• Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu has assured that there will be no letup in the fight against climate change and disaster risks as building resilient communities remains a top priority for the government.

    “Sa mga darating na araw at buwan, patuloy nating palalakasin ang ating mga programa at polisiya. Patuloy nating titiyakin ang katatagan ng kinabukasan ng ating bansa,” Cimatu said during the pre-State of the Nation Address (SONA) Forum held in Davao City on July 17.

    The forum came five days before President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his fourth SONA on July 22.

    As a way forward, Cimatu said the Duterte administration will continue to pursue policy reforms that integrate climate and disaster risk considerations into development policies, strategies, plans and programs.

    Cimatu said the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will continue to coordinate closely with other line agencies under the Cabinet Cluster on  Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Disaster Risk Reduction (CCAM-DRR) to ensure that they work together toward the goal of establishing adaptive and resilient communities.

    The DENR chief co-chairs the cluster with Defense Secretary DelfinLorenzana, while the Climate Change Commission acts as the cluster secretariat. The members include the Executive Secretary, the Cabinet Secretary, and the heads of the Presidential Management Staff, the Department of Budget and Management, the National Economic and Development Authority, the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), the Department of Finance, and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

    Other members are the secretaries of the Department of the Interior and Local Government, the Department of Public Works and Highways, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Agrarian Reform and the Department of Energy (DOE), the chairpersons of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority and the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, and the heads of the Presidential Legislative Liaison Office, Presidential Communications Operations Office, National Security Council, and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

    Cimatu said the Cabinet cluster supports the creation of the Department of Disaster Resilience and other legislative proposals that promote disaster and climate resilience, such as the proposed National Land Use Act, Land Administration Reform Act, Integrated Coastal Management Act, and National Building Code of the Philippines.

    “With the help of Congress, we intend to adopt a national land use policy that will optimize balanced development,” Cimatu said. “We hope to achieve this through rational and just allocation, utilization, management and development of our country’s land resources under the proposed National Land Use Act.”

    This policy, he said, will be complemented by the planned delineation of forest limits, which would enable the DENR to sustainably manage, conserve and protect the country’s remaining forests from further depletion.

    Meanwhile, Cimatu said the proposed Land Administration Act seeks to improve the land sector as a driver to sustainable development, economic growth and poverty alleviation.

    “Hindi lamang pangangalaga sa kalikasan ang pakay natin,” Cimatu explained. “Misyon din natin na mapakinabangan ng mamamayan ang likas na yaman sa mas mahabang panahon para lalo pang mapabuti ang kalagayan nila sa buhay.”

    Cimatu said the cluster will work for the swift enactment of the Integrated Coastal Management Act, which would ensure optimum and sustainable resource utilization of coastal and marine environment.

    He said the establishment of a department devoted to disaster resilience is necessary to help the government manage broader climate-disaster governance arrangements, and oversee the implementation of disaster risk and vulnerability reduction and management.

    The cluster, according to Cimatu, also supports proposal to prohibit the conversion of irrigated lands as it would address the threats to the country’s food security.

    He said that crucial to the government’s strategy was the proposed National Building Code of the Philippines, which aims to provide a framework for minimum standards and requirements for all buildings and structures so that government can regulate and control their location, site, construction, use, occupancy and maintenance.

    At the same time, Cimatu said the government will provide the ability to generate, synthesize and disseminate knowledge, methodologies and decision-making tools to ensure climate resilience.

    To cite an example, Cimatu said the DOST commits the installation of more than a dozen doppler weather radars and high frequency doppler radar networks in various parts of the country.

    The DOST, he added, is also set to install several flood forecasting and warning systems in major river basins, a borehole seismic station in Kanlaon Volcano in Negros Island, and a probabilistic seismic hazard analysis in Metro Davao.

    On the other hand, the DICT will implement programs on communications technology to prepare the communities and local government units in case of disasters.

    “Lahat po ito ay gagawin natin para mabigyan ng panahon ang ating mga kababayan na lumikas bago pa man dumatingangbagyo,” Cimatu said.

    “Sisiguruhinnatinnawalangpamilyang Pilipino angnasapeligrosapanahon ng kalamidad,” he added.

    Cimatu also revealed that the DOE will intensify development of renewable energy in off-grid areas for wider access of populace.

    The government will continue to mainstream the use of alternative fuels and energy technology in the transport sector, as well as monitor the implementation of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act, Cimatu said.

    To ensure quick restoration of energy services during and after calamities, Cimatu said the government will strengthen energy systems and facilities through the energy resiliency program.

    He also said that the government will provide financial assistance for disaster mitigation, preparedness and rehabilitation of damaged electric cooperatives. #

  • Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu rallied support from his fellow Cabinet members for the ongoing rehabilitation of Manila Bay and Boracay Island as ordered by no less than President Rodrigo RoaDuterte.

    “With your cooperation and support, we will win in the twin battles to save our natural resources: saving Boracay, and our national heritage, Manila Bay,” Cimatu told his colleagues during the joint forum of the Cabinet Clusters on Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Disaster Risk Reduction (CCAM-DRR),and Security, Justice and Peace in Davao City prior to the President’s State of the Nation Address.

    Cimatu chairs the Cabinet Cluster on CCAM-DRR, being the secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

    Cimatu thanked those who are taking part in the so-called “Battle for Manila Bay” which have so far gathered over 10,000 volunteers since the massive clean up drive was launched in January this year.

    The rehabilitation efforts for Manila Bay has gained support from 178 local government units and 5,714 barangays around the bay.

    In addition, the private sector has joined the efforts with the signing of partnerships with 32 firms for the adoption of esteros and creeks that drain to the bay. The companies provide dredging equipment and cleaning materials, conduct training and information campaigns and mobilize communities for the clean up of the bay.

    However, Cimatu said the bay’s current state “is still far from our dream to make it clean and swimmable.”

    “The Battle for Manila Bay is a long-drawn battle that we can only win with deep commitment and tremendous work,” Cimatu pointed out.

    Cimatu, who also chairs the inter-agency Manila Bay Task Force, promised to address garbage collection and management, especially in the esteros, with Chairman Danilo Lim of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority as ground commander.

    He said the task force plans to construct communal facilities and rehabilitate the breakwater along the mouth of Pasig River and Manila Bay, particularly the one near the Port Area.

    Recently, 198 informal settler families (ISFs) from Estero de Magdalena in Malate, Manila were relocated to TreceMartires in Cavite while 50 ISFs from Estero de San Antonio de Abad, also in Manila, were transferred to Tala, Caloocan City.

    Informal settlements usually lack sewage facilities forcing ISFs to dispose human waste directly to the esteros which is among the causes of poor water quality in the bay. Relocation is one component of the Manila Bay rehabilitation.

    Cimatu said they plan to adopt a two-pronged approach in the restoration of the Baywalk along Roxas Boulevard: coastal and marine ecosystems enhancement; and establishment of wastewater treatment facilities, drainage diversion canal and modular sewerage treatment plants.

    As for the Boracay rehabilitation, Cimatu said it is far from over as the DENR-led inter-agency task force “will soldier on to complete our mission.”

    “Hindi pa tayotapossapagsasagipsa Boracay at iba pang nanganganibna tourist destinations,” the DENR chief declared.

    Together with Secretary Eduardo Año of the Department of the Interior and Local Government, Cimatu said he will go after violators, including erring local government officials and establishments.


    “We have filed charges and we are ready to file more cases in court,” Cimatu said.


    With the help from Secretary Mark Villar of the Department of Public Works and Highways, Cimatu said they will put in place all infrastructure needed to bring Boracay back on top of the world’s prime tourist destinations.


    Cimatu said the Boracaytask forceand the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples are set to rehabilitate the Ati Core Shelter in SitioLugutan, Barangay Manoc-Manoc for the benefit of the Ati communities.

    “More programs will be implemented to promote business and livelihood in Boracay,” Cimatu disclosed.

    “Our partners in the private sector have also committed to continue as protectors of the island,” he added. ###

  • Some 42 barangays will converge for the massive simultaneousTullahan-Tinajeros River System  clean up on March 31, 2019 in support to the Battle for  Manila Bay being spearheaded by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). Captains in these 42 barangays in Quezon City, Caloocan, Valenzuela City, Malabon City and Navotas City are also set to ink memoranda of agreement with the DENR, dubbed as Kasunduan. The agreement underscores the barangays’ commitment to help improve water quality, proper management of solid wastes, including the promotion of waste reduction, reuse and recycling, partnership in community mobilization, and in information and education campaigns for water quality and solid waste management, habitat restoration, climate and disaster resiliency.

    Simultaneous river, creek, estero and waterwaysclean up will be conducted by all barangays covering the Tullahan-Tinajeros river system including private sector partners and other national government agencies supporting the rehabilitation of these creeks.

    DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said that the rehabilitation of this very important river system will positively affect efforts to clean up Manila Bay.

    “These creeks are key tributaries that discharge their wastes to Manila Bay. By ensuring that wastes from both Tullahan and Tinajeros Rivers, and their creeks  are addressed, we can expect significant improvement in theBay’s water quality,” Cimatu said.

  •  

    Environment and Natural Secretary Roy Cimatu, as Chair of the Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Disaster Risk Reduction (CCAM DRR), will lead the resiliency planning and convergence budgeting for the eight priority climate vulnerable provinces in a high-level meeting at the DENR Central Office, Visayas Avenue, Quezon City on February 7, 2019.

    The meeting is set to be with Governors of the eight climate vulnerable provinces and the national government agencies namely Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Agriculture (DA), and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

    The meeting is intended to discuss the climate vulnerabilities is the aforesaid provinces, and reinforce government’s push for a more prudent and targeted spending by fostering collaboration among agencies in planning, budgeting and implementing priority resilience programs and projects in the said provinces.

    The eight priority provinces namely Masbate, Sorsogon, Negros Oriental, Samar, Sarangani, Surigaodel Sur, Surigao del Norte, and Dinagat Islands are vulnerable based on their high susceptibility to climate hazards (flooding, rainfall-induced landslide, storm surge, strong winds due to typhoon, typhoons and drought), high poverty incidence as of 2015 data, and are situated in critical watersheds.

    The Cabinet Cluster CCAM-DRR Roadmap for 2018 to 2022 aims to establish climate- and disaster-resilient communities. By the year 2022, the CCAM DRR Cabinet Cluster anticipates the enhancement of climate- and disaster-resilient communities in the 17 climate vulnerable provinces, and major urban centers (Metro Manila, Cebu, Iloilo & Davao).

    The aforecited concerned national government agencies, with the provincial governments are actively taking part in ensuring the achievement of these goals. The proposed Risk Resiliency Program key investment projects for 2020 are in the areas of: community livelihood and enterprise continuity; integrated water resources management; enhancing coastal protection; and climate information services.###

  • k5 news

     

    The said Search, which was launched in  the November 2017 climate consciousness week celebration,  is spearheaded by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources’  (DENR) Climate Change Service and Environmental Management Bureau, with the Department of Interior and Local Government-National Capital Region, and assisted by the  Office of Civil Defense-National Capital Region,  Metro Manila Development Authority, and DOST-PAGASA.

    Dr. Emmanuel M. Luna of the University of the Philippines’ College of Social Work and Community Development presented some of the potential climate change impacts on health, agriculture, forests as well as protected areas. He also gave the characteristics of disaster-resilient communities which are capacity to anticipate, capacity to manage, and capacity to recover.

    Also gracing the event was Ms. Jacqueline A. Caancan, Regional Executive Director of the DENR National Capital Region. In her message, she mentioned why it is important to give communities the opportunity to showcase their good practices in climate and disaster resiliency. "Metro Manila is often prone to extreme weather events such as typhoons, heavy rains and floods. These are just some of the challenges we need to face today and in the future", she said.

    Atty. Analiza R. Teh, DENR Undersecretary for Climate Change and Mining Concerns explained the aim of the K5 Search. "We want to identify and feature the good practices of communities, and hopefully encourage others to do the same. Extreme weather events and disaster risks are major challenges in the Philippines. That is why we need to empower our communities to be more resilient and adaptive".

    The following barangays were declared as major prize winners:

    1st Prize: Brgy. 31, Southside, Makati City

    2nd Prize: Brgy. San Isidro, Parañaque

    3rd Prize: Brgy. San Jose, Pasig City

    Meanwhile, the following barangays were declared as consolation prize winners:

    Barangays 121, 170, and 178, Caloocan City

    Brgy. ArkongBato, Valenzuela

    Brgy. Potrero, Malabon

    Barangays Batasan Hills and Commonwealth, Quezon City

    Some of the winning innovations and good practices of these barangays include the establishment of a Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) Unit, installation of CCTV cameras and sirens, conduct of drills, seminars and trainings on DRRM, regular cleanup drives, mobilization of different barangay organizations, greening programs, proper solid waste management, maintenance of Materials Recovery Facilities, and updating of flood markers and hazard maps, among others.

    Ms. Elenida Basug, OIC-Director of the DENR Climate Change Service and concurrent Chief of the EMB's Environmental Education and Information Division, commended the winning barangays for all their efforts and initiatives, which can help in addressing current "climate chaos". She also mentioned the 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels as the target maximum increase in global temperature, as set by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Hence, resiliency coupled with positive action is needed. "We hope we can fast track replicating all of your programs on a national scale, so that together we can be resilient and prepared for the negative effects of climate change and disaster risks," Ms. Basug said.

    The Seminar-cum- Awarding Ceremony for the Metro Manila Search for Climate-and Disaster-Resilient Communities is a part of the celebration of November 2018 as the National Environmental Awareness Month, with the theme, "Greening the Future: 10 Years of Enhancing Education for a Healthier Environment and Safer Climate,” and November 19-25, 2018 as the National Climate Change Consciousness Week, with the theme, “The 1.5 degrees Celsius Climate Challenge: Survive and Thrive Together.” ###

  • The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is hoping to expand nationwide a highly acclaimed forest and climate change protection project, which resulted in the sustainable management of resources in areas surrounding a mountain range on Panay Island.

    According to DENR Secretary Roy A. Cimatu, the recently completed Forest and Climate Protection Panay Project (ForClim)—an eight-year initiative funded and implemented by the German and Philippine governments—is worth replicating in other parts of the country.

    “ForClim has proved successful in integrating biodiversity conservation, climate change mitigation and poverty alleviation through sustainable management of forest resources. With the right support from our partner organizations, hopefully we can bring this kind of success to other areas in the country in the near future,” Cimatu said.

    Cimatu issued the statement after the implementation of ForClim’s second phase was finally completed this year. A simple closing ceremony held recently at the DENR central office was led by DENR Undersecretary for Policy, Planning and International Affairs Jonas Leones and Cimatu’s chief of staff Undersecretary Rodolfo Garcia.

    (Read More)

  • The Philippines remains fully committed to sustainable coastal development as it continues to support regional effort towards the sustainable use of coastal and marine ecosystems, according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

    The DENR said the country is a committed partner of the Partnerships in Environmental Management for the Seas of East Asia (PEMSEA), an intergovernmental organization working to foster and sustain healthy and resilient oceans, coasts, communities and economies across the region.

    DENR Undersecretary for Climate Change and Mining Concerns Analiza Rebuelta Teh, who is the PEMSEA national focal point, said the country’s affiliation with the regional organization has led to the successful adaption and implementation of the Integrated Coastal Management (ICM) program under Executive Order (EO) 533.

    (Read More)

  • A few days before President Rodrigo Duterte delivers his third State of the Nation Address (SONA), Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said the current administration will continue to take decisive steps to protect citizens from the threats posed by climate change and natural disasters.

    “There will be no let-up in the fight against climate change and disaster risks as the government will do everything to protect the public from their immediate threats,” Cimatu said.

    The environment chief issued the statement as he revealed the four-point agenda formulated and being implemented by the Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation, and Disaster Risk Reduction (CCAM-DRR), chaired by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

    (Read More)

  • Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu, the chair of the Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation, and Disaster Risk Reduction (CCAM-DRR), has turned over to President Rodrigo Roa-Duterte, its plan for climate change adaptation, mitigation and disaster risk reduction for the next four years.

    Cimatu said that the roadmap “will serve as an important guide for helping the country lessen the impacts of climate change and disaster risks.”

    The turnover of the CCAM-DRR Roadmap to President Duterte is part of the overall plan for the five other cabinet clusters as follows, to turn over their respective roadmaps to the country’s chief executive: Participatory Governance; Infrastructure; Human Development and Poverty Reduction; Security, Justice, and Peace; and Economic Development.

    (Read More)

  • National focal points of the ASEAN Working Group on Climate Change (AWGCC) are set to meet in the Philippines for the ASEAN Climate Change Partnership Forum 2018 on June 26, 2018, and the 9th Meeting of the AWGCC on June 28-29, 2018, all to be held at the Asian Development Bank.

    Also joining the forum are chairs of relevant sectoral bodies and relevant dialogue partners, and external parties who will discuss priority activities on climate change actions, explore possible cooperation or collaboration and exchange information on flagship programs in the region.

    DENR Undersecretary for Climate Change, Atty. Analiza Rebuelta-Teh sees the multi-stakeholder forum as an urgent call for ASEAN partners to take concrete actions in tackling climate change.

    (Read More)