LEGAZPI CITY – The global campaign for climate change adaptation (CCA) is now focused on the tourism industry after a series of activities in-line with the implementation of the mainstreaming policy of President Benigno S. Aquino III through Climate Change Commission (CCC) Secretary Lucile Sering, Environment Secretary Ramon Paje, Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez and Presidential Communication Secretary Herminio ‘Sonny’ Coloma, Philippine Development Plan (PDP) cluster head of the public awareness monitoring of local government units (LGUs) and agencies including other stakeholders such as the different private and non-government organizations (NGOs).
Taking eco-cultural tourism as a new CCA platform, Manuel ‘Nong’ C. Rangasa, Conference Director, 1st Philippine Tourism Conference on Climate Change Adaptation (PTCCCA) and President and Chairman of the Local Climate Change Adaptation for Development (LCCAD, Inc.) said, “This campaign is in accordance with the priority policy agenda of President Aquino III which is also working under a very strong collaboration between the government and the cross section of society through the public-private partnership initiatives (PPPIs).
The LCCAD, Inc. and The Philippine EpiCentre Climate Change Magazine are private and non-government organizations recognized by the Office of the President, composed of experienced community adaptation practitioners (CAPs) in the Philippines, are the prime entities assisting the government in the upcoming Philippine Tourism Conference for CCA (PTCCCA) on August 23-25, this year at the Oriental Hotel and Resort here.
“The PTCCCA responds to the call of the President and is in line with the Millennium Development Goals’ (MDGs) mission of alleviating poverty. The activity is also to show the benefits of the nation’s economy from tourism,” Rangasa explained, adding that this is his new advocacy after choosing private practice to complement government efforts on CCA and the new Climate Change Risks Management strategies (CCRM).
Tourism Regional Director Maria Nini Ong-Ravanilla said “tourism sectors from different provinces, cities and municipalities of the country will be benefitted in the midst of CCA and CCRM.
To show a strong support to this LCCAD, Inc. initiative, Memorandum Circular 2012-108 was issued by Interior Secretary Jesse M. Robredo last June 18 which enjoins all local officials and technical staff of provinces, cities and municipalities of the Philippines to attend the 3-day conference (1st PTCCCA). Incidentally, this city will also celebrate simultaneously the ‘Ibalong Festival’ headed by City Mayor Carmen Geraldine Barrameda Rosal.
Particularly ordered under said memo circular are the tourism and environment committees of each Sanggunian Member, together with tourism officers, planning officers, disaster risk reduction and management officers and other technical staff of every province, city and municipality of the country.
Rangasa pointed out that the PTCCCA was conceptualized by the LCCAD and co-convenors as support to PNOy’s program of strengthening PPP initiatives and the involvement of the private sector in assisting the government towards tourism development.
Ravanilla added that mainstreaming CCA to eco-cultural tourism sectors will produce permanent and holistic jobs and will give a healthy and progressive sustainable lifeblood to the nation in a form of tax directed to the government fund.
Rangasa, likewise said that an inventory of ‘cultural properties’ heritage and impact assessments is needed to prove tourism destinations’ potential in the economic development of the country from the national to the local levels. “Such inventory and assessment has never been done anywhere in the Philippines before the PTCCCA.”
Different adaptation strategies and safe practices will be featured in the PTCCCA by Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda, United Nations First Senior Global Champion for Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction (CCA-DRR).
Scientists, experts, educators, businessmen and known officials of tourism in the country are slated to provide lectures, discussions and presentations during the 3-day conference.
Cabinet secretaries, senators and delegates from LGUs as well as private groups are also invited to participate in this event.