The Institute for Environmental Conservation and Research (INECAR) of the Ateneo de Naga University was one of three recipients of the Gawad Bayani ng Kalikasan in the Organizational Awards Category. The Gawad Bayani ng Kalikasan started in 2009, and the awards are given every two years. The 4th Gawad Bayani ng Kalikasan was held last 2 December 2015 at the NISMED Auditorium in UP Diliman. There was a total of 8 organization nominees from all over the Philippines.
The INECAR along with Bukluran para sa Inang Kalikasan (Bukal)-Batangas and the Talibon-Trinidad Integrated Farmers Association (Most Distinguished Awardee) made it as GBK organizational awardees. There were also three Individual Awardees chosen out of eight individual nominees. The individual awardees included Marieta Corpuz, Most Rev. Jose R. Manguiran and Engr. Fidella “Delle” Salvador (posthumous award).
As written in the Gawad Bayani ng Kalikasan 2015 program souvenir, “The Gawad Bayani ng Kalikasan aims to:
a. Promote awareness of critical environmental issues and the situation of the communities directly relying on the natural resources;
b. Recognize the valiant struggles of the people to defend the environment, lives, and rights, to serve as an example and lesson to the people who continue to confront similar challenges;
c. Recognize the exemplary deeds and initiatives of simple individuals and organizations who have contributed to upholding the environment and people’s welfare at the national or local levels; and
d. Strengthen the link between the sustainable preservation and conservation of the environment with the struggle for social, economic and political rights.”
The Director of the INECAR is Dr. Emelina G. Regis, a holder of the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Science from the University of the Philippines-Diliman.