Press Releases

The Philippines has been elected as chair of the eighth session of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction held at the United Nations Conference Centre in Bangkok, Thailand from July 25 to 27.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Chief of Staff and Undersecretary for Strategic Communications Marilou G. Erni, designated head of the Philippine delegation, was elected by delegates from other member states to chair the committee sessions.

“A riskscape of complex, compound and cascading disasters is emerging. Forecasts are for risks in existing disaster hotspots to intensify and for new disaster hotspots to appear. There is an urgent need to strengthen disaster resilience particularly through enhancing early warning systems, in Asia and the Pacific,” said Erni at the opening session on July 25.

The sessions aimed to promote economic and social development through regional and subregional cooperation and integration by discussing the following agenda: targeting transformative adaptation; building resilience to compounding and cascading risks and highlighting the Midterm Review of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (2015-2030); regional plan of action to achieve early warning for all by 2027 in Asia and the Pacific; and status of regional cooperation efforts.

Erni also served as panelist on the session on transformative adaptation. She delivered the national statement of the Philippines on key emerging outcomes expected from the Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (APMCDRR) in 2024, which the Philippines will be hosting in October this year.

“At the APMCDRR in 2024, we will put a spotlight on the private sector, and advocate for their full engagement in disaster risk reduction,” Erni said. “The private sector has shifted to implementing disaster risk reduction with a development framework and whole-of-society approach, and with resilience as a goal.”

She added that the private sector has been working closely with the Philippine government in natural resource management, energy efficiency and transition to renewable energy, support for resilient infrastructure, and access to health services.

Through the DENR’s support, the private sector has also been aligning their respective environment, social and governance (ESG) targets and investments with local priorities and targets on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. They have also begun integrating resilience into ESG investing.

The Philippines, Erni added, is also one with the global community in calling for accelerating actions towards the implementation of the Sendai Framework.

“We reiterate the call for concrete actions that will address risk with a fundamental shift towards an all-hazards, whole-of-society, anticipatory, integrated approach to climate and disaster risk governance, and transformative adaptation across the Asia Pacific region,” she said.

The Philippine delegation was composed of officials from the DENR, Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, Department of Social Welfare and Development, and the Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in Thailand. ##

As experts warn of increasing disaster risk in the Asia Pacific region, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) highlighted the importance of international cooperation and collaboration to build resilience. This comes as the Philippines prepares to host the 2024 Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (APMCDRR) in October next year.

The DENR, together with the Department of National Defense are leading preparations for the Asia-Pacific region’s largest biennial conference on disaster risk reduction. It serves as the region’s primary platform for promoting coordination, cooperation, and accelerating the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

“Science and technology are at the core of the disaster risk reduction. The learning shared during this conference will have an impact on our own knowledge base and enhance the Philippines’ disaster risk reduction and climate change mitigation initiatives,” said Environment Secretary Maria Antonia Yulo Loyzaga.

A report from the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) published last July flagged the risk of a ‘disaster emergency’ in the Asia-Pacific as rising temperatures continue to trigger more severe weather and climate conditions, unless there is immediate, fundamental action to build resilience. Moreover, while the Philippines has made significant progress in the areas of environmental protection, disaster risk reduction, and climate action, the country remains on top of the World Risk Index, and one of the top countries most vulnerable to hazards and the impacts of climate change.

To be held in Manila from October 14-17, 2024, the 2024 Asia Pacific Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction is expected to draw over 3,000 high-level delegates from various United Nations member-states.

Environment Secretary Antonia Loyzaga urged mining companies to empower women to lead and provide a platform that can harness their unique perspectives, knowledge and skills. In her address before non-government organization Diwata (Women in Resource Development), Loyzaga said women are typically characterized as the most vulnerable to changes, and their multiple social roles can even lead to the intersectionality of their vulnerabilities.

“Mining companies are urged to enhance women participation in their conservation and restoration projects, acknowledging the indigenous women’s and other women’s invaluable knowledge of local ecosystems. The mining industry can mainstream gender-responsive policies in their corporate strategies, not only to ensure that practices do not inadvertently harm women, but that they also build corporate resilience,” Loyzaga said.

Diwata advocates for the responsible development of the Philippines’ natural resources, principally extractive industries such as mining, oil and gas quarrying.

Loyzaga said gender-responsive approaches to community assessments, consultation and benefit-sharing are all vital to increase the success of the mining industry’s climate mitigation and adaptation strategies.

“Let us harness our collective powers and unlock our potential and continue to chart the future of the Philippine mining industry where women stand shoulder to shoulder with men,” she added.

Loyzaga further stated that it is crucial to safeguard the rights of women in crafting environmental policies, social development and in decision-making through their inclusion in national and local level discourse on mining, climate, human security, and the environment.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources, under the leadership of Loyzaga, has been working closely with stakeholders in the environment sector to advance the promotion of gender equality in the workplace. ##

Philippines reiterates commitment to protect 30% of the planet’s land and oceans by 2030 --

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), through the Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB), spearheaded the first national multi-stakeholder consultation workshop to map-out initiatives and other policy measures that must be taken for the Philippines to meet its commitment to the 30x30 global conservation pledge. 30x30 is a global initiative to protect at least 30% of the planet’s lands and water ecosystems by 2030.

Over 190 countries have pledged to the 30x30 target and are expected to contribute to this global goal through domestic action to ramp-up land and marine conservation, prioritize species facing extinction, increase coverage of effectively managed protected areas, and protect natural ecosystem services such as freshwater availability. The 30% conservation goal was determined by experts as a level that gives the planet a chance to recover and protect millions of species from extinction.

While the DENR takes the lead in advancing the biodiversity framework implementation in the country, the consultation brought together over 100 representatives from government agencies, non-government organizations, academic institutions, indigenous peoples and local communities, and private sector entities in an inclusive and participatory approach to enable mechanisms that aim to achieve the ambitious target. The three-day consultation included topics like policy and governance, social safeguards and contributions of Indigenous Peoples and local communities, sustainable finance solutions and innovations, and conservation planning. Participants gave feedback on the draft DENR policy on identifying and recognizing other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs) and further inputs in succeeding consultation meetings and network building.

“There is a huge emphasis on equity and effectiveness, which are critically important qualitative elements defining the success of 30x30. We really want to strengthen governance and management of existing systems of protected areas. We want to make sure these legally protected areas are delivering biodiversity outcomes,” said Madhu Rao, Chair of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Commission on Protected Areas and Senior Adviser for the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) Asia Programme.

The Philippines is one of 17 mega-biodiverse countries of the world as it is home to over 70% of the world's plant and animal species. However, the country is also a biodiversity hotspot with at least 700 threatened species. On top of that, the country is among the world’s most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

The DENR-Biodiversity Management Bureau (DENR-BMB) organized the first consultation workshop, together with WCS through the 30x30 Ocean Accelerator Grant; the Embassy of the United Kingdom; the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) through the GEF GBF Early Action Support and Biodiversity Corridor projects; the Philippine National Commission for UNESCO; Forest Foundation of the Philippines; USAID INSPIRE Project; Centre for Sustainability PH; Save Philippine Seas; Parabukas; and the Oceans 5-MSN 30x30 Consortium, composed of the Marine Environment and Resources Foundation, Rare, Oceana, Conservation International Philippines and the World Wildlife Fund Philippines.###

Ginawaran ng Komisyon ng Wikang Filipino (KWF) ang Kagawaran ng Kapaligiran at Likas na Yaman, o Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) ng Selyo ng Kahusayan sa Serbisyo Publiko Antas III sa katatapos na parangal ng Selyo ng Kahusayan sa Serbisyo Publiko. Layon ng naturang parangal na kilalanin ang mga ahensya ng pamahalaan at mga Lokal na Gobyerno para sa kanilang kagalingan sa paggamit ng wikang Filipino.

Kinilala ang DENR sa kahusayan sa paggamit ng wikang Filipino sa iba’t ibang aspeto ng trabaho, kabilang dito ang pagsasalin sa mga press release at nilalaman sa social media, at pagsusulat sa Filipino ng mga opisyal na dokumento at mga materyal para sa inpormasyon, edukasyon at komunikasyon.

“Isang karangalan ang maipagkaloob sa atin ng KWF ang gantimpala na tinaguriang ‘Selyo ng Kahusayan sa Serbisyo Publiko,’” ani Environment Secretary Maria Antonia Loyzaga.

“Ang kagawaran natin ay nakatuon sa pagtulong sa KWF sa pagtiyak at pagpapayabong ng ating pambansang wika. Sa mga kawani, opisyal, at mga kasama ko po dito sa DENR, isa pong paalala: Ang paggamit ng wikang Filipino sana din ay maging sagisag ng katapatan sa bayan, at ng galing at talino sa serbisyo. Sana po huwag nating kalimutan ito.”

Ayon naman kay KWF Chair Arthur Casanova, nakakatulong ang mga pagsisikap ng DENR sa kampanya ng KWF na magkaroon ng istandardisadong Filipino sa anyong pasulat man o pasalita

“Sana po ay hirangan kayo ng iba pang tanggapang pampamahalaan nang sa ganoon ay lubos nating matamo ang tagumpay sa paggamit ng wikang Filipino sa ating mga tanggapan,” dagdag ni Casanova.

Ang taunang Selyo ng Kahusayan sa Serbisyo Publiko ay ibinibigay kasabay ng pagdiriwang ng Buwan ng Wika kada Agosto, alinsunod sa Atas Tagapagpaganap 335 na nilagdaan ni dating Pangulong Corazon Aquino noong 1988. ###