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6969, Toxic Substances

ENVIRONMENTAL CASES and Hazardous Waste Act;

PART I (l) R.A. No. 7076, People’s Small-

Scale Mining Act;
GENERAL PROVISIONS (m) R.A. No. 7586, National
Integrated Protected Areas System
Section 1. Title. — These Rules shall be Act including all laws, decrees,
known as "The Rules of Procedure for orders, proclamations and issuances
Environmental Cases." establishing protected areas;

Section 2. Scope. — These Rules shall (n) R.A. No. 7611, Strategic
govern the procedure in civil, criminal and Environmental Plan for Palawan Act;
special civil actions before the Regional
Trial Courts, Metropolitan Trial Courts, (o) R.A. No. 7942, Philippine Mining
Municipal Trial Courts in Cities, Municipal Act;
Trial Courts and Municipal Circuit Trial
Courts involving enforcement or violations (p) R.A. No. 8371, Indigenous
of environmental and other related laws, Peoples Rights Act;
rules and regulations such as but not limited
to the following: (q) R.A. No. 8550, Philippine
Fisheries Code;
(a) Act No. 3572, Prohibition Against
Cutting of Tindalo, Akli, and Molave (r) R.A. No. 8749, Clean Air Act;
(s) R.A. No. 9003, Ecological Solid
(b) P.D. No. 705, Revised Forestry Waste Management Act;
(t) R.A. No. 9072, National Caves
(c) P.D. No. 856, Sanitation Code; and Cave Resource Management
(d) P.D. No. 979, Marine Pollution
Decree; (u) R.A. No. 9147, Wildlife
Conservation and Protection Act;
(e) P.D. No. 1067, Water Code;
(v) R.A. No. 9175, Chainsaw Act;
(f) P.D. No. 1151, Philippine
Environmental Policy of 1977; (w) R.A. No. 9275, Clean Water Act;

(g) P.D. No. 1433, Plant Quarantine (x) R.A. No. 9483, Oil Spill
Law of 1978; Compensation Act of 2007; and

(h) P.D. No. 1586, Establishing an (y) Provisions in C.A. No. 141, The
Environmental Impact Statement Public Land Act; R.A. No. 6657,
System Including Other Comprehensive Agrarian Reform
Environmental Management Related Law of 1988; R.A. No. 7160, Local
Measures and for Other Purposes; Government Code of 1991; R.A. No.
7161, Tax Laws Incorporated in the
(i) R.A. No. 3571, Prohibition Against Revised Forestry Code and Other
the Cutting, Destroying or Injuring of Environmental Laws (Amending the
Planted or Growing Trees, Flowering NIRC); R.A. No. 7308, Seed Industry
Plants and Shrubs or Plants of Development Act of 1992; R.A. No.
Scenic Value along Public Roads, in 7900, High-Value Crops
Plazas, Parks, School Premises or Development
in any Other Public Ground;
Rules of Procedure for Environmental
(j) R.A. No. 4850, Laguna Lake Cases Act; R.A. No. 8048, Coconut
Development Authority Act; Preservation Act; R.A. No. 8435, Agriculture
and Fisheries Modernization Act of 1997;
R.A. No. 9522, The Philippine Archipelagic
Baselines Law; R.A. No. 9593, Renewable (d) Environmental protection order
Energy Act of 2008; R.A. No. 9637, (EPO) refers to an order issued by
Philippine Biofuels Act; and other existing the court directing or enjoining any
laws that relate to the conservation, person or government agency to
development, preservation, protection and perform or desist from performing an
utilization of the environment and natural act in order to protect, preserve or
resources. rehabilitate the environment.

Section 3. Objectives. - The objectives of (e) Mineral refers to all naturally

these Rules are: occurring inorganic substance in
solid, gas, liquid, or any intermediate
(a) To protect and advance the state excluding energy materials
constitutional right of the people to a such as coal, petroleum, natural gas,
balanced and healthful ecology; radioactive materials and
geothermal energy.
(b) To provide a simplified, speedy
and inexpensive procedure for the (f) Precautionary principle states that
enforcement of environmental rights when human activities may lead to
and duties recognized under the threats of serious and irreversible
Constitution, existing laws, rules and damage to the environment that is
regulations, and international scientifically plausible but uncertain,
agreements; actions shall be taken to avoid or
diminish that threat.
(c) To introduce and adopt
innovations and best practices (g) Strategic lawsuit against public
ensuring the effective enforcement participation (SLAPP) refers to an
of remedies and redress for violation action whether civil, criminal or
of environmental laws; and administrative, brought against any
person, institution or any
(d) To enable the courts to monitor government agency or local
and exact compliance with orders government unit or its officials and
and judgments in environmental employees, with the intent to harass,
cases. vex, exert undue pressure or stifle
any legal recourse that such person,
Section 4. Definition of Terms. - institution or government agency has
taken or may take in the
(a) By-product or derivatives means enforcement of environmental laws,
any part taken or substance protection of the environment or
extracted from wildlife, in raw or in assertion of environmental rights.
processed form including stuffed
animals and herbarium (h) Wildlife means wild forms and
specimens. 1avvphi1 varieties of flora and fauna, in all
developmental stages including
(b) Consent decree refers to a those which are in captivity or are
judicially-approved settlement being bred or propagated.
between concerned parties based
on public interest and public policy to PART II
protect and preserve the CIVIL PROCEDURE
(c) Continuing mandamus is a writ PLEADINGS AND PARTIES
issued by a court in an
environmental case directing any Section 1. Pleadings and motions
agency or instrumentality of the allowed. — The pleadings and motions that
government or officer thereof to may be filed are complaint, answer which
perform an act or series of acts may include compulsory counterclaim and
decreed by final judgment which cross-claim, motion for intervention, motion
shall remain effective until judgment for discovery and motion for reconsideration
is fully satisfied. of the judgment.
Motion for postponement, motion for new cause of action and the reliefs prayed for,
trial and petition for relief from judgment requiring all interested parties to manifest
shall be allowed in highly meritorious cases their interest to intervene in the case within
or to prevent a manifest miscarriage of fifteen (15) days from notice thereof. The
justice. plaintiff may publish the order once in a
newspaper of a general circulation in the
Section 2. Prohibited pleadings or Philippines or furnish all affected barangays
motions. — The following pleadings or copies of said order.
motions shall not be allowed:
Citizen suits filed under R.A. No. 8749 and
(a) Motion to dismiss the complaint; R.A. No. 9003 shall be governed by their
respective provisions.
(b) Motion for a bill of particulars;
Section 6. Service of the complaint on the
(c) Motion for extension of time to government or its agencies. - Upon the filing
file pleadings, except to file answer, of the complaint, the plaintiff is required to
the extension not to exceed fifteen furnish the government or the appropriate
(15) days; agency, although not a party, a copy of the
complaint. Proof of service upon the
(d) Motion to declare the defendant government or the appropriate agency shall
in default; be attached to the complaint.

(e) Reply and rejoinder; and Section 7. Assignment by raffle. - If there is

only one (1) designated branch in a
(f) Third party complaint. multiple-sala court, the executive judge shall
immediately refer the case to said branch. If
there are two (2) or more designated
Section 3. Verified complaint. — The
branches, the executive judge shall conduct
verified complaint shall contain the names
a special raffle on the day the complaint is
of the parties, their addresses, the cause of
action and the reliefs prayed for.
Section 8. Issuance of Temporary
The plaintiff shall attach to the verified
Environmental Protection Order (TEPO). - If
complaint all evidence proving or supporting
it appears from the verified complaint with a
the cause of action consisting of the
prayer for the issuance of an Environmental
affidavits of witnesses, documentary
Protection Order (EPO) that the matter is of
evidence and if possible, object evidence.
extreme urgency and the applicant will
The affidavits shall be in question and
suffer grave injustice and irreparable injury,
answer form and shall comply with the rules
the executive judge of the multiple-sala
of admissibility of evidence.
court before raffle or the presiding judge of
a single-sala court as the case may be, may
The complaint shall state that it is an issue ex parte a TEPO effective for only
environmental case and the law involved. seventy-two (72) hours from date of the
The complaint shall also include a receipt of the TEPO by the party or person
certification against forum shopping. If the enjoined. Within said period, the court
complaint is not an environmental where the case is assigned, shall conduct a
complaint, the presiding judge shall refer it summary hearing to determine whether the
to the executive judge for re-raffle. TEPO may be extended until the
termination of the case.
Section 4. Who may file. — Any real party
in interest, including the government and The court where the case is assigned, shall
juridical entities authorized by law, may file periodically monitor the existence of acts
a civil action involving the enforcement or that are the subject matter of the TEPO
violation of any environmental law. even if issued by the executive judge, and
may lift the same at any time as
Section 5. Citizen suit. — Any Filipino circumstances may warrant.
citizen in representation of others, including
minors or generations yet unborn, may file The applicant shall be exempted from the
an action to enforce rights or obligations posting of a bond for the issuance of a
under environmental laws. Upon the filing of TEPO.
a citizen suit, the court shall issue an order
which shall contain a brief description of the
Section 9. Action on motion for dissolution that purpose be considered an officer of the
of TEPO. - The grounds for motion to court.
dissolve a TEPO shall be supported by
affidavits of the party or person enjoined The summons shall be served on the
which the applicant may oppose, also by defendant, together with a copy of an order
affidavits. informing all parties that they have fifteen
(15) days from the filing of an answer, within
The TEPO may be dissolved if it appears which to avail of interrogatories to parties
after hearing that its issuance or under Rule 25 of the Rules of Court and
continuance would cause irreparable request for admission by adverse party
damage to the party or person enjoined under Rule 26, or at their discretion, make
while the applicant may be fully use of depositions under Rule 23 or other
compensated for such damages as he may measures under Rules 27 and 28.
suffer and subject to the posting of a
sufficient bond by the party or person Should personal and substituted service fail,
enjoined. summons by publication shall be allowed. In
the case of juridical entities, summons by
Section 10. Prohibition against temporary publication shall be done by indicating the
restraining order (TRO) and preliminary names of the officers or their duly
injunction. - Except the Supreme Court, no authorized representatives.
court can issue a TRO or writ of preliminary
injunction against lawful actions of Section 14. Verified answer. - Within fifteen
government agencies that enforce (15) days from receipt of summons, the
environmental laws or prevent violations defendant shall file a verified answer to the
thereof. complaint and serve a copy thereof on the
plaintiff. The defendant shall attach
Section 11. Report on TEPO, EPO, TRO or affidavits of witnesses, reports, studies of
preliminary injunction. - The judge shall experts and all evidence in support of the
report any action taken on a TEPO, EPO, defense.
TRO or a preliminary injunction, including its
modification and dissolution, to the Affirmative and special defenses not
Supreme Court, through the Office of the pleaded shall be deemed waived, except
Court Administrator, within ten (10) days lack of jurisdiction.
from the action taken.
Cross-claims and compulsory counterclaims
Section 12. Payment of filing and other not asserted shall be considered barred.
legal fees. - The payment of filing and other The answer to counterclaims or cross-
legal fees by the plaintiff shall be deferred claims shall be filed and served within ten
until after judgment unless the plaintiff is (10) days from service of the answer in
allowed to litigate as an indigent. It shall which they are pleaded.
constitute a first lien on the judgment award.
Section 15. Effect of failure to answer. -
For a citizen suit, the court shall defer the Should the defendant fail to answer the
payment of filing and other legal fees that complaint within the period provided, the
shall serve as first lien on the judgment court shall declare defendant in default and
award. upon motion of the plaintiff, shall receive
evidence ex parte and render judgment
Section 13. Service of summons, orders based thereon and the reliefs prayed for.
and other court processes. - The summons,
orders and other court processes may be RULE 3
served by the sheriff, his deputy or other PRE-TRIAL
proper court officer or for justifiable reasons,
by the counsel or representative of the Section 1. Notice of pre-trial. - Within two
plaintiff or any suitable person authorized or (2) days from the filing of the answer to the
deputized by the court issuing the counterclaim or cross-claim, if any, the
summons. branch clerk of court shall issue a notice of
the pre-trial to be held not later than one (1)
Any private person who is authorized or month from the filing of the last pleading.
deputized by the court to serve summons,
orders and other court processes shall for The court shall schedule the pre-trial and
set as many pre-trial conferences as may
be necessary within a period of two (2) shall inquire from the parties if they have
months counted from the date of the first settled the dispute; otherwise, the court
pre-trial conference. shall immediately refer the parties or their
counsel, if authorized by their clients, to the
Section 2. Pre-trial brief. - At least three (3) Philippine Mediation Center (PMC) unit for
days before the pretrial, the parties shall purposes of mediation. If not available, the
submit pre-trial briefs containing the court shall refer the case to the clerk of
following: court or legal researcher for mediation.

(a) A statement of their willingness Mediation must be conducted within a non-

to enter into an amicable settlement extendible period of thirty (30) days from
indicating the desired terms thereof receipt of notice of referral to mediation.
or to submit the case to any of the
alternative modes of dispute The mediation report must be submitted
resolution; within ten (10) days from the expiration of
the 30-day period.
(b) A summary of admitted facts and
proposed stipulation of facts; Section 4. Preliminary conference. - If
mediation fails, the court will schedule the
(c) The legal and factual issues to be continuance of the pre-trial. Before the
tried or resolved. For each factual scheduled date of continuance, the court
issue, the parties shall state all may refer the case to the branch clerk of
evidence to support their positions court for a preliminary conference for the
thereon. For each legal issue, following purposes:
parties shall state the applicable law
and jurisprudence supporting their (a) To assist the parties in reaching
respective positions thereon; a settlement;

(d) The documents or exhibits to be (b) To mark the documents or

presented, including depositions, exhibits to be presented by the
answers to interrogatories and parties and copies thereof to be
answers to written request for attached to the records after
admission by adverse party, stating comparison with the originals;
the purpose thereof;
(c) To ascertain from the parties the
(e) A manifestation of their having undisputed facts and admissions on
availed of discovery procedures or the genuineness and due execution
their intention to avail themselves of of the documents marked as
referral to a commissioner or panel exhibits;
of experts;
(d) To require the parties to submit
(f) The number and names of the the depositions taken under Rule 23
witnesses and the substance of their of the Rules of Court, the answers to
affidavits; written interrogatories under Rule
25, and the answers to request for
(g) Clarificatory questions from the admissions by the adverse party
parties; and under Rule 26;

(h) List of cases arising out of the (e) To require the production of
same facts pending before other documents or things requested by a
courts or administrative agencies. party under Rule 27 and the results
Failure to comply with the required of the physical and mental
contents of a pre-trial brief may be a examination of persons under Rule
ground for contempt. 28;

Failure to file the pre-trial brief shall have (f) To consider such other matters as
the same effect as failure to appear at the may aid in its prompt disposition;
(g) To record the proceedings in the
Section 3. Referral to mediation. - At the "Minutes of Preliminary Conference"
start of the pre-trial conference, the court
to be signed by both parties or their (b) Determine if there are cases
counsels; arising out of the same facts pending
before other courts and order its
(h) To mark the affidavits of consolidation if warranted;
witnesses which shall be in question
and answer form and shall constitute (c) Determine if the pleadings are in
the direct examination of the order and if not, order the
witnesses; and amendments if necessary;

(i) To attach the minutes together (d) Determine if interlocutory issues

with the marked exhibits before the are involved and resolve the same;
pre-trial proper.
(e) Consider the adding or dropping
The parties or their counsel must submit to of parties;
the branch clerk of court the names,
addresses and contact numbers of the (f) Scrutinize every single allegation
affiants. of the complaint, answer and other
pleadings and attachments thereto,
During the preliminary conference, the and the contents of documents and
branch clerk of court shall also require the all other evidence identified and pre-
parties to submit the depositions taken marked during pre-trial in
under Rule 23 of the Rules of Court, the determining further admissions;
answers to written interrogatories under
Rule 25 and the answers to request for (g) Obtain admissions based on the
admissions by the adverse party under Rule affidavits of witnesses and evidence
26. The branch clerk of court may also attached to the pleadings or
require the production of documents or submitted during pre-trial;
things requested by a party under Rule 27
and the results of the physical and mental (h) Define and simplify the factual
examination of persons under Rule 28. and legal issues arising from the
pleadings and evidence.
Section 5. Pre-trial conference; consent Uncontroverted issues and frivolous
decree. - The judge shall put the parties and claims or defenses should be
their counsels under oath, and they shall eliminated;
remain under oath in all pre-trial
conferences. (i) Discuss the propriety of rendering
a summary judgment or a judgment
The judge shall exert best efforts to based on the pleadings, evidence
persuade the parties to arrive at a and admissions made during pre-
settlement of the dispute. The judge may trial;
issue a consent decree approving the
agreement between the parties in (j) Observe the Most Important
accordance with law, morals, public order Witness Rule in limiting the number
and public policy to protect the right of the of witnesses, determining the facts
people to a balanced and healthful ecology. to be proved by each witness and
fixing the approximate number of
Evidence not presented during the pre-trial, hours per witness;
except newly-discovered evidence, shall be
deemed waived. (k) Encourage referral of the case to
a trial by commissioner under Rule
Section 6. Failure to settle. - If there is no 32 of the Rules of Court or to a
full settlement, the judge shall: mediator or arbitrator under any of
the alternative modes of dispute
(a) Adopt the minutes of the resolution governed by the Special
preliminary conference as part of the Rules of Court on Alternative
pre-trial proceedings and confirm the Dispute Resolution;
markings of exhibits or substituted
photocopies and admissions on the (l) Determine the necessity of
genuineness and due execution of engaging the services of a qualified
documents; expert as a friend of the court
(amicus curiae); and
(m) Ask parties to agree on the Section 2. Affidavits in lieu of direct
specific trial dates for continuous examination. - In lieu of direct examination,
trial, comply with the one-day affidavits marked during the pre-trial shall
examination of witness rule, adhere be presented as direct examination of
to the case flow chart determined by affiants subject to cross-
the court which shall contain the
different stages of the proceedings examination by the adverse party.
up to the promulgation of the
decision and use the time frame for Section 3. One-day examination of witness
each stage in setting the trial dates. rule. - The court shall strictly adhere to the
rule that a witness has to be fully examined
Section 7. Effect of failure to appear at pre- in one (1) day, subject to the court’s
trial. - The court shall not dismiss the discretion of extending the examination for
complaint, except upon repeated and justifiable reason. After the presentation of
unjustified failure of the plaintiff to appear. the last witness, only oral offer of evidence
The dismissal shall be without prejudice, shall be allowed, and the opposing party
and the court may proceed with the shall immediately interpose his objections.
counterclaim. The judge shall forthwith rule on the offer of
evidence in open court.
If the defendant fails to appear at the pre-
trial, the court shall receive evidence ex Section 4. Submission of case for decision;
parte. filing of memoranda. - After the last party
has rested its case, the court shall issue an
Section 8. Minutes of pre-trial. - The order submitting the case for decision.
minutes of each pre-trial conference shall
contain matters taken up therein, more The court may require the parties to submit
particularly admissions of facts and exhibits, their respective memoranda, if possible in
and shall be signed by the parties and their electronic form, within a non-extendible
counsel. period of thirty (30) days from the date the
case is submitted for decision.
Section 9. Pre-trial order. - Within ten (10)
days after the termination of the pre-trial, The court shall have a period of sixty (60)
the court shall issue a pre-trial order setting days to decide the case from the date the
forth the actions taken during the pre-trial case is submitted for decision.
conference, the facts stipulated, the
admissions made, the evidence marked, the Section 5. Period to try and decide. - The
number of witnesses to be presented and court shall have a period of one (1) year
the schedule of trial. Said order shall bind from the filing of the complaint to try and
the parties, limit the trial to matters not decide the case. Before the expiration of the
disposed of and control the course of action one-year period, the court may petition the
during the trial. Supreme Court for the extension of the
period for justifiable cause.
Section 10. Efforts to settle. - The court
shall endeavor to make the parties agree to The court shall prioritize the adjudication of
compromise or settle in accordance with law environmental cases.
at any stage of the proceedings before
rendition of judgment. RULE 5
TRIAL Section 1. Reliefs in a citizen suit. - If
warranted, the court may grant to the
Section 1. Continuous trial. - The judge plaintiff proper reliefs which shall include the
shall conduct continuous trial which shall protection, preservation or rehabilitation of
not exceed two (2) months from the date of the environment and the payment of
the issuance of the pre-trial order. attorney’s fees, costs of suit and other
litigation expenses. It may also require the
Before the expiration of the two-month violator to submit a program of rehabilitation
period, the judge may ask the Supreme or restoration of the environment, the costs
Court for the extension of the trial period for of which shall be borne by the violator, or to
justifiable cause. contribute to a special trust fund for that
purpose subject to the control of the court.
Section 2. Judgment not stayed by Section 2. SLAPP as a defense; how
appeal. - Any judgment directing the alleged. - In a SLAPP filed against a person
performance of acts for the protection, involved in the enforcement of
preservation or rehabilitation of the environmental laws, protection of the
environment shall be executory pending environment, or assertion of environmental
appeal unless restrained by the appellate rights, the defendant may file an answer
court. interposing as a defense that the case is a
SLAPP and shall be supported by
Section 3. Permanent EPO; writ of documents, affidavits, papers and other
continuing mandamus. - In the judgment, evidence; and, by way of counterclaim, pray
the court may convert the TEPO to a for damages, attorney’s fees and costs of
permanent EPO or issue a writ of continuing suit.
mandamus directing the performance of
acts which shall be effective until the The court shall direct the plaintiff or adverse
judgment is fully satisfied. party to file an opposition showing the suit is
not a SLAPP, attaching evidence in support
The court may, by itself or through the thereof, within a non-extendible period of
appropriate government agency, monitor five (5) days from receipt of notice that an
the execution of the judgment and require answer has been filed.
the party concerned to submit written
reports on a quarterly basis or sooner as The defense of a SLAPP shall be set for
may be necessary, detailing the progress of hearing by the court after issuance of the
the execution and satisfaction of the order to file an opposition within fifteen (15)
judgment. The other party may, at its option, days from filing of the comment or the lapse
submit its comments or observations on the of the period.
execution of the judgment.
Section 3. Summary hearing. - The hearing
Section 4. Monitoring of compliance with on the defense of a SLAPP shall be
judgment and orders of the court by a summary in nature. The parties must submit
commissioner. - The court may motu all available evidence in support of their
proprio, or upon motion of the prevailing respective positions. The party seeking the
party, order that the enforcement of the dismissal of the case must prove by
judgment or order be referred to a substantial evidence that his act for the
commissioner to be appointed by the court. enforcement of environmental law is a
The commissioner shall file with the court legitimate action for the protection,
written progress reports on a quarterly basis preservation and rehabilitation of the
or more frequently when necessary. environment. The party filing the action
assailed as a SLAPP shall prove by
Section 5. Return of writ of execution. - The preponderance of evidence that the action
process of execution shall terminate upon a is not a SLAPP and is a valid claim.
sufficient showing that the decision or order
has been implemented to the satisfaction of Section 4. Resolution of the defense of a
the court in accordance with Section 14, SLAPP. - The affirmative defense of a
Rule 39 of the Rules of Court. SLAPP shall be resolved within thirty (30)
days after the summary hearing. If the court
RULE 6 dismisses the action, the court may award
STRATEGIC LAWSUIT AGAINST PUBLIC damages, attorney’s fees and costs of suit
PARTICIPATION under a counterclaim if such has been filed.
The dismissal shall be with prejudice.
Section 1. Strategic lawsuit against public
participation (SLAPP). - A legal action filed If the court rejects the defense of a SLAPP,
to harass, vex, exert undue pressure or the evidence adduced during the summary
stifle any legal recourse that any person, hearing shall be treated as evidence of the
institution or the government has taken or parties on the merits of the case. The action
may take in the enforcement of shall proceed in accordance with the Rules
environmental laws, protection of the of Court.
environment or assertion of environmental
rights shall be treated as a SLAPP and shall PART III
be governed by these Rules. SPECIAL CIVIL ACTIONS
RULE 7 pending, petitioner shall report to the
WRIT OF KALIKASAN court that fact within five (5) days
therefrom; and
Section 1. Nature of the writ. - The writ is a
remedy available to a natural or juridical (f) The reliefs prayed for which may
person, entity authorized by law, people’s include a prayer for the issuance of
organization, non-governmental a TEPO.
organization, or any public interest group
accredited by or registered with any Section 3. Where to file. - The petition shall
government agency, on behalf of persons be filed with the Supreme Court or with any
whose constitutional right to a balanced and of the stations of the Court of Appeals.
healthful ecology is violated, or threatened
with violation by an unlawful act or omission Section 4. No docket fees. - The petitioner
of a public official or employee, or private shall be exempt from the payment of docket
individual or entity, involving environmental
damage of such magnitude as to prejudice fees.
the life, health or property of inhabitants in
two or more cities or provinces. Section 5. Issuance of the writ. - Within
three (3) days from the date of filing of the
Section 2. Contents of the petition. - The petition, if the petition is sufficient in form
verified petition shall contain the following: and substance, the court shall give an
order: (a) issuing the writ; and (b) requiring
(a) The personal circumstances of the respondent to file a verified return as
the petitioner; provided in Section 8 of this Rule. The clerk
of court shall forthwith issue the writ under
(b) The name and personal the seal of the court including the issuance
circumstances of the respondent or of a cease and desist order and other
if the name and personal temporary reliefs effective until further order.
circumstances are unknown and
uncertain, the respondent may be Section 6. How the writ is served. - The writ
described by an assumed shall be served upon the respondent by a
appellation; court officer or any person deputized by the
court, who shall retain a copy on which to
(c) The environmental law, rule or make a return of service. In case the writ
regulation violated or threatened to cannot be served personally, the rule on
be violated, the act or omission substituted service shall apply.
complained of, and the
environmental damage of such Section 7. Penalty for refusing to issue or
magnitude as to prejudice the life, serve the writ. - A clerk of court who unduly
health or property of inhabitants in delays or refuses to issue the writ after its
two or more cities or provinces. allowance or a court officer or deputized
person who unduly delays or refuses to
(d) All relevant and material serve the same shall be punished by the
evidence consisting of the affidavits court for contempt without prejudice to other
of witnesses, documentary civil, criminal or administrative actions.
evidence, scientific or other expert
studies, and if possible, object Section 8. Return of respondent; contents. -
evidence; Within a non-extendible period of ten (10)
days after service of the writ, the
(e) The certification of petitioner respondent shall file a verified return which
under oath that: (1) petitioner has shall contain all defenses to show that
not commenced any action or filed respondent did not violate or threaten to
any claim involving the same issues violate, or allow the violation of any
in any court, tribunal or quasi-judicial environmental law, rule or regulation or
agency, and no such other action or commit any act resulting to environmental
claim is pending therein; (2) if there damage of such magnitude as to prejudice
is such other pending action or the life, health or property of inhabitants in
claim, a complete statement of its two or more cities or provinces.
present status; (3) if petitioner
should learn that the same or similar All defenses not raised in the return shall be
action or claim has been filed or is deemed waived.
The return shall include affidavits of provinces. It shall state in detail the
witnesses, documentary evidence, scientific place or places to be inspected. It
or other expert studies, and if possible, shall be supported by affidavits of
object evidence, in support of the defense of witnesses having personal
the respondent. knowledge of the violation or
threatened violation of
A general denial of allegations in the petition environmental law.
shall be considered as an admission
thereof. After hearing, the court may order
any person in possession or control
Section 9. Prohibited pleadings and of a designated land or other
motions. - The following pleadings and property to permit entry for the
motions are prohibited: purpose of inspecting or

(a) Motion to dismiss; photographing the property or any

relevant object or operation thereon.
(b) Motion for extension of time to
file return; The order shall specify the person or
persons authorized to make the
(c) Motion for postponement; inspection and the date, time, place
and manner of making the
(d) Motion for a bill of particulars; inspection and may prescribe other
conditions to protect the
(e) Counterclaim or cross-claim; constitutional rights of all parties.

(f) Third-party complaint; (b) Production or inspection of

documents or things; order – The
motion must show that a production
(g) Reply; and
order is necessary to establish the
magnitude of the violation or the
(h) Motion to declare respondent in threat as to prejudice the life, health
default. or property of inhabitants in two or
more cities or provinces.
Section 10. Effect of failure to file return. -
In case the respondent fails to file a return, After hearing, the court may order
the court shall proceed to hear the petition any person in possession, custody
ex parte. or control of any designated
documents, papers, books,
Section 11. Hearing. - Upon receipt of the accounts, letters, photographs,
return of the respondent, the court may call objects or tangible things, or objects
a preliminary conference to simplify the in digitized or electronic form, which
issues, determine the possibility of obtaining constitute or contain evidence
stipulations or admissions from the parties, relevant to the petition or the return,
and set the petition for hearing. to produce and permit their
inspection, copying or photographing
The hearing including the preliminary by or on behalf of the movant.
conference shall not extend beyond sixty
(60) days and shall be given the same The production order shall specify the
priority as petitions for the writs of habeas person or persons authorized to make the
corpus, amparo and habeas data. production and the date, time, place and
manner of making the inspection or
Section 12. Discovery Measures. - A party production and may prescribe other
may file a verified motion for the following conditions to protect the constitutional rights
reliefs: of all parties.

(a) Ocular Inspection; order — The Section 13. Contempt. - The court may
motion must show that an ocular after hearing punish the respondent who
inspection order is necessary to refuses or unduly delays the filing of a
establish the magnitude of the return, or who makes a false return, or any
violation or the threat as to prejudice person who disobeys or resists a lawful
the life, health or property of process or order of the court for indirect
inhabitants in two or more cities or
contempt under Rule 71 of the Rules of Rules of Court. The appeal may raise
Court. questions of fact.

Section 14. Submission of case for Section 17. Institution of separate actions. -
decision; filing of memoranda. - After The filing of a petition for the issuance of the
hearing, the court shall issue an order writ of kalikasan shall not preclude the filing
submitting the case for decision. The court of separate civil, criminal or administrative
may require the filing of memoranda and if actions.
possible, in its electronic form, within a non-
extendible period of thirty (30) days from the RULE 8
date the petition is submitted for decision. WRIT OF CONTINUING MANDAMUS

Section 15. Judgment. - Within sixty (60) Section 1. Petition for continuing
days from the time the petition is submitted mandamus. - When any agency or
for decision, the court shall render judgment instrumentality of the government or officer
granting or denying the privilege of the writ thereof unlawfully neglects the performance
of kalikasan. of an act which the law specifically enjoins
as a duty resulting from an office, trust or
The reliefs that may be granted under the station in connection with the enforcement
writ are the following: or violation of an environmental law rule or
regulation or a right therein, or unlawfully
(a) Directing respondent to excludes another from the use or enjoyment
permanently cease and desist from of such right and there is no other plain,
committing acts or neglecting the speedy and adequate remedy in the
performance of a duty in violation of ordinary course of law, the person
environmental laws resulting in aggrieved thereby may file a verified petition
environmental destruction or in the proper court, alleging the facts with
damage; certainty, attaching thereto supporting
evidence, specifying that the petition
(b) Directing the respondent public concerns an environmental law, rule or
official, government agency, private regulation, and praying that judgment be
person or entity to protect, preserve, rendered commanding the respondent to do
rehabilitate or restore the an act or series of acts until the judgment is
environment; fully satisfied, and to pay damages
sustained by the petitioner by reason of the
(c) Directing the respondent public malicious neglect to perform the duties of
official, government agency, private the respondent, under the law, rules or
person or entity to monitor strict regulations. The petition shall also contain a
compliance with the decision and sworn certification of non-forum shopping.
orders of the court;
Section 2. Where to file the petition. - The
(d) Directing the respondent public petition shall be filed with the Regional Trial
official, government agency, or Court exercising jurisdiction over the
private person or entity to make territory where the actionable neglect or
periodic reports on the execution of omission occurred or with the Court of
the final judgment; and Appeals or the Supreme Court.

(e) Such other reliefs which relate to Section 3. No docket fees. - The petitioner
the right of the people to a balanced shall be exempt from the payment of docket
and healthful ecology or to the fees.
protection, preservation,
rehabilitation or restoration of the Section 4. Order to comment. - If the
petition is sufficient in form and substance,
environment, except the award of the court shall issue the writ and require the
damages to individual petitioners. respondent to comment on the petition
within ten (10) days from receipt of a copy
Section 16. Appeal. - Within fifteen (15) thereof. Such order shall be served on the
days from the date of notice of the adverse respondents in such manner as the court
judgment or denial of motion for may direct, together with a copy of the
reconsideration, any party may appeal to petition and any annexes thereto.
the Supreme Court under Rule 45 of the
Section 5. Expediting proceedings; TEPO. - violation of an environmental law and
The court in which the petition is filed may subscribed by the prosecutor, shall be filed
issue such orders to expedite the with the court.
proceedings, and it may also grant a TEPO
for the preservation of the rights of the Section 3. Special prosecutor. - In criminal
parties pending such proceedings. cases, where there is no private offended
party, a counsel whose services are offered
Section 6. Proceedings after comment is by any person or organization may be
filed. - After the comment is filed or the time allowed by the court as special prosecutor,
for the filing thereof has expired, the court with the consent of and subject to the
may hear the case which shall be summary control and supervision of the public
in nature or require the parties to submit prosecutor.
memoranda. The petition shall be resolved
without delay within sixty (60) days from the RULE 10
date of the submission of the petition for PROSECUTION OF CIVIL ACTIONS
Section 1. Institution of criminal and civil
Section 7. Judgment. - If warranted, the actions. - When a criminal action is
court shall grant the privilege of the writ of instituted, the civil action for the recovery of
continuing mandamus requiring respondent civil liability arising from the offense
to perform an act or series of acts until the charged, shall be deemed instituted with the
judgment is fully satisfied and to grant such criminal action unless the complainant
other reliefs as may be warranted resulting waives the civil action, reserves the right to
from the wrongful or illegal acts of the institute it separately or institutes the civil
respondent. The court shall require the action prior to the criminal action.
respondent to submit periodic reports
detailing the progress and execution of the Unless the civil action has been instituted
judgment, and the court may, by itself or prior to the criminal action, the reservation
through a commissioner or the appropriate of the right to institute separately the civil
government agency, evaluate and monitor action shall be made during arraignment.
compliance. The petitioner may submit its
comments or observations on the execution In case civil liability is imposed or damages
of the judgment. are awarded, the filing and other legal fees
shall be imposed on said award in
Section 8. Return of the writ. - The periodic accordance with Rule 141 of the Rules of
reports submitted by the respondent Court, and the fees shall constitute a first
detailing compliance with the judgment shall lien on the judgment award. The damages
be contained in partial returns of the writ. awarded in cases where there is no private
offended party, less the filing fees, shall
Upon full satisfaction of the judgment, a final accrue to the funds of the agency charged
return of the writ shall be made to the court with the implementation of the
by the respondent. If the court finds that the environmental law violated. The award shall
judgment has been fully implemented, the be used for the restoration and rehabilitation
satisfaction of judgment shall be entered in of the environment adversely affected.
the court docket.
Section 1. Arrest without warrant; when
RULE 9 lawful. - A peace officer or an individual
PROSECUTION OF OFFENSES deputized by the proper government agency
may, without a warrant, arrest a person:
Section 1. Who may file. - Any offended
party, peace officer or any public officer (a) When, in his presence, the
charged with the enforcement of an person to be arrested has
environmental law may file a complaint committed, is actually committing or
before the proper officer in accordance with is attempting to commit an offense;
the Rules of Court. or

Section 2. Filing of the information. - An (b) When an offense has just been
information, charging a person with a committed, and he has probable
cause to believe based on personal instruments of the crime. The court
knowledge of facts or circumstances shall, after hearing, fix the minimum
that the person to be arrested has bid price based on the
committed it. Individuals deputized recommendation of the concerned
by the proper government agency government agency. The sheriff
who are enforcing environmental shall conduct the auction.
laws shall enjoy the presumption of
regularity under Section 3(m), Rule (d) The auction sale shall be with
131 of the Rules of Court when notice to the accused, the person
effecting arrests for violations of from whom the items were seized, or
environmental laws. the owner thereof and the concerned
government agency.
Section 2. Warrant of arrest. - All warrants
of arrest issued by the court shall be (e) The notice of auction shall be
accompanied by a certified true copy of the posted in three conspicuous places
information filed with the issuing court. in the city or municipality where the
items, equipment, paraphernalia,
RULE 12 tools or instruments of the crime
PARAPHERNALIA, CONVEYANCES AND (f) The proceeds shall be held in
INSTRUMENTS trust and deposited with the
government depository bank for
Section 1. Custody and disposition of disposition according to the
seized items. - The custody and disposition judgment.
of seized items shall be in accordance with
the applicable laws or rules promulgated by RULE 13
the concerned government agency. PROVISIONAL REMEDIES

Section 2. Procedure. - In the absence of Section 1. Attachment in environmental

applicable laws or rules promulgated by the cases. - The provisional remedy of
concerned government agency, the attachment under Rule 127 of the Rules of
following procedure shall be observed: Court may be availed of in environmental
(a) The apprehending officer having
initial custody and control of the Section 2. Environmental Protection Order
seized items, equipment, (EPO); Temporary Environmental Protection
paraphernalia, conveyances and Order (TEPO) in criminal cases. - The
instruments shall physically procedure for and issuance of EPO and
inventory and whenever practicable, TEPO shall be governed by Rule 2 of these
photograph the same in the Rules.
presence of the person from whom
such items were seized. RULE 14
(b) Thereafter, the apprehending
officer shall submit to the issuing Section 1. Bail, where filed. - Bail in the
court the return of the search amount fixed may be filed with the court
warrant within five (5) days from where the case is pending, or in the
date of seizure or in case of absence or unavailability of the judge
warrantless arrest, submit within five thereof, with any regional trial judge,
(5) days from date of seizure, the metropolitan trial judge, municipal trial judge
inventory report, compliance report, or municipal circuit trial judge in the
photographs, representative province, city or municipality. If the accused
samples and other pertinent is arrested in a province, city or municipality
documents to the public prosecutor other than where the case is pending, bail
for appropriate action. may also be filed with any Regional Trial
Court of said place, or if no judge thereof is
(c) Upon motion by any interested available, with any metropolitan trial judge,
party, the court may direct the municipal trial judge or municipal circuit trial
auction sale of seized items, judge therein. If the court grants bail, the
equipment, paraphernalia, tools or
court may issue a hold-departure order in (c) Render and promulgate judgment
appropriate cases. of conviction, including the civil
liability for damages.
Section 2. Duties of the court. - Before
granting the application for bail, the judge RULE 16
must read the information in a language PRE-TRIAL
known to and understood by the accused
and require the accused to sign a written Section 1. Setting of pre-trial conference. -
undertaking, as follows: After the arraignment, the court shall set the
pre-trial conference within thirty (30) days. It
(a) To appear before the court that may refer the case to the branch clerk of
issued the warrant of arrest for court, if warranted, for a preliminary
arraignment purposes on the date conference to be set at least three (3) days
scheduled, and if the accused fails prior to the pre-trial.
to appear without justification on the
date of arraignment, accused waives Section 2. Preliminary conference. - The
the reading of the information and preliminary conference shall be for the
authorizes the court to enter a plea following purposes:
of not guilty on behalf of the accused
and to set the case for trial; (a) To assist the parties in reaching
a settlement of the civil aspect of the
(b) To appear whenever required by case;
the court where the case is pending;
and (b) To mark the documents to be
presented as exhibits;
(c) To waive the right of the accused
to be present at the trial, and upon (c) To attach copies thereof to the
failure of the accused to appear records after comparison with the
without justification and despite due originals;
notice, the trial may proceed in
absentia. (d) To ascertain from the parties the
undisputed facts and admissions on
RULE 15 the genuineness and due execution
ARRAIGNMENT AND PLEA of documents marked as exhibits;

Section 1. Arraignment. - The court shall (e) To consider such other matters
set the arraignment of the accused within as may aid in the prompt disposition
fifteen (15) days from the time it acquires of the case;
jurisdiction over the accused, with notice to
the public prosecutor and offended party or (f) To record the proceedings during
concerned government agency that it will the preliminary conference in the
entertain plea-bargaining on the date of the Minutes of Preliminary Conference
arraignment. to be signed by the parties and
Section 2. Plea-bargaining. - On the
scheduled date of arraignment, the court (g) To mark the affidavits of
shall consider plea-bargaining witnesses which shall be in question
arrangements. Where the prosecution and and answer form and shall constitute
offended party or concerned government the direct examination of the
agency agree to the plea offered by the witnesses; and
accused, the court shall:
(h) To attach the Minutes and
(a) Issue an order which contains marked exhibits to the case record
the plea-bargaining arrived at; before the pre-trial proper. The
parties or their counsel must submit
(b) Proceed to receive evidence on to the branch clerk of court the
the civil aspect of the case, if any; names, addresses and contact
and numbers of the affiants.

Section 3. Pre-trial duty of the judge. -

During the pre-trial, the court shall:
(a) Place the parties and their in Section 1, Rule 118 of the Rules of Court
counsels under oath; shall be approved by the court.

(b) Adopt the minutes of the Section 6. Record of proceedings. - All

preliminary conference as part of the proceedings during the pre-trial shall be
pre-trial proceedings, confirm recorded, the transcripts prepared and the
markings of exhibits or substituted minutes signed by the parties or their
photocopies and admissions on the counsels.
genuineness and due execution of
documents, and list object and Section 7. Pre-trial order. - The court shall
testimonial evidence; issue a pre-trial order within ten (10) days
after the termination of the pre-trial, setting
(c) Scrutinize the information and the forth the actions taken during the pre-trial
statements in the affidavits and other conference, the facts stipulated, the
documents which form part of the admissions made, evidence marked, the
record of the preliminary number of witnesses to be presented and
investigation together with other the schedule of trial. The order shall bind
documents identified and marked as the parties and control the course of action
exhibits to determine further during the trial.
admissions of facts as to:
i. The court’s territorial TRIAL
jurisdiction relative to the
offense(s) charged; Section 1. Continuous trial. - The court
shall endeavor to conduct continuous trial
ii. Qualification of expert which shall not exceed three (3) months
witnesses; and from the date of the issuance of the pre-trial
iii. Amount of damages;
Section 2. Affidavit in lieu of direct
(d) Define factual and legal issues; examination. - Affidavit in lieu of direct
examination shall be used, subject to cross-
(e) Ask parties to agree on the examination and the right to object to
specific trial dates and adhere to the inadmissible portions of the affidavit.
flow chart determined by the court
which shall contain the time frames Section 3. Submission of memoranda. -
for the different stages of the The court may require the parties to submit
proceeding up to promulgation of their respective memoranda and if possible,
decision; in electronic form, within a non-extendible
period of thirty (30) days from the date the
(f) Require the parties to submit to case is submitted for decision.
the branch clerk of court the names,
addresses and contact numbers of With or without any memoranda filed, the
witnesses that need to be court shall have a period of sixty (60) days
summoned by subpoena; and to decide the case counted from the last day
of the 30-day period to file the memoranda.
(g) Consider modification of order of
trial if the accused admits the charge Section 4. Disposition period. - The court
but interposes a lawful defense. shall dispose the case within a period of ten
(10) months from the date of arraignment.
Section 4. Manner of questioning. - All
questions or statements must be directed to Section 5. Pro bono lawyers. - If the
the court. accused cannot afford the services of
counsel or there is no available public
Section 5. Agreements or admissions. - All attorney, the court shall require the
agreements or admissions made or entered Integrated Bar of the Philippines to provide
during the pre-trial conference shall be pro bono lawyers for the accused.
reduced in writing and signed by the
accused and counsel; otherwise, they RULE 18
cannot be used against the accused. The SUBSIDIARY LIABILITY
agreements covering the matters referred to
Section 1. Subsidiary liability. - In case of The constitutional right of the people to a
conviction of the accused and subsidiary balanced and healthful ecology shall be
liability is allowed by law, the court may, by given the benefit of the doubt.
motion of the person entitled to recover
under judgment, enforce such subsidiary Section 2. Standards for application. - In
liability against a person or corporation applying the precautionary principle, the
subsidiary liable under Article 102 and following factors, among others, may be
Article 103 of the Revised Penal Code. considered: (1) threats to human life or
health; (2) inequity to present or future
RULE 19 generations; or (3) prejudice to the
STRATEGIC LAWSUIT AGAINST PUBLIC environment without legal consideration of
PARTICIPATION IN CRIMINAL CASES the environmental rights of those affected.

Section 1. Motion to dismiss. - Upon the RULE 21

filing of an information in court and before DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE
arraignment, the accused may file a motion
to dismiss on the ground that the criminal Section 1. Photographic, video and similar
action is a SLAPP. evidence. - Photographs, videos and similar
evidence of events, acts, transactions of
Section 2. Summary hearing. - The hearing wildlife, wildlife by-products or derivatives,
on the defense of a SLAPP shall be forest products or mineral resources subject
summary in nature. The parties must submit of a case shall be admissible when
all the available evidence in support of their authenticated by the person who took the
respective positions. The party seeking the same, by some other person present when
dismissal of the case must prove by said evidence was taken, or by any other
substantial evidence that his acts for the person competent to testify on the accuracy
enforcement of environmental law is a thereof.
legitimate action for the protection,
preservation and rehabilitation of the Section 2. Entries in official records. -
environment. The party filing the action Entries in official records made in the
assailed as a SLAPP shall prove by performance of his duty by a public officer of
preponderance of evidence that the action the Philippines, or by a person in
is not a SLAPP. performance of a duty specially enjoined by
law, are prima facie evidence of the facts
Section 3. Resolution. - The court shall therein stated.
grant the motion if the accused establishes
in the summary hearing that the criminal RULE 22
case has been filed with intent to harass, FINAL PROVISIONS
vex, exert undue pressure or stifle any legal
recourse that any person, institution or the Section 1. Effectivity. - These Rules shall
government has taken or may take in the take effect within fifteen (15) days following
enforcement of environmental laws, publication once in a newspaper of general
protection of the environment or assertion of circulation.
environmental rights.
Section 2. Application of the Rules of
If the court denies the motion, the court Court. - The Rules of Court shall apply in a
shall immediately proceed with the suppletory manner, except as otherwise
arraignment of the accused. provided herein.

Section 1. Applicability. - When there is a
lack of full scientific certainty in establishing Members
a causal link between human activity and
environmental effect, the court shall apply JUSTICE PRESBITERO J. VELASCO, JR.
the precautionary principle in resolving the








Asst. Secretary