Saturday, October 10, 2020

USAID exec honored in Zambo

THE LOCAL government of Zamboanga thanked the United States Agency for International Development and Dr. Reynaldo Navacilla, Field Site Manager of USAID Protect Wildlife Project following the completion of management plans for Islas de Santa Cruz, Pasonanca Park and Watershed, the assessment of Once Islas here.

Dr. Reynaldo Navacilla, Field Site Manager of USAID Protect Wildlife Project, receives a certificate of commendation from Mayor Beng Climaco and City Administrator Apple Go. (Bong Serondo)

Mayor Beng Climaco and City Administrator Apple Go led local officials and employees in thanking Navacilla, who was received a certificate of commendation and a City Council resolution expressing gratitude for the USAID program.

She said the Protect Wildlife Project - a partnership between the United States and the Philippines - donated complete sets of computer equipment to the local government in an effort to further boost environmental and fishery protection here.

The donation was coursed recently through the Office of the City Environment and Natural Resources (OCENR) and the Office of the City Agriculturist (OCA), according to Climaco, adding, the equipment will help in the daily operations of OCENR and OCA in maintaining their data base intended for recording, retrieving and analysing data related to apprehensions, seizures and other information related to enforcing environmental and fishery laws here.

Part of the donation was environmental plans developed in partnership with the local government and technical assistance from the USAID. The documents included the Zamboanga City Central Mangroves Framework, Ayala Watershed Management and Development Plan and Manicahan Watershed Management and Development Plan, Zamboanga City Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan and the Environment Code of the City of Zamboanga.

The P1.2-billion, five year, Protect Wildlife biodiversity conservation project was launched in March 2017 by the U.S. government through USAID which partnered with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and aims to help protect and manage the country’s diverse habitats and species.

The project is also designed to address biodiversity loss and illegal wildlife trade in some of the most vibrant and vulnerable ecosystems in the country. And it uses a comprehensive strategy that combines technical assistance for government and civil society partners, partnerships for conservation financing, behavior change campaigns and social marketing, science and technology, and environmental law enforcement. 

This holistic approach promotes partnership among environmental stakeholders and empowers those best positioned to address biodiversity loss and the illegal wildlife trade.

Aside from Zamboanga City, the provinces of Tawi-Tawi and Palawan, which host some of the most bio-diverse habitats and unique species in the country, are included in the project because they are also exposed to various human-induced threats such as poaching and trafficking of wildlife, destructive fishing practices, and loss of habitats from widespread conversion of forests, wetlands, and mangroves to settlements and agricultural lands. (Zamboanga Post)

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