Speakers during the opening plenary of the Forum include Partnership for Clean Air President Rene Pineda (standing), CAI-Asia Deputy Executive Director Atty. Glynda Bathan, EMB OIC-Director Atty. Juan Miguel T. Cuna, DENR Assistant Secretary Cora Davis, DENR Secretary Hon. Ramon J.P. Paje, DOTC Spokesperson Atty. Nick Conti, and MMDA General Manager Corazon T. Jimenez
Over 200 advocates and supporters from the government, private sector and the civil society tackled financing mechanisms to strengthen the implementation of air quality improvement programs in the country last 30-31 July 2012 at the Crowne Plaza in Ortigas Center.
Organized by the Partnership for Clean Air, in collaboration with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), and the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), the 4th Annual Forum aimed to provide a venue for exchanging innovative ideas on how and where to source funds for programs and projects on clean air.
DENR Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje, who has been hosting the annual multi-sectoral gathering for two consecutive years, highlighted the strengthened partnerships gained over the years which led to notable improvements in the country’s air quality.
“Although the air quality throughout the country is generally getting better, there is still much to improve. We need financial, technological and technical resources for implementing programs and projects on clean air. This forum seeks to achieve concrete recommendations on the various financing mechanisms available to strengthen further the implementation of the Clean Air Act,” Paje said.
With the theme, “Financing Mechanisms for Clean Air Strategies and Technologies,” speakers from Clean Air Initiative for Asian Cities, DOTC, MMDA, Metro Manila Anti-Smoke Belching Association (MMASBA), BanKO, Peace and Equity Foundation, Foundation for Philippine Environment, DENR, Development Bank of the Philippines, and Land Bank of the Philippines discussed various financing schemes during the two-day forum.
The annual gathering was held in support of the Clean Air 10 Declaration signed by clean air advocates in 2009. The declaration highlighted ten attainable goals that different sectors can work on to help government achieve its goal of improving the quality of air in the country.
Strategies identified to reduce emissions include the shift to environment-friendly fuel types, reduction in the sulfur content of fuel, introduction of vehicle emissions control technology, implementation of vehicle inspection and maintenance program, implementation of improved traffic management plans, establishment of ambient air quality monitoring network, implementation of stricter motor vehicle standards, improvement in operator driving skills, strengthening of monitoring of private emission testing centers, among others.
The 2-day forum ended with a fervent declaration of support by stakeholders to push for the allocation of the Air Quality Management Fund and Special Vehicle Pollution Control Fund to finance air pollution reduction strategies and technologies.
Photos are available here.
Presentations are available here.