UPRI joins 3rd Core TWG for the Philippine Blue Carbon Initiative

The University of the Philippines Resilience Institute (UP RI) together with other scientists around the country, recently conducted its 3rdBlue Carbon Technical Working Group (TWG) Meeting last 31 May 2018 at the GIZ Conference Room, Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center, Quezon City. Headed by the Climate Change Commission, the three-hour meeting revolved on the emerging issues and challenges that the Philippine Blue Carbon Initiative would face in the future.

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Specifically, the technical group meeting focused on the following points:

  1. Review of the comments on the blue carbon workshop output;
  2. Preparations for the next activities of the Blue Carbon Technical Working Group; and
  3. Preparation for the finalization of the National Blue Carbon Initiative Roadmap.

Led by Climate Change Commission representative Mr. Alex Lapiz, the meeting started with the improvement of the roadmap based from the comments of the technical working group. According to Lapiz, there is a need to repackage and create a detailed framework capturing the basic activities on the previously created roadmap. A representative from the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) also suggested that there is a need to create an outline first that translates to the concept of the established roadmap. Setting realistic and long-term goals were also discussed, including the determination of pilot sites for the project.

Accordingly, the reformulation of the Blue Carbon Initiative roadmap should complement with the Coral Triangle Initiative which promotes the Blue Carbon Agenda. The Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries, and Food Security (CTI-CFF) is a multilateral agenda which comprise of six countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, and the Philippines, which focuses on sustaining the marine and coastal environment through addressing critical issues with regards to climate change, marine diversity, and food security (CTI-CFF, 2018).

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The technical working group also talked about the creation of framework of action with regards to the institutionalization of the Philippine Blue Carbon Initiative in the Philippines. Thus, there is a need to establish a body that can identify a system of protection in contribution to the local economy. Since the main problem is resources, the technical working group also considered the possible partnership with private sectors that have the same goal as the National Blue Carbon Initiative.

Other matters with regards to the 3rd core technical group meeting include the preparation for the next Philippine Blue Carbon Workshop, and establishment of future strategies and policies for the future work.