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.

The CCAM-DRR Cabinet Cluster is a cross-departmental body, composed of 20 government agencies as members under Executive Order No. 24, which serves as a venue to harmonize, align, complement, and synergize the programs, activities, and projects (PAPs) among departments and other government agencies in delivering the national vision on climate change adaptation, mitigation, and disaster risk reduction.

According to Cimatu, the over-all goal of the CCAM-DRR Roadmap is “to attain the climate and disaster-resilient communities supporting equitable and sustainable development.”

The roadmap has four outcome objectives namely: (1) increasing adaptive capacities of vulnerable communities; (2) ensuring adequate supply of clean air; (3) increased resilience of critical infrastructure; (4) enhanced knowledge, access to information, and institutional capacities.

Enhancing the climate and disaster-resilient communities in 22 vulnerable provinces, 822 coastal municipalities, and the major urban centers (Metro Manila, Cebu, Iloilo and Davao) is the over-all goal of the roadmap by 2022.

Lawyer Analiza Rebuelta-Teh, DENR’s Undersecretary for Climate Change and Mining Concerns, said that a formal resolution to adopt the roadmap was issued January this year.

One of the strategies for implementing the roadmap is through the Risk Resiliency Program (RRP). “The RRP is the framework program to assist the Philippines in strengthening the resiliency of natural ecosystems and the adaptive capacity of vulnerable communities to short and long-term risks,” Teh said.

The criteria for selecting the first priority geographical areas of focus were based on “high poverty incidence, high susceptibility or exposure to hazards, and provinces’ location in critical or degraded watersheds.”

For this year, the CCAM-DRR Cabinet Cluster agencies are continuing the 2018 PAPs under each outcome category. The RRP, on the other hand, will focus on eight provinces for 2019, including Western Samar, Negros Oriental, Saranggani, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Dinagat, Sorsogon, and Masbate.

“The RRP also aims to contribute to the attainment of the Philippine Development Plan goal of inclusive growth by minimizing the impacts of climate and disaster risks,” Teh concluded. ###