Program for vocational or technical courses; OFW Dependents Scholarship Program (ODSP) for needy but deserving students and the Congressional Migrant Workers Scholarship Program.

Like Raymond, other OWWA graduates came from prestigious schools like UP, Ateneo, La Salle, UST, FEU, Mapua, Western Mindanao University and Siliman University to name a few.

“We, at OWWA, will remain committed to support our OFWs in their dream to provide the best education to their children”, added Administrator Dimzon.-30- Rey D. Tayag, OIC, ASMD, OWWA

DOST brings efficient drinking water filter technology to NHA resettlement community




Venancio G. Dumayo shells out P35 for drinking water every three days or less. The cost dams up in a month, bursting a hole in the six-member family’s marginal income. But like the hundreds of families that make up the new Southville 3 community, Dumayo apparently had little choice.

Southville 3 is a community of former settlers along the perilous tracks of the Philippine National Railways traversing the fast developing Muntinlupa City to the Southern Luzon provinces.

The National Housing Authority has built the austere community with 7,000 row housing units in Muntinlupa’s hilly inner borough, just south of the ill-famed national penitentiary.

But today [March 31], hope dripped down Dumayo and 499 other families who received “ceramic pot water filter” units developed by scientists at the Industrial Technology Development Institute, an agency of the Department of Science and Technology.

They will be the first to use the clay based water filter units as part of pilot testing agreement between DOST-ITDI and the NHA.

The ITDI water filter is made of red clay coated with nano-colloidal silver, an anti-microbial agent that is more efficient than the “chlorination process in traditional water filter system”, ITDI explained. The pot-shaped filter is placed on top of a plastic container that holds the filtered water.

This simple science tested solution can “reduce e coli count to less than 1 percent”, DOST Secretary Mario G. Montejo told Southville 3 residents following the signing of a memorandum of agreement on the project with NHA General Manager Chito M. Cruz.

Montejo reminded Dumayo and other recipients of the water filter units that their feedback is important for possible performance improvement of the units after the pilot test.

But Dumayo is already buoyed by the “big savings that I can squeeze” from using the ITDI water filter.

ITDI Director Nuna Almanzor said that cost per unit was considered in the development of the water filter. The development team came out with a filter system that’s “easy to make, portable, inexpensive, user friendly, and made of local clay that passed the required physical properties of ceramic pot filters”.

Moreover, the ITDI water filter has “passed the Philippine National Standards for drinking water in terms of microbiological and chemical analysis”.

It is capable to purify tap water, deep well water, and raw water tainted with up to 3 percent suspended particles or silt and convert these into safe drinking water”, the ITDI said in a statement.

Under the MOA, experts from DOST-ITDI will provide technical assistance to the NHA and the beneficiaries starting from installation to performance monitoring of the water filters.

            “Access to potable water is one of the major development concerns of President Aquino. What we brought here today is a practical solution to that concern. We really hope that we can roll this out to other communities nationwide”, Montejo added. [S&T Media Service]


Q.C. Treasurer Villanueva Walang Sikreto





Walang sikreto! Walang trade of secret, yan ang pahayag ni Quezon City Treasurer Edgar T. Villanueva matapos ma-interview nina Raffy Rico ng Manila Star, Cathy Cruz ng DWAD, at ni Jimmy Camba ng Manila Star (photog.).

Ayon kay City Treasurer Villanueva, very financially stable at very healthy ang kalagayan ng pananalapi sa kabang yaman ng lungsod Quezon, na umaabot sa halagang ₱ 6.9 bilyon na- cash in hand at cash in bank, ito umano ang nalikom na pera ng City Treasurers Office, isang araw bago matapos ang quarterly deadline ngayong taon.

Ang sikreto, matiyaga umano silang mangolekta at mayroon silang mga Good Bosses, na sina Mayor Herbert “Bistek” Bautista, City Administrator, at ang Sangguniang panlungsod at meyembro na laging nakaagapay sa kanilang pangongolekta ng buwis.

Nilinaw pa ni City Treasurer Villanueva na ang tatlo (3) nilang sikreto ay mayroon silang Good Chief Executive, Very Cooperative Legislative Body at Good Tax Collector represented by the City Treasurer.

Inamin din ng opisyal na hindi lang niya napantayan ang dating mataas na koleksiyon ng dating City Treasurer na si Victor Endriga kundi nalagpasan pa niya ang record sa kapanahunan nito, dahil 1st quarter pa lamang umano ng taon sa ngayon, halos mahigit kalahati na ang koleksiyon, kumpara sa kapanahunan ng dating Tresurero.

Samantala, binanggit din ni City Treasurer Ed Villanueva na sinuspinde nya ang pagbibigay ng sertipikasyon sa mga negosyanteng nakinabang sa tinatawag na BMBE Law dahil naging kapansin-pansin ang pag-aabuso ng ilang mga mamumuhunan sa lungsod.

Malaki umano ang naging epekto ng 50% bawas sa pagbabayad ng buwis sa lokal na pamahalaan gayudin sa BIR. Dagdag pa ni Villanueva mula Enero hanggang sa kasalukuyan ay tatlo (3) pa lamang ang mapalad na nakapasang negosyante sa Lungsod Quezon na dati nang nakinabang ng BMBE Law.

Nanawagan din si Villanueva na huwag naman sanang abusuhin ng ating mga kababayang negosyante sa lungsod ang mga pribilihiyong ipinagkakaloob ng pamahalaan.(RAFFY RICO/JIMMY CAMBA)



Stunted, underweight children on the rise





Undertaking researches that define the population’s nutritional status with reference to malnutrition and nutrition-related diseases, and their causes is one of the legal bases the Food and Nutrition Research Institute – Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) is conducting nutrition surveys regularly.

In 2008, the 7th National Nutrition Survey (NNS) showed significant increases in the prevalence of stunting and underweight children 0-5 and 6-10 years old from 2005 to 2008.

“In 2008, in every one hundred 0-5 year-old pre-school children, 26 were underweight, about 28 were stunted and six were thin using the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS),” according to Dr. Jocelyn A. Juguan of the FNRI-DOST during her lecture on “The 7th National Nutrition Survey: Highlights on the Nutritional Status of Infants” at the Philippine Women’s University’s (PWU) Nutrition Month celebration on July 21, 2010.

“In every one hundred 6-10 year-old children, about 26 were underweight and about 33 were stunted,” Dr. Juguan added.

Dr. Juguan also revealed that the highest prevalence of anemia at 55.7 percent was observed among infants, 6 months to less than one year old, which remains a significant public health problem.

However, survey results showed that anemia prevalence generally in 2008 declined from 2003 among children 6 months to 12 years old.

“About 1.91 million or 15.2 percent children had vitamin A deficiency (VAD),” Dr. Juguan said. “There is a significant drop in the prevalence of vitamin A deficiency from 40.1 percent in 2003 to 15.2 percent in 2008 among children 6 months to five years,” she further added.

The role of mothers in complementary feeding is important in providing the necessary nutrients for the growing infant, 6 months and older.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), complementary feeding is the gradual shift from breastmilk to solid foods and giving other foods in addition to breastmilk, typically covers the period from 6 to 18-24 months of age, and is a very vulnerable period.

It is important to feed children 6 months onwards with enough sources of iron, zinc and B vitamins with continuing breastfeeding up to 2 years and beyond when possible in a timely, accurate, and appropriate manner.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num:  8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service: Press Release  JUND RIAN A. DORINGO)

Calcium is the least consumed micronutrient in the Filipino diet





Ninety-nine percent of calcium is located in the skeleton for bone structure and strength, while one percent is found in the soft tissues, extracellular fluid and plasma for metabolic and regulatory roles.

Specifically, calcium is consumed for the construction, formation and maintenance of bones and teeth, blood clotting and wound healing, muscle contraction, maintenance of cells and connective tissues, blood pressure control and nerve transmission, among others.

According to the Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI) developed by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2002, calcium requirement differs according to population groups and sex.

The male and female adults 19 – 64 years old need 750 milligrams (mg) per day of calcium, while those 65 years old and over need 800mg/day.

The Philippines has relatively lower recommendation values for calcium than the United States, Australia and other Southeast Asian countries.

Dried dilis, canned fish, sardines, some green vegetables and legumes, seeds and nuts, snails and mollusks are the richest sources of calcium in the diet, while milk, yogurt and cheddar cheese have the highest absorbable calcium.

Dr. Rodolfo F. Florentino, Chairman-President of the Nutrition Foundation of the Philippines (NFP) discussed the results of the FNRI’s 7th National Nutrition Survey (NNS) by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST), particularly the calcium intake of Filipinos at the 12th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Osteoporosis Society of the Philippines Foundation, Inc on October 22, 2010.

The survey assessed the current food consumption situation and energy and nutrient intake of Filipino households and determined the current food and nutrient intakes of Filipinos across population groups.

Results of the household food consumption survey showed that mean one-day per capita calcium intake is at 42.3 percent (%) of the RENI – showing calcium as the least- consumed nutrient in the Filipino diet.
There was a drop in the proportion of households meeting the RENI for calcium from 16.0% in 2003 to 11.5% in 2008.

“According to the result of the 7th NNS, the six to twelve year-old children had the lowest consumption of calcium according to population groups, with 0.26 grams per day,” Dr. Florentino said.

Pregnant women had the highest mean one-day calcium consumption among population groups.

In general, the estimated average recommendation for calcium was not met and registered very low proportions across population groups at around 9.8%.
Fish was shown to be the primary source of calcium in the Filipino diet, followed by rice and cereals, vegetables and milk and milk products.

Dr. Florentino also pointed out that milk intake, as an excellent source of dietary calcium, was poor except in infants.

Calcium intake can be increased through increased consumption of fish and milk in the diet, as well as promoting cheaper sources of calcium.

Promotion of adequate calcium intake throughout the lifespan is strongly encouraged to meet the recommended intakes especially in infants after six months.
Everyone must take part in improving the calcium intake, particularly during the growing years to avoid calcium deficiency-related diseases such as osteoporosis.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num:  8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service: Press Release  JUND RIAN A. DORINGO)

Fruits not common in the Pinoy diet





Did you know that Filipinos are eating less fruits over the years?

This was revealed in the food consumption survey (FCS) conducted in 2008 by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) which showed that fruit consumption has decreased over the past 20 years from an individual intake of 107 grams in 1987 to only 54 grams in 2008.

The survey also revealed that individual fruit intake did not change from 2003 to 2008 at 54 grams.

The amount of 54 grams is about one serving-size banana latundan that contributes about 6.3 percent of the average individual food intake for 2008.

This consumption level is lower than the recommended intake of 2-3 servings of fruits daily.

No wonder that no fruit was included in the list of most commonly-consumed foods of Filipinos in 2008.

Fruits are rich sources of nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C and fiber.
Vitamin A is needed for normal vision, promotes growth and boosts immune resistance, while vitamin C increases the body's resistance to infection, helps keep gums and teeth healthy and acts as antioxidant, among others.

Fiber provides bulk, aids in normal bowel movement, helps in the management of diabetes, lowers cholesterol and may help prevent certain cancers.


However, based on the FCS, Filipinos get most of these nutrients from other food groups, particularly meat, fish and poultry for vitamin A and vegetables for vitamin C and fiber.

The low intake of fruits calls for a more aggressive promotion of fruit consumption and a closer look at the reasons why fruits are not common in the Filipino dining table, including their affordability and availability, as well as the Filipino's attitude towards eating fruits.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num:  8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service: Press Release  CHARINA A. JAVIER)

Only 3 in 10 households meet the needed energy from food





The food consumption survey (FCS) conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2008 showed that only 33.1 percent or 3 in every 10 Filipino households meet the recommended energy intake, and less than 20 percent meet the estimated average requirement (EAR) for iron, calcium and riboflavin.

The survey revealed that in 2008, the daily individual food intake was 861 grams, lower than the 886 grams in 2003 and in the first FCS in 1978 which was 897 grams.

In terms of caloric intake, the individual total food consumption decreased to 1867 kilocalories in 2008 from 1905 kilocalories in 2003.
Likewise, the proportion of households meeting energy adequacy in 2008 decreased compared to 2003.

Moreover, the trend showed that over the years, food intake has been lower in quantity but more calorie-dense.
Rice is the most commonly-consumed food, followed by sugar, coconut oil, coarse salt, instant coffee, garlic, onion, chicken eggs, breads including pandesal, soy sauce and tomato.

A significant increase in per capita consumption among household of rice and rice products from 303 grams in 2003 to 317 grams in 2008 was observed.
This increase in rice consumption is in contrast with the other energy-giving foods like sugar and syrups, and fats and oils which have significant decreases.
For body-building foods, there were observed increases from 2003 to 2008 in the consumption of eggs, fish and products, and poultry, while consumption of meat and products, milk and its products, as well as dried beans, nuts and seeds decreased, although, not statistically significant. 

For the regulating foods, individual vegetable consumption of 111 grams in 2003 slightly decreased to 110 grams in 2008, while fruit intake remained unchanged.

Bulk of the energy, protein and iron intakes come from cereals and cereal products where rice belonged, while intake of vitamin A comes mainly from fish, meat and poultry.

The FCS is a component of the 7th National Nutrition Survey conducted every five years to assess the current intake and nutritional status of Filipinos and analyze the trends over the years.

The survey showed that 66.9 percent of households are energy deficient in 2008.

Tracking down the Philippines' achievement of the first Millennium Development Goal (MDG) which is to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, means that to reduce by half the proportion of households who are energy deficient in 1993 with 74.2 percent to 34.1 percent in 2015 would mean a 5 percentage point reduction per year starting in 2008.

The challenge is to ensure food security in the household especially during this time when the prices and supply of the most commonly-consumed foods of Filipinos are fluctuating.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num:  8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service: Press Release CHARINA A. JAVIER)

Calcium intake of Filipinos still low – FNRI Survey





The latest nutrition survey conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST) in 2008 noted that the calcium intakes of Filipinos are inadequate.

A nearly 90 percent of Filipino households is not meeting the average requirements for calcium. Thus, only one in every 10 Filipino households meets the average requirement for calcium. The consumption of Filipinos for milk and milk products decreased by seven grams, from 49 grams per capita per day in 2003 to 42 grams per capita per day in 2008.

The most important dietary sources of calcium are milk and milk products. Milk and milk products contain highly absorbable calcium and are also good sources of other vital nutritional elements including high quality protein for building and repairing of body tissues, and vitamin A for better eyesight and healthy skin. Dairy products are also rich in riboflavin for the normal functioning of the nervous system, cobalamin or vitamin B12 for maturation of red blood cells and even phosphorus for proper bones and teeth development.

Aside from milk and milk products, there are other sources of calcium like fish, especially the small ones eaten with bones like dilis and sardines, small shrimps or alamang, soy bean curd or tofu and tokwa, and green leafy vegetables like malunggay leaves, saluyot, alugbati and mustasa.

One should include milk and milk products and other calcium-rich foods like small fish and green leafy vegetables in the daily diet to meet the requirement for calcium. 

Non-milk drinkers may add milk to casseroles, cheese sauces, fruit shakes, dips, puddings, mashed potato, and halo-halo to get considerable benefits from milk as well.

For more information on food and nutrition, contact:  Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Tel/Fax Num:  8372934 and 8373164; email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph, mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service: Press Release  MA. IDELIA G. GLORIOSO)

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

QC TREASURER EDGARDO VILLANUEVA NAGPAALALA SA DEADLINE NG PAGBABAYAD NG REAL PROPERTY TAX





IBIG paalalahanan ni Quezon City Treasurer Edgardo Villanueva ang mga ‘taxpayer’ sa Lungsod Quezon na ‘deadline’ na ng pagbabayad bukas Marso 31, 2011 ng “Real Property Tax” upang maiwasan umano ang karagdagang pagbabayad o pagpapataw ng dagdag na 
interes at ‘penalty’ ng mga residente ng nasabing lungsod.

Sa ating panayam kay Treasurer Villanueva na di tulad ng ‘business tax’ na ‘flexible’  umano ito depende sa nakikitang resulta ng bilang ng mga nagsisipagbayad ng ‘business tax’ kung saan ay puwede nya itong irekomenda at hilingin sa lokal na konseho na magpasa ng ordinansa upang magbigay ng ‘extension’ sa mga negosyante upang magkaroon ng pagkakataong makapagbayad ng kanilang buwis ng kani-kanilang negosyo. Di tulad umano ng ‘Real Property Tax’ na ang tanging puwedeng maging dahilan aniya na magbigay ng ‘extension’ ay kung may ‘national emergency o calamity’ na deklarado ng Pangulo ng bansa.

Samantala, binanggit din ni City Treasurer Ed Villanueva na sinuspinde nya ang pagbibigay ng sertipikasyon sa mga negosyanteng makinabang sa tinatawag na BMBE Law dahil naging kapansin-pansin ang pag-abuso ng ilang mga negosyante sa lungsod.

Malaki umano ang nagiging epekto ng 5% bawas sa pagbabayad ng buwis sa lokal na pamahalaan gayudin sa BIR. Dagdag pa ni Villanueva na buhat nitong enero hanggang sa kasalukuyan ay tatlo (3) pa lamang ang mapalad na nakapasa sa maraming negosyante sa Lungsod Quezon na dati-rating nakinabang ng BMBE Law.

Panawagan nga ni Villanueva na huwag naman abusuhin ng ating mga kababayang negosyante sa lungsod ang mga pribilihiyong ipinagkakaloob ng pamahalaan. 

2 SCHOOLS ORDERED CLOSED FOR FIRE CODE VIOLATIONS





Two private schools in Quezon City are to be closed for their continuing failure to comply with the Fire Code of the Philippines despite several warnings issued by the city’s fire department.

During a regular meeting of the Quezon City peace and order council (QCPOC), Mayor Herbert M. Bautista ordered the city’s Bureau of Fire And Protection (BFP) District fire marshall Sr. Supt. Bobby Baruelo to immediately stop the operation of Claret  School, an exclusive school for boys,  located at Mahinhin St. U.P. Village, and  Blue Ridge Christian Academy located at Boni Serrano Road, Murphy, Cubao.

The order came after Baruelo updated the Mayor on the list of business establishments in the city that did not comply with the Fire Code of the Philippines based on routine inspections conducted by the fire department as early as the mid-months of 2010.

Baruelo had informed Mayor Bautista that the two private schools were given notice to comply as early as when their first violation was noted by fire inspectors. However, despite several warnings, violations continued until the last inspection in the months of February and March this year. The violation of the two schools, the QC fire district marshall said, had also been referred to the BFP-NCR-Regional Office for proper action.

 “Let’s close the two schools due to the danger they posed to the children enrolled in their institutions. It is better that we closed them now that the school year is almost over and students will be on vacation. We will give them 2 months to comply before they could resume operation in the next school opening in June,” Bautista said.

The mayor also asked Baruelo to monitor other schools in QC to prevent fire-related incidents that might arise and might bring damage and problem not only to property but also to lives. “It is important that we closely monitor schools since they are high-density establishments,” he said.

Based on reports, some of the violations of Claret School are no AFSS; insufficient fire alarm and detection system; no wet standpipe system; no illuminated directional exit signage; no automatic emergency lights; insufficient portable fire extinguishers; no fire drill/seminar; has not relocated LPG tanks outside building and the tanks were not provided with auto shut-off device; and lack of FALAR.

Blue Ridge Christian Academy, on the other hand,  has three violations such as no standpipe system; no fire drill/seminar; and obstructed fire exit at the second floor.

The strict compliance with the Fire Code is being regularly monitored in QC to avoid disasters like the recent fires that gutted down some residential houses in Barangay Central, Barangay Vasra, and Barangay Bahay Toro. -30- Maureen Quinones, PAISO

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