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CPAf staff attend the ASEAN Forum on urban resilience

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Dr. Maria Ana T. Quimbo and Mr. Nico Jayson C. Anastacio of CPAf shared their studies on climate change and urban resilience during the “Forum on Urban Resilience to Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction Management Strategies.” It was held last December 5-6, 2017 at Plaza Del Norte, Laoag City, Ilocos Norte.

Dr. Quimbo’s paper on “Implications of Climate Change to Peri-Urban Communities in Cambodia and Philippines” emphasized the vital part that the local government units play in climate change adaptation. The paper was based on the SUMERNET project, which Dr. Quimbo headed.

Meanwhile, Mr. Anastacio discussed his study on “Reducing River Pollution through Payment for Ecosystem Services towards Urban Resilience.” He proposed payment for the improvement of the water quality of the Calumpang River to increase the provision of the river’s ecosystem services. His paper was based on his thesis when he took MS Environmental Science in UP Los Baños.

Other paper presenters for the parallel and plenary sessions came from different institutions. The forum had four subthemes: 1) tools and methodologies for climate change impacts assessment; 2) urban resilience and green growth strategies; 3) institutional structures, policies and programs; and 4) management strategies for disaster risk reduction. From the presentations, participants learned a number of ways on how to respond to the changing climatic conditions, as well as to manage risks brought about by disasters.

Dr. Simplicia A. Pasicolan, the overall coordinator of the forum, emphasized in her talk the need to integrate research results in policymaking. “What is left for us to do is to strengthen and weave our research results together, and translate them to science-based policies and practices in order to work for the attainment of urban resilience to climate change and reduced disaster risks,” she said.

Her statement is in line with the ASEAN 2017’s theme “partnering for change, engaging the world.” To achieve urban resilience, there should be strong partnerships and collaborations of different stakeholders.

The ASEAN Forum was hosted by the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, with the support of the ASEAN National Organizing Committee. More than 200 delegates from the ASEAN member-countries attended the Forum.

Article by Nico Jayson C. Anastacio

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