The Philippines, as of 2015, has a total forest land area of 15, 805,325 hectares with a forest cover of 7,014,152 hectares (44%) (FMB, 2019). Steady deforestation rates were observed from 1970 to 2010, with Philippines having about 7 M hectares of forest cover remaining. Forest loss is mainly driven by forest extraction (logging – legal and illegal), agricultural expansion (upland cultivation in forest areas), and infrastructure development (demand for timber products, roadside clearing, and river bound colonization) - Carandang et al. 2013.
About 26% of the Philippine forests are found in the 240 protected areas (covering 5.45 M ha) listed under the National Integrated Protected System (NIPAS) as of 2013 (BMB, 2015). This law was further enhanced thru RA No. 11038 Expanded NIPAS of 2018.