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.

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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.

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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).

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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.

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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.

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