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close this bookBasic Concepts in Environment, Agriculture and Natural Resources Management: An Information Kit (IIRR, 1993, 151 p.)
close this folderIntroduction
View the documentUse of workshop
View the documentWorkshop participants
View the documentSupport staff
View the documentGlossary of commonly used environmental terms
View the documentList of references

Use of workshop

Many environmental issues involve complex and technical information and processes which are difficult to understand. Majority of the people do not yet understand the very basic issues related to, for example, ozone depletion or global warming or the loss of biodiversity.

The difficult process of simplifying such kinds of information for specific audiences is not systematically implemented on a large scale in the Philippines.

The International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR) believes that there is currently a great need for quality educational printed materials which can be used by teachers, trainors, educators, policymakers, key sector leaders and others throughout the Philippines in the area of environmental education. These printed materials will convey the difficult-to-understand concepts into more appropriate information kits for wider dissemination.

IIRR is aware that there are government and nongovernment organizations (GOs/NGOs) that are currently producing environmental education materials. Therefore, the primary step the Institute took was to network with these GOs and NGOs to establish the state-of-the-art for environmental education materials within the Philippines.

The information kit on the Basic Concepts in the Environment, Agriculture and Natural Resources Management was produced through the use of a workshop involving technical and communication experts. The workshop approach has been successfully implemented by IIRR to speed up and improve the production of various technology-focused kits, such as the Bio-Intensive Gardening, Regenerative Agriculture Technologies, Agroforestry, Low-lnput Rice Production and Integrated Agriculture-Aquaculture Technologies.

The workshop was held on September 14-19, 1992, at the IIRR Campus in Silang, Cavite, Philippines. The participants came from key organizations involved in environmental work, such as Center for Environmental Concerns (CEC), Department of Education, Culture and Sports (DECS), Department of Education, Culture and Sports-EDPITAF (DECS-EDPITAF), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (DENR-PAWB), Department of Health (DOH), Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB), Forum for Rural Concerns (FRC), Green Forum, Haribon Foundation, Institute for Environmental Sciences and Management (IESAM), International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR), Marine Science Institute (MSI), Philippine Environmental Action Network (PEAN), Philippine Ecological Network (PEN), Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM), Philippine Wetland and Wildlife Conservation Foundation, Inc. (PWWCFI) and University of the Philippines at Los Ba(UPLB). Because these participants consisted primarily of the practitioner-types, reflective of the intended user-audience, the potential relevance of the kit was improved. In addition, the papers underwent instant critical peer review and revision, a process which normally takes several days or even weeks. Finally, the presence of communication specialists (writers, editors, artists) facilitated the appropriate presentation and design of materials.

This technology information kit focuses on Philippine situation, is designed for learning about basic concepts, issues and problems related to environment and natural resource use and degradation and is intended for nationwide use by students, trainors and GO/NGO policymakers.

Workshop participants

1. Mr. Rafael Almonte
Center for Environmental Concerns (CEC)
III-A Scout Lozano St.
Barangay Laging Handa, Quezon City

2. Ms. Maribeth Reyes-Baril
Haribon Foundation
340 Villamor Street
San Juan, Metro Manila 1500

3. Mr. Rusty BiBR>Sciences
UPLB, College, Laguna
Reconstruction (IIRR)
#48 Gatuslao Street, Bacolod City

4. Mr. Emmanuel Carmona
Broad Initiatives for Negros Development
Green Alert Negros Environmental Network
2nd Floor, Door 1, Silos Building
Rosario St., Bacolod City~6100

5. Dr. Virginia Cuevas
Institute of Environmental Sciences and
Management (IESAM)
UPLB, College, Laguna

6. Ms. Dolores Ariadne Diamante
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

7. Ms. Teresita Felipe
Department of Education, Culture and Sports
University of Life Complex

8. Ms. Estrella Fernandez
Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement
Kayumanggi Press Building
940 Quezon Avenue, Quezon City

9. Dr. Sandy Fortuna
Field Operational Research Division, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

10. Dr. Julian F. Gonsalves
Vice-President for Program, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

11. Mr. Juan Carlos Gonzalez
Wildlife Biology Laboratory
Institute of Biological
International Institute of Rural

12. Mr. Fernando Hilario
Forum for Rural Concerns (FRC)
Room 336, Eagle Court Condominium
26 Matalino St.
Central District, Quezon City

13. Mr. Eusebio Imperial
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

14. Mr. Greg Ira
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

15. Dr. Marie Antonette Juinio
Marine Science Institute.
University of the Philippines
Diliman, Quezon City

16. Mr. Scott Killough
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite
Meralco Avenue, Pasig, Metro Manila
17. Mr. Ben Maata
c/o IIRR
Silang, Cavite

18. Mr. Eulogio Masilungan
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

19. Ms. Manolita Morales
Philippine Wetland and Wildlife
Conservation Foundation, Inc.
Unit 2, -A. Sing Building
295 Duterte St.
Banawa, Cebu City 6000

20. Ms. Malou Moreno
Ecosystems Research and Development
Bureau (ERDB)
UPLB, College, Laguna

21. Dr. Ismael Pastor
Department of Health
San Lazaro Compound
Tayuman, Sta. Cruz, Manila

22. Ms. Thelma Perez
Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau
Department of Environment and Natural
Quezon Avenue, Diliman
Quezon City

23. Mr. Eseng Quintos
Field Operational Research Division, IIRR

24. Ms. Nelia Quiz
UPLB, College, Laguna

25. Mr. Nestor Roderno
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

26. Ms. Dolores Rubio
Health and Nutrition Center
Department of Education, Culture and Sports
University of Life Complex
Meralco Avenue, Pasig
Metro Manila

27. Mr. Romeo San Buenaventura
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

28. Mr. Teodoro Sevilla
Appropriate Technology Unit, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

29. Mr. Leland Taoingan
Quezon Avenue, Diliman
Quezon City
Silang, Cavite
30. Ms. Meng Yaun
Field Operational Research Division, IIRR
Silang, Cavite

Support staff


Dr. Julian Gonsalves, Mr. Greg Ira, Mr. Scott Killough and


Mr. Jaime Ronquillo


Ms. Donnie Diamante, Ms. Lyn Capistrano-Doren, Mr. Greg Ira,

Mr. Scott Killough, Mr. Eseng Quintos, Mr. Jaime Ronquillo and

Mr. Roger Villar


Mr. Albert Ba Mr. Boy Belardo, Mr. Rafael Bordeo, Mr.

Ric Cantada, Mr. Mitchell Doren, Mr. Bernie Remoquillo and Mr.

Roger Villar


Ms. Lhai Kasala, Ms. Angie Poblete, Ms. Jel Montoya, Mr. Rolly

Secretarial Staff:

Ramos, Ms. Ely Paredes, Ms. Violy Alvez, Ms. Gemma Boado,

Ms. Tess Aquino, Ms. Girlie Belen, Ms. Hilda Amon and Mr. Gerry


Glossary of commonly used environmental terms


a mixture of invisible, odorless and tasteless gases that surround the earth


simple, free-floating water plants

Ambient air

any unconfined portion of the atmosphere; the outside air


growing or living upon water


sand, gravel or rock formation found below the earth's surface which is saturated with water


the mass of air surrounding the earth held by the force of gravity


microscopic, single-celled plants


a material that decomposes in the environment as a result of biological action by microorganisms


the amount of living matter (plants and animals) in a given habitat


leaf area of a woodland


animals that eat meat (other animals)

Carrying capacity

the maximum number of animals that an area can support


green photosynthetic coloring matter in plants


the chemical process of burning which releases heat, light and chemical by-products


lowering of the quality of a resource


using up the total quantity of a resource


a person who studies the relations between organisms and their environment


a unit of the environment comprising the interactions of all organisms and the physical components within a given area


pollutant discharged into the air

Endangered species

plants or animals in danger of becoming extinct through all or part of its range; plants or animals whose numbers have been reduced to a critical level or whose habitats have been so drastically reduced that they are deemed to be in immediate danger of extinction


plants or animals which are unique to particular locality or place and cannot be found elsewhere, e.g., Philippine Eagle or Mindoro Crocodile


the capacity to produce motion, heat or light

Energy conservation

planned management of energy resources which conserves, protects and prevents waste

Energy resources

a measure of national wealth by the production of usable power, such as heat and electricity

Environmental impact

changes in the environment caused by some form of management or mismanagement


the wearing away of land surface


plants or animals which are not native to an area


plants and animals which have not been sighted in the wild during the past 50 years




an organic or inorganic material that is added to the soil to supply elements essential to plant growth



Food chain

an arrangement of predator-prey relationship in an ecosystem

Food web

the interconnected food chains within an ecosystem


all browse and non-woody food that is available to livestock or game animals


a complex community of associated trees, shrubs, other plants and animals


the art and science of managing forests so as to yield, on a continuous basis, a maximum in quality and quantity of forest lands to satisfy human needs

Fossil fuels

hydrocarbon compounds derived from the remains of organisms (plants and animals) buried millions of years ago


involving the entire world

Ground water

water found below the earth's surface

Ground-water recharge

water which seeps through the earth's surface and into the ground water aquifers


the area where an animal or plant naturally lives and grows

Hazardous or toxic waste

waste that poses a serious threat to human health even at extremely low concentrations

Hazardous-waste site

allocation where hazardous waste poses a potential threat to the environment

Heavy metals

metallic elements with high molecular weights; generally toxic to plant and animal life


animals that eat plants

Hydrologic cycle

continuous circulation of water between the oceans, atmosphere and the earth's surface

Industrial waste

waste generated by industries

Irrigated lands

agricultural lands whose water requirements are met by man-made or artificial structures rather than by natural means, such as rain; irrigated lands have water the whole year as against rainfed lands which have water only during the rainy season

Limiting factors

factors that restrict the population potential of a species

Lowland areas

rainfed or irrigated farming land that is flat or gently undulating and that is not very high above sea level


to move from one region or climate to another for feeding or breeding

Migratory birds

birds which travel from one place to another depending on the season


a naturally-occurring inorganic substance in the soil


a layer of plant residue on the soil surface

Municipal waste

waste from cities, primarily sewage


active at night

Nonpoint source pollution

pollution which enters the environment from a wide-area

Nonrenewable energy

resources which cannot be replaced once they are used


mineral elements and compounds (including water and air) which a plant uses for tissue growth and maintenance


animals that eat both animals and plants

Organic compounds

compounds composed of chemicals containing carbon; examples: pesticides, solvents, cleaning compounds, paints

Organic material

plant and animal matter in various stages of decay

Ozone (O3) layer

layer of the atmosphere that protects the earth from the harmful ultraviolet radiation in sunlight


a scale which represents alkalinity or acidity


the downward movement of water into the soil


the ability of the soil to allow air and water to move through it


a chemical used to kill or control pests


a natural, thick, yellow-to-black, flammable liquid hydrocarbon mixture found principally beneath the earth's surface


the process of producing carbohydrates from water, carbon dioxide, chlorophyll and sunlight


suspended, floating, microscopic plants and animals in the water

Plant nutrients

elements essential for plant growth

Points source pollution

pollution which can be traced to a point of discharge


any introduced gas, liquid or solid that makes a resource unfit for a specific purpose


the presence of matter or energy whose nature, location or quantity produces undesirable environmental effects; a reduction in the quality of the environment by the introduction of impurities

Population density

the number of people or animals per unit area; example: people per square kilometer


animals that hunt, kill and consume other animals


an animal taken as food by a predator

Rare species

plants and animals with very small populations that are not, at present, endangered but are at risk.

Rainfed farming land

agricultural land which depends solely on rainfall for its water requirements transforming barren mine areas as nearly as possible to their original condition


to reuse or process waste for beneficial purposes


transforming waste products into new products

Refuge, reserve or wilderness area

an area of land set aside for the protection of wildlife

Renewable energy

energy resources that can be replaced by natural regeneration or human efforts after they are used


wildlife found in a certain locality but may also be found elsewhere


the angle of the soil surface expressed as a percent of rise and fall


the outer portion of the earth's crust that supports plant life


the process by which fish deposit eggs


a group of organisms that resemble each other closely and that interbreed freely


the progressive development of vegetation which replaces one plant community with another in order to reach a climax condition

Surface water

water visible on the earth's surface


the physical features (natural and man-made) on the land's surface


the release of water vapor by leaves into the air

Upland areas

hilly to mountainous lands, including plateaus and table lands lying at high elevations


growth or expansion of cities


useless, unwanted or discarded material

Water pollution

water which is made chemically, biologically or physically impure or unfit for use


the total drainage area where water flows to a common point


the actions that break down rock into soil


swamps or marshes, especially as areas used by wildlife


plants and animals found in their natural habitat undisturbed by man or free from human interference; mammals, birds and fishes which are not domesticated or are free-ranging in their naturally associated habitats


a living barrier of trees and shrubs designed for protection from wind


Darold Hehn and Bob Newport. Introduction to Natural Resources. 1991. Developed by the Mid-America

Curriculum Consortium. Stillwater, OK.

List of references

An Introduction to Tropical Rainforests. Whitmore, T. C. Clarendon Press, Oxford University Press 1990.

A Primer on Wildlife Conservation Education. Baril, J. A. and M. A. Reyes. Haribon Foundation 1991.

Ating Agham (Third Year). Vol XI, No.2, SY 1991-1992. Metallic Pollutants in Natural Waters (condensed), pp.67.

Bato Balani (Freshman), Vol. II No. 5, SY 1991-1992. Effects of Air Pollutants on the Environment. Barril, Carlito, pp. 9-11.

Biology, Epidemiology and Management of Pyrodinium Red Tides. Maclean, J. L., Hallegract G. ICLARM. Manila. 1989

Birds of the Philippines. Pedro C. Gonzales and Colin P. Rees. Haribon Foundation for the Conservation of Natural Resources, Inc. 1988.

Brown and Fisher.1918

Conserve Our Marine Turtles Poster. Pawikan Conservation Project, DENR 1990.

Conserving the World's Biological Diversity. McNeely, Jeffrey A., et. al. IUCN, WRI, WWF-US, World Bank. 1990.

Coral Reef Ecosystem. Analysis of Marine Ecosystem. Lewis, J.B. Edited by A.R. Longhurst. Academic Press, Ltd., San Diego California. 1981.

· DENR-Calendar. 1991.
· DENR Forestry Master Plan. 1990
· DENR Philippine Environment in the '80s
· DOH Summary of Health Effects of Typhoon Ruping. 1990.

Earthquake and Tsunamis. PHILVOCS. DOST. Manila. 1991.

Encyclopedia of Occupational Health and Safety. 1985. 3rd Revised Edition. ILO Publication, 2 Volumes. 2538 pages.

Fundamentals of Ecology. Third Edition. Odum, Eugene P. W. B. Saunders Co. Philadelphia. 1971.

Global Status of Mangrove Ecosystem. Saenger, P. E., J. Hegert and J. D. S. Davie. Commission Paper No.3. International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, AU. du. Mont. Blanc. 1196 Ciland, Switzerland. 1983. p. 88.

Greenpeace Pacific Campaign. Spring 1991.

· Health Alert. Issue No. 113. January 1991
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Investing in Biological Diversity: US Research and Conservation Efforts in Developing Countries. Abramovitz, Janet N. World Resources Institute March 1991.

List of Rare, Endangered, Threatened, Vulnerable, Indeterminate, Insufficiently Known Philippine Species. Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau, DENR.

Living the Environment: An Introduction to Environmental Science. Miller, Jr. G. Tyler. Fifth Edition. Wadsworth Publishing Co., Belmont, California. 1987.

Man, Agriculture and Tropical Rainforest. Sajise P. et. al. DENR, 1990. 25 Years -- Philippine Forestry Action Plan.

Managing our Natural Resources. William G. Camp and Thomas B. Daughtery. Delmar Publishers, Inc. Albany. N. Y. 1988.

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Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Contour for Disease Control. Earthquake Disaster-Luzon Philippines. August 1990; 39 (34) 573-576.

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Report on the Philippine Environment in the Eighties. Environmental Management Bureau. DENR. Quezon City. November 1990.

Resource Book on Sustainable Agriculture for the Uplands. Mindanao Baptist Rural Life Center/Mag-ungmad Foundation, Inc./World Neighbors/International Institute of Rural Reconstruction. 1990.

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Wildlife 101 Manual. Wildlife Biology Laboratory. IBS-CAS, UPLB.