Access to Environmental Information in the Philippines

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Access to Environmental Information in the Philippines

  1. 1. PHILIPPINES:State of Access toEnvironmental Information& Specific Goals and ActionBy: Arvin A. Jo, Esq.Ateneo School of Government
  2. 2. Air Quality in Metro Manila, Philippines
  3. 3. Source: Philippine Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB)
  4. 4. Source: Philippine Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB)
  5. 5. Source: Philippine Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB)
  6. 6. Policy Framework for Accessto Information (in General)• Philippine Constitution Art. III Bill of Rights. Section 7. The right of thepeople to information on matters of public concern shallbe recognized. Access to official records, and todocuments and papers pertaining to official acts,transactions, or decisions, as well as to governmentresearch data used as basis for policy development, shallbe afforded the citizen, subject to such limitations asmay be provided by law.
  7. 7. Policy Framework for Accessto Information (in General)• Landmark Supreme Court Decision Legaspi v. Civil Service Commission (G.R. No. 72119 [1987])“Article III, Sec. 7 is an enforceable right even without animplementing legislation”• FOI or POGI Bill (still unlegislated) SECTION. 4. Access to Information. – Every person who is a Filipinocitizen has a right to and shall, on request, be given access to anyrecord under the control of a government agency. Governmentagencies shall make available to the public for scrutiny…allinformation pertaining to official acts, transactions or decisions…subject to the exceptions enumerated…
  8. 8. Access to Information(in Extractive Industry)• EITI Philippines The Philippines has filed for EITI Candidacy in 2013 Aims to produce a Report that will compare the revenue that thegovernment receives from Extractive Industry versus what theIndustry has paid Philippine EITI is headed by a Government-appointed Focal Personand composed of 4 CSO reps, 4 Industry reps, 4 Government reps
  9. 9. Access to Information(re: Pollution Control)• Establishing a PRTR System Greenpeace Philippines Study (w/ A.L. La Vina & G.P. Bueta)found that- Performance rating procedure and color-coded rating scheme hasproven to be ineffective- Obtaining relevant and timely information is difficult andoftentimes costly
  10. 10. Access to Information(re: Environmental Degradation)• Creating a Natural Resources ValuationSystem The Concept of a “Total Economic Value” in assessing potentialeconomic value of natural resources versus conservation Valuation of Ecosystem Services Caveat: Process must be inclusive and consultative

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