Environment Code passage pushed

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Friday, July 18, 2014


THE Baguio City Environment Code must be implemented already.

This was stressed by former councilor Erdolfo Balajadia, one of the first proponents of the environment code for the city during a recent press conference.

Referring to it as the flagship of policies, Balajadia said it is important for the Environment Code to be approved already to enable the city to address the rapid urban spread and avert its negative upshots in the Summer Capital.

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The proposed Environment Code, which was crafted last year, encompasses all environment-related policies enacted by city lawmakers and aims to improve the administration and management of the city's natural resources as well as to govern efforts for the conservation, protection, enhancement, utilization and rehabilitation of the city environment.

Balajadia sought for its approval as issues concerning improper land use, illegal squatting and establishment of structures not complying to the Building Code of the city are becoming more rampant.

Specifically, the former councilor would wants more intense geohazard mapping to ensure safety of the inhabitants in the city.

He said the mandated soil testing before construction was a good initiative of the city government to assure safety of the constituents.

In addition, he said the City Government must ensure all guidelines and requirements in construction of buildings are all complied with and follows the city's Building Code.

Furthermore, Balajadia highlighted the city's Comprehensive Land Use Plan must be contained within the environment code.

"I've been waiting and waiting for that Land Use Plan," he said adding, "I hope the City Planning Office will finish it so that it can be included in the discussion of the environment code."

He said that although it is not yet too late for the Comprehensive Land Use Plan and Environment Code to be approved, he hopes that these will become a law as soon as possible.

The Environment Code of Baguio City as stated in its Declaration of Policy aims to "maintain Baguio City as an eco-cultural tourist destination thereby it will strictly implement actions and policies that will do so."

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on July 19, 2014.

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