CCC boosts Palawan LGUs’ capacity to combat climate change  

September 19, 2023, 10:59 pm Updated on September 21, 2023, 5:46 pm

PUERTO PRINCESA, Palawan – The Climate Change Commission (CCC) has conducted a series of capacity-building activities here to strengthen the province’s Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP) and facilitate access to the People's Survival Fund (PSF).

The recent training workshop on Enhanced Local Climate Change Action Plan (eLCCAP) provided a comprehensive understanding of the key components of the LCCAP and knowledge about developing science-based and risk-informed plans.

Among the topics discussed were understanding climate projections and Climate Extremes Risk Analysis Matrix, an introduction to the eLCCAP formulation process, climate and disaster risk assessment (CDRA) procedures and an overview of community-level greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory and data requirements.

The methodologies for estimating GHG emissions across sectors, a walk-through of the GHG Inventory (GHGI) Toolkit, climate change expenditure tagging, and the PSF process were also tackled during the training workshop. 

A total of 78 representatives of 23 local government units (LGUs) participated in the training workshop, representing various offices, such as the Planning and Development Office, Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, Agriculture Office, Environment and Natural Resource Office, as well as members of the Philippine Institute of Environmental Planners (PIEP) Palawan Chapter. 

“We recognize the vital role of LGUs in adaptation and climate resilience. Through these capacity-building activities, we aim to enhance the capacity of our LGUs to access and utilize the PSF in initiatives that will help their communities become more resilient to the impacts of climate change," CCC Vice Chairperson and Executive Director Robert E.A. Borje said in a news release on Tuesday.

He said the CCC remains steadfast in providing the necessary support and resources to strengthen the capabilities of LGUs throughout the country. 

This commitment includes the continuous provision of capacity-building programs focused on CDRA, GHGI, and PSF proposal development, as well as establishing a contact group mechanism between CCC, LGUs, the provincial government of Palawan, and PIEP-Palawan to monitor the progress of LGUs' eLCCAP development. 

“We will continue working closely with the province of Palawan, along with other LGUs in the country, to ensure the successful implementation of the eLCCAP and further enhance resilience against climate change impacts,” Borje said.

The LCCAP serves as a roadmap for local-level climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts, outlining specific actions and measures tailored to the unique needs and vulnerabilities of each locality.

The submission of the LCCAP is a key deliverable mandated by Republic Act 9729, or the Climate Change Act, and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Memorandum Circular 2021-068.

As of Aug. 23, about 85.95 percent or 1,474 out of 1,715 LGUs across the country have successfully submitted their LCCAPs to the CCC with Palawan achieving a 100 percent compliance rate.

The CCC is actively collaborating with the DILG-Local Government Agency and other relevant partners to equip LGUs and other stakeholders with the knowledge and skills required to develop effective climate action plans and implement climate adaptation and mitigation measures.

Aside from LGUs, a total of 167 state universities and colleges and higher education institutions have also gained from the CCC’s activities.

Student’s active role

Meanwhile, CCC Commissioner Rachel Anne S. Herrera encouraged students of the Philippine Science High School - Southern Mindanao Campus’s (PSHS-SMC) to take an active role in addressing the critical issue of climate change.

In her address during the PSHS-SMS 35th Recognition Day Program on Sept. 18, Herrera highlighted the urgency of addressing the climate crisis, citing the record-breaking heat record in July 2023, recognized by the World Meteorological Organization as the hottest month ever recorded.

CCC Commissioner Rachel Anne S. Herrera with the students of Philippine Science High School - Southern Mindanao Campus

She echoed the words of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, saying that "the era of global warming has ended, and the era of global boiling has begun."

She said vulnerable communities, including youth, children, and women, are disproportionately affected by climate change, with severe floods, droughts, and temperature increases wreaking havoc on lives and livelihoods.

Herrera emphasized the transformative power of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) in addressing the pressing challenges facing the nation and the world, including climate change.

She urged the students to recognize their significant role in climate action, noting that climate change is a challenge that “we are already facing and must be addressed head-on.”

Herrera, an esteemed alumna of PSHS-SMC, also encouraged students not only to engage in discussions about climate change within the classroom, but also to actively participate in decision-making processes within their school organizations and local and national government bodies to drive climate action.

“You are not just the future, you are the present. Start small if you must, but create a ripple effect through your contributions. Reshape the world through science. Embrace your role as Earth’s stewards,” she said. (PR)