Photo courtesy of PCSDS

Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS) executive director Atty. Teodoro Jose Matta has vowed a stronger implementation of the province’s SEP law under the incoming new administration.

“What we can expect with the aid of Congress, of the Senate, and hopefully with our new president, with the help of the new administration, we intend to be a stronger PCSD dahil ang dami naming programa,” Matta said as the special law RA 7611 marked its 30th year Sunday at the SM City Puerto Princesa Cinema.

Matta credited RA 7611 or the Strategic Environmental Plan (SEP) for safeguarding the province’s forest cover and biodiversity.

He said that without the SEP law, Palawan would have already lost its biodiversity and environment.

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“Palagay ko kalbo na ang Palawan kung walang SEP Law,” he said.

He guaranteed that the PCSD will play a larger role in protecting the environment.

“There will be a shift of focus [ang PCSD in the next coming years] we have to strengthen our roles. Kaya we what we are doing is strengthening our programs,” Matta said.

He also recognized ECAN zoning prescribed under the SEP law as a major accomplishment of the Council.

“[Our] Biggest accomplishment is ECAN, without ECAN I believe this province would have been lost. We have ECAN and municipalities are guided accordingly,” Matta said.

He said one of their challenges is human encroachment into the forests.

“We have to abate migration. Because ot migration ang human expansion natin ay at mga munisipyo ay uncontrolled na. Ang daming pumupunta sa mga bukid, namamahay sa mga gubat at ang ating forest line ay nawawala,” he added.

The PCSD kicked off its digital and physical exhibit on June 13 at SM City Puerto Princesa until June 19 with the theme “SEP@30: Driving Three Decades of Sustainable Development.

Part of the celebration is a video presentation, a song and writing contest, and a print campaign exhibit “Wild for Life” to raise awareness against illegal activities as well as campaign for the wildlife management actions and enforcement.

On Sunday, the SEP Coffee Table Book was also launched.

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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.