PH professionals join forces on environmental concerns PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 26 September 2012 14:18

Filipino professionals are joining forces to help wholistically address environmental and climate change concerns nationwide.

On Tuesday, heads of various boards under the Philippines’ Professional Regulation Commission discussed during a workshop plans to boost the sector’s collaboration with government.

This is aimed at enabling professionals to truly use their respective skills and services to rise to the challenges of environmental concerns.

“The idea is to promote among our professionals complementation and partnership in environmental protection, natural resources conservation and climate change mitigation,” said River Basin Control Office Exec. Dir. Dr. Vicente Tuddao Jr., who spearheaded the workshop in Metro Manila.

He said outputs of such workshop - the first of its kind in the country - will serve as inputs for the planned memorandum of agreement that will institute Filipino professionals’ environmental and climate convergence.

Government is promoting convergence as a strategy of pooling resources and skills to better achieve its development goals.

“Convergence is among the most appropriate strategies foraddressing constraints in implementing public programs,” Tuddao said.

He noted such constraints include inadequate number ofprofessionals in specialty fields like water resource and land management as well as in mines and geosciences.

“The workshop is a step forward in finding solutions that will strengthen professional services for environmental protection, natural resource conservation and climate change mitigation,” he said.

A proposed assignment matrix was presented during the workshop.

The matrix identifies environmental and climate concerns and professionals’ groups deemed best fit to focus on these.

Among such concerns and corresponding proposed groups for these are air pollution, water pollution and solid waste management (chemical and sanitary engineers) as well as climate change and hazards like earthquakes (geologists and agricultural engineers).

Authorities plan holding more workshops to better define the assignments.

PRC, Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources and Philippine Association of Professional Regulatory Board Members will be signatories to the target MOA, Tuddao noted.

The MOA’s final draft is scheduled for presentation in Metro Manila next month during the first professionals’ summit, he said.

He hopes the proposed MOA can be signed during the event.

“We need a more responsive and rationalized approach to address environmental and climate change concerns,” he said.

Tuddao believes the target environmental convergence must push through, noting the environment is imperiled and climate change is threatening communities but there’s already a declining number of professionals working in environment and natural resources-related fields.

Such decline is due to the public’s preference for nursing and other popular courses, he noted.

During the workshop, DENR Asst. Sec. Cora Davis lauded PRC and the professionals for seeking to help address the country’s environmental and climate issues.

She raised need for professionals’ groups to police respective ranks so efforts on addressing such issues won’t be compromised.

“There’s also need to improve curricula for various fields,” she said.

Such improvement includes integrating into schools’ curricula updated information on environmental and climate concerns like green building and sustainable forest management, she added.