CCC: House Bills on peatland conservation, protection and restoration crucial to climate resilience

March 18, 2023 Saturday

MANILA, 18 March 2023 – The Climate Change Commission (CCC) lauds the approval of the Substitute Bill consolidating House Bill Nos. 3055 and 5083 or "An Act to Conserve, Protect, Restore, and Sustainably Manage Peatlands and its Resources to Enhance the Country's Resilience to Climate Change, and for Other Purposes.”

Presided by Committee Chairperson and Bohol 1st District Representative @Edgardo Chatto, the Substitute Bill was deliberated and approved during the House Committee on Climate Hearing on February 22.

The CCC endorsed the main provisions of the Substitute Bill, highlighting that sustainable management of peatlands can be a key measure to accelerate climate change mitigation and ecosystem restoration.

CCC Commissioner Rachel Anne S. Herrera delivered a manifestation in support of the bill's immediate passage, and emphasized the importance of peatlands as an efficient instrument for carbon storage.

“The CCC expresses its deepest appreciation to the Committee as it is poised to approve what will be a landmark law in advancing our climate commitments through nature-based solutions,” Commissioner Herrera said.

Peatlands are wetland ecosystems characterized with soils that are carbon-rich dead and decaying plant matter under high water saturation conditions. Peatlands sequester twice as much carbon as forests, and play a major role in disaster risk reduction, including flood control.

“Peatlands conservation, protection, restoration and sustainable management is part of our larger effort on climate change mitigation and adaptation,” said CCC Vice Chair and Executive Director Robert E.A. Borje.

Apart from being a carbon storage, peatlands can also help mitigate the climate crisis by providing a net-cooling effect and critical habitat for a wide range of biodiversity, including endemic species.

The Substitute Bill on conservation, protection, restoration and sustainable management measures will cover all peatlands and peatland resources nationwide within public and private lands.

According to the Philippine National Action Plan for the Sustainable Use and Protection of Peatlands, there are two (2) confirmed peatland sites in the country.

These include the 5,325-hectare Caimpugan Peat Swamp Forest in Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary in Agusan del Sur, and the 3,088-hectare Leyte Sab-a Basin Peatland in Alang-Alang and Sta. Fe in Leyte where 44% of the area has been reclaimed for agriculture.

As part of whole-of-government and whole-of-nation approach in ecosystems management, the bill will also provide guidance to all concerned national government agencies and local government units in mainstreaming peatlands protection and conservation in their plans, policies, and programs.

For more information on they climate change-related laws and policies, visit the CCC website at