Cimatu talks emission reduction

Cimatu showed programs, projects, and policies on water resources and management. He emphasized his desire to clean the Pasig River, Manila Bay, and Laguna Lake.

The DENR will be vigorous in the promotion of clean and green energy resources, stressed by Cimatu. The Department plans to achieve this through the use of the Clean Development Mechanism which is a financial mechanism under the Kyoto Protocol that allows the issuance of Certified Emission Reduction (CER) credits to emission-reduction projects in developing countries. These credits can be traded and sold, and be used by developed countries in order to meet their emission reduction targets as part of their commitment to the Kyoto Protocol. Also, there is the Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM) between the Philippines and Japan in which emission reduction projects in the country will also produce “JCM credits” that will be shared by both parties. This mechanism aims for the adoption of advanced low carbon technologies.

Cimatu emphasized three things which the DENR would do for managing the issuance of environmental clearances for investors. First, is the provision of facility for the online applications of Environmental Compliance Clearance for Category B Projects and Certificates of Non-Coverage (CNC) for Category D Projects. Second, is the delegation of authority to clear issuance of permits for cutting planted trees to the regional level. Lastly, the DENR plans to streamline the processing of water permits.

The DENR had made efforts on the waste-to-energy (WTE) and on addressing the issue of landfills and dumpsites. The National Solid Waste Management Commission passed a WTE Resolution on June 9, 2016. Also, the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) was equipped with a laboratory to test and analyze pollutants. In addition, a Department Administrative Order for WTE is under formulation.

To ensure responsible mining, Cimatu spoke of requiring the mining operators to be ISO 14001 accredited and for the Philippines to be a member of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. A draft bill is currently in the Congress which increases the share of the local government from the utilization of the mineral resources. Cimatu pointed that “mining projects should be technically feasible, environmentally compliant, culturally and socially acceptable, and financially viable. An absence of one in these factors means that the project is not responsible.”

The Australian-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce Philippines (ANZCHAM), in partnership with the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CanCham) held a Joint Membership Meeting with Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary designate Roy Cimatu to understand the direction and top programs of the incoming Secretary.