CCC Pushes for the Protection and Conservation of Coastal Blue Carbon Ecosystems

March 22, 2018 Thursday

March 22, 2018. In line with the government’s efforts to promote climate-smart and climate-adaptive communities, the Climate Change Commission (CCC) facilitated the development of a comprehensive Blue Carbon Roadmap for the National Blue Carbon Initiative.

The CCC assembled representatives from national government agencies, non-government organizations, the academe and the private sector with existing programs and projects on blue carbon last March 19 to 21 to create the blueprint towards achieving the goal of the National Blue Carbon Initiative of building the resilience of coastal communities.

According to Climate Change Commissioner Noel Gaerlan, the crafting of the roadmap is consistent with the provisions of the 2017-2022 Philippine Development Plan and three major international agreements—the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

“Blue carbon ecosystems, like seagrasses and mangroves, are valuable ecosystems because they serve as protection of coastal communities from storm surges and sea level rise, prevention of coastal erosion, regulation of the quality of water, and food security,” Gaerlan said. “Blue carbon could also mitigate climate change as they are also carbon sinks. They have a very high capacity to sequester and retain carbon dioxide,” he added.

The Blue Carbon Initiative started in 2011 as a coordinated, global program focused on mitigating climate change through the conservation and restoration of the blue carbon ecosystems. This initiative is being spearheaded by the Conservation International, in cooperation with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Recognizing the significance of localizing this initiative, the CCC has drafted a resolution creating the Blue Carbon Steering Committee and Technical Working Group (TWG) of the Philippines.

Fulfilling its role as the Committee Secretariat, the CCC organized a three-day workshop to convene the members of the technical working group (TWG) to develop the roadmap for the Blue Carbon Initiative, which covers the preparation, development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, and policy formulation for the protection and conservation of coastal blue carbon ecosystems.