Southern Luzon State University

Southern Luzon State University

SLSU, ASCOT, and TK joined in Capacitating the LGU Department Heads of Quezon and Aurora Provinces in Environmental Governance

By: Jaquelyn D. Merjudio

SLSU and Tanggol Kalikasan continues its collaboration in advocating for Environmental Justice through Environmental Justice Reform Program Phase 3 (EJSRP 3). One of key activity under this project is the Environmental Governance Training for LGU Department Heads for the Quezon Province which was held on May 20-24, 2024, at Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University (DMMMSU), Bacnotan, La Union. This training is also in collaboration with the Aurora State College of Technology (ASCOT) for the participating municipalities of Aurora Province. Attendees’ hails from the coastal and islands municipalities of Quezon and Aurora Provinces along the Philippine Rise.

During the training, speakers and resource person from SLSU and ASCOT delivered lectures on Basic Concept of Ecology, Sustainable Development Goals, Climate Change Adaptation, and Disaster Risk Reduction, Applicable Management Models, and Basic Environmental Law Enforcement Skills and Procedure. In particular, Dr. Felino J. Gutierrez, Jr., For. Eraldwin Dimailig, Prof. Karl Niño Sisperez, from SLSU College of Agriculture (CAg) tackled Basic Ecological Concepts and Environmental Principles, Climate Change Adaptation-Disaster Risk Reduction (CCA-DRR), Integrated Watershed Management Approach (IWMA), and Sustainable Agriculture respectively. In addition, other trained SLSU faculty members and staff, including Dr. Cherry C. Favor, Dr. Manilyn Zubieta, and Ms. Arceli R. Obmerga alongside faculty and staff of ASCOT and TK, facilitated each session of the training

The training saw active participation from 23 representatives of 10 municipalities in Quezon Province, including Burdeos, General Nakar, Infanta, Jomalig, Panukulan, Patnanungan, Perez, Polillo, Quezon, and Real. As well as 21 representatives from 6 municipalities in Aurora including Baler, Casiguran, Dinalungan, Dipaculao, Maria Aurora, and San Luis. Participants include heads and staff of the Municipal Agriculture Officer (MAO), Municipal Environmental and Natural Resource Officer (MENRO), and the Municipal Planning and Development Office, also in attendance are the Presidents of the Association of Barangay (village) Chairpersons (ABC), and the Chairpersons of the Environment/Agriculture Committee of the municipal/city council.

The group also engaged in a knowledge learning exchange, witnessing the good environmental practices in 1.) Bauang Bakawan Ecotourism Park, Parian Oeste, Bauang, La Union, 2.) LGU Balaoan Sanitary Landfill, Bauang, La Union.

Through this training, the department heads of the local municipalities in Quezon and Aurora Province are empowered with the knowledge and skills necessary to enforce environmental laws, combat environmental crimes such as wildlife trafficking and illegal logging, and manage natural resources sustainably. Further, the project aims for local municipalities of Quezon and Aurora to be able to draft ordinances, local regulations or executive orders related to environmental protection and an Area Specific Action Plan (ASAP) for their respective municipalities.

Photo credits to Tanggol Kalikasan

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