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Republic of the Philippines
PALAWAN COUNCIL FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
(R.A. 7611)
Puerto Princesa City, Palawan

PCSD RESOLUTION NO. 09-383

RESOLUTION CREATING THE ENVIRONMENTAL ENFORCEMENT CENTER (EEC) IN SOUTHERN PALAWAN FOR THE INTENSIFICATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AND DETERRENCE OF ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES

WHEREAS, R.A. 7611, otherwise known as the Strategic Environmental Plan (SEP) for Palawan, took effect on 19 June 1992 section 6 of which provides that the SEP shall serve as the framework to guide the government agencies concerned in the formulation of plans, programs and projects affecting the environment and natural resources of Palawan;

WHEREAS, Section 2 thereof declares the policy of the State to protect, develop and conserve its natural resources towards which, it shall assist and support the implementation of plans, programs and projects formulated to preserve and enhance the environment, and at the same time pursue the socioeconomic development goals of the country; that it shall support and promote the sustainable development goals for the provinces through proper conservation, utilization and development of natural resources to provide optimum yields on a continuing basis;

WHEREAS, this same law provides that the SEP shall have, as its general philosophy, the sustainable development of Palawan, which is the improvement in the quality of life of its people in the present and future generations through the use of complementary activities of development and conservation that protect life-support ecosystems and rehabilitate exploited areas to allow upcoming generations to sustain development growth;

WHEREAS, Section 16 of the same law provides that the governance, implementation and policy direction of the SEP shall be exercised by the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development (PCSD);

WHEREAS, Sections 7 to 11 of said Act provides for the establishment of an Environmentally Critical Areas Network (ECAN), the main strategy of SEP, which is a graded system of protection and development control over the whole of Palawan, including its tribal lands, forests, mines, agricultural areas, settlement areas, small islands, mangroves, coral reefs, seagrass beds and the surrounding sea;

WHEREAS, in order to successfully implement the provisions of said Act, the Council, under Section 19, is vested with the power to (1) formulate plans and policies as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of the SEP Law, (2) coordinate with the local governments to ensure that the latter’s plans, programs and projects are aligned with the plans, programs and policies of the SEP and (3) call on any department, bureau, office, agency or instrumentality of the Government, and on private entities and organizations for cooperation and assistance in the performance of its functions;

WHEREAS, the municipalities of Rizal, Quezon and Bataraza are the only place in the country where the large species of mangroves, ceriops tanged, are found. This species is particularly suited to mangrove debarking because of its thick bark characteristic;

WHEREAS, during the 155th PCSD Meeting, the DENR Representative manifested that during the last quarter of 2008, the DENR and other agencies/organizations were able to conduct three operations involving three motorized vessels involved in the shipment of tanbark to Malaysia. In the same meeting, the representative from non-government organizations added that the alleged illegal debarking activities extends to Bgy. Taburi, Bgy.Latud, Bgy.Punta Baja and Bgy. Ransang;

WHEREAS, in a separate study, the Katala Foundation, a group that monitors the illegal trafficking of birds and wildlife, raised concerns over the increasing trade of Palawan Talking Mynah (sp. Gracula religiosa), the Blue-napcd Parrot (Tanygnathus lucionensis) and the Philippine Cockatoo, all of which are endangered species;

WHEREAS, Southern Palawan is pointed out as hotbed of illegal wildlife trade where birds are captured and sold to the black market in Manila;

WHEREAS, the KATALA Foundation study showed that there arc 13 species of mammals that are endemic to Palawan, and 11 birds are threatened by the illegal wildlife trade;

WHEREAS, In August 2006, 203 heads of talking mynah and parrot (which were illegally traded) were confiscated in Southern Palawan. Forty-eight (48) hatchlings and fledglings of hill mynas and blue naped parrots were seized via a buy-bust operation conducted by PCSDS, CIDG, PNP-Rizal and KATALA Foundation at Bgy. Campong Ulay in Rizal Palawan last May 2, 2007. On July 27, 2007, at Puerto Princesa Air Port, Puerto Princesa City, a total of, more or less, of 1,345 pieces of bark beetle, with an estimated total market value of P269,000, and which were believed to have originated from Southern Palawan were seized. On May 22, 2007, at Bgy. Punta Baja, Municipality of Rizal, Palawan, 12 heads of Hill Mynah (Palawan Talking Mynah) and 2 heads of Blue-naped parrot, with an estimated total market value of PI 14,000, were confiscated. On October 19, 2007, at Bgy. Tabon, Quezon, Palawan, a total, more or less, 40 heads of Hill Mynah (Palawan Talking Mynah), with an estimated total market value of P320,000.00, were also intercepted from certain Manuel Tabon. Other cases of environmental violations in Southern Palawan, specifically violations of Wildlife Act, Chainsaw Act, Cave’s Act and debarking activities, are recorded (for which cases were filed) with other enforcement agencies such as PNP, NBI, CIDG, KSK, etc.;

WHEREAS, in view of the above reports and studies conducted on the rampant and continuous illegal activities and environmental violations especially in Southern Palawan, there is a need to establish an enforcement center manned by a multi-sectoral team that shall act as the immediate response team in addressing reported illegal activities involving violations of environmental laws, rules and regulations and information dissemination campaign;

WHEREFORE, after a thorough deliberation, upon motion by Vice Governor David A. Ponce de Leon and duly seconded by Atty. Gerthie Mayo Anda, BE IT RESOLVED, as it is hereby resolved, TO APPROVE, as hereby it is approved, the installation/establishment of Environmental Enforcement Center in the southern part of Palawan subject to the following conditions:

1) that the head agency for this project shall be the Local Government of Rizal, PCSDS and PENRO and its membership shall be multi-sectoral, such as but not limited to KSK, BFAR, PNP-PPO, WESCOM, PNP Maritime, PNP CIDG, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine Navy, Philippine Air Force , PNNI and ELAC; and

2) that the municipality of Rizal shall be given priority in its implementation;

RESOLVED FINALLY, that a copy of this resolution be furnished to the Local Government of Rizal, PENRO and other agencies that will compose the Center for appropriate action.

I hereby certify that the above-quoted Resolution has been duly approved and adopted by the PCSD on 24th day of April 2009 at Puerto Princesa City, Palawan.

ROMEO B. DORADO
Secretary

APPROVED :

HON.JOEL T. REYES
Chair