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P5-M fund for Climate Change Academy to be released next year

LEGAZPI CITY, Nov. 29 — Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon Paje has committed an initial fund of P5 million which will be released next year to help finance the requirements of the newly opened Albay’s Climate Change Academy (CCA) here.

Paje committed the amount during the first National Media Conference on Climate Change Adaptation at the Bicol University (BU) here last Thursday..

The Academy was inaugurated by President Benigno S. Aquino III housed in a two-storey building inside the BU main campus here.

“We must first understand climate change before we can adapt to it, and this can only be done by consciously advocating this understanding through the use of the academy and its facilities. Funding this will make it move forward,” he said.

Paje said funding the CCA will help push its mission of promoting climate-change adaptation and mitigation in the country through the help of the Center for Initiatives and Research on Climate Change (CIRCA) based at the provincial Capitol here.

CIRCA is a living institution of the "Albay in Action on Climate Change (A2C2)" Program that is geared towards strengthening capacity for research and project and program implementation in progressive sustainable agriculture, forestry, fisheries, energy and eco-cultural tourism.

Its main role is to enhance the ability of Albay residents in particular and the Filipinos in general to cope with risks brought about by the changing climate.

Albay has been chosen as the host province for the CCA because of its rich history of coping with disasters and its adoption of innovative measures on disaster risk reduction and climate-change adaptation.

CCA aims to support the mainstreaming of the climate-change adaptation and risk-reduction framework down to the local government units.

Albay Gov. Joey Salceda said CCA does not only provide theoretical moorings for climate-change adaptive communities but will also serve as a venue for sharing experiences and best practices on disaster risk reduction and climate-change impact management.

Specifically, Salceda said CCA aims to develop and strengthen the theoretical knowledge and practical skills of major stakeholders on climate and disaster risk assessment, focusing on characterization and evaluation of climatic hazards, vulnerabilities and adaptive capacities, disaster/climate risk reduction and managemen, climate change adaptation, disaster risk management, planning and programming.

CCA was established through the initiative of the Albay provincial government with support from the Millennium Development Goal Fund (MDGF), Agencia Espanola de Cooperacion Internacional para el Desarollo (AECID), Embajada De Espana En Filipinas, United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and agencies under the Office of the President. (PNA)

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