To further design initiatives that will strengthen the resource management and biodiversity conservation, the Local Government of Zamboanga City, together with its partners from Protect Wildlife and Partnership for Biodiversity of USAID, organized an Environmental Summit on March 11, 2020 at Marcian Convention Center, Marcia Garden Hotel, Zamboanga City.
With the hope of crafting data-based approach interventions, experts from the local government, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and academe presented successes, challenges and milestones of Zamboanga City towards environmental resiliency. Represented by Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer-in-Charge Edgardo P. Montojo, a Keynote Message of DENR Regional Executive Director of Region IX Crisanta Marlene P. Rodriguez was delivered. She thanked the partners in supporting the event through the projects Protect Wildlife and Partnership for Biodiversity and reported the results of their efforts on E-NIPAS protected areas (Pasonanca Natural Park and Great and Little Sta. Cruz Islands Protected Landscape and Seascape), co-management agreement for Once Islas, solid waste management, restoration of Cawa-Cawa Boulevard, Expanded National Greening Program, wildlife law enforcement, and partnerships and collaboration with other institutions and organizations. This was followed by an update on the Environmental Code of the City of Zamboanga which was discussed by one of the authors Hon. Cesar L. Jimenez, Sr., Chair of the Committee on Natural Resources and Environmental Protection. Dr. Eduardo M. Bisquera, Jr., Assistant Department Head of the City Environment and Natural Resources, provided the rationale of the Summit where he highlighted that the event is one of the vehicles to develop an action plan to properly manage the important habitats of flora and fauna that make up the rich biodiversity of the city. Ms. Clarissa Rendon of Protect Wildlife, representative of US-DOI In-country Representative Atty. Asis Perez, talked about the Expanded National Integrated Protected Areas System (E-NIPAS) Act of 2018.
One of the activity highlights was the unveiling of the Zamboanga City Biodiversity Management Framework which was led by representatives from the LGU of Zamboanga City, US DOI-ITAP and DENR IX. The launch was also accompanied by an audio-visual presentation (https://youtu.be/OOWGnufVnJg).
Presenters include: City Planning and Development Coordinator Engr. Rodrigo S. Sicat, EnP who discussed Water Security; Supervising Environmental Management Specialist For. Gerry R. Pollisco who talked about the Zamboanga City Solid Waste Management Plan from 2020-2030; and, Public Service Officer IV Rodrigo S. Pagotaisidro who shared the ordinance on the establishment of the Integrated Solid Waste Management System of Zamboanga City. A Memorandum of Agreement between the LGU of Zamboanga City and Zamboanga State College of Marine Sciences and Technology on the management of Biodiversity Research and Learning Center in Sta. Cruz Islands was also signed during the event.