A Model Philippines Climate Change Adaptation Initiatives

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Chairman and Executive Director

Local Climate Change Adaptation for Development (LCCAD)

Community Adaptation Practitioner

Executive Director, CIRCA (2007-2011)

Project Manager, MDG Achievement Fund:1656 Albay Demo (UNDP)

(Joint Programme of the Government of the Philippines (GOP) through NEDA, the Government of Spain (GOS) and the United Nations System

lccad.org@gmail.com or nongrangasa.lccad@gmail.com 




“Action on climate change starts with education; climate change adaptation starts with disaster risk reduction. Mainstreaming climate change adaptation as a provincial strategy follows five steps:

(1)  Adopt an MDG as your goal and adaptation follows,

(2)  Ordain policies,

(3)  Allocate budgets,

(4)  Execute programs, and

(5)  Build institutions to realize your goal.”



Governor of the Province of Albay

First United Nations Senior Global Champion

on DRR and Climate Change Adaptation



It is widely recognized that global warming and climate change are happening, threatening the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and improvement of the Human Development Index (HDI). The experience of Albay attests to this.

The experience of Albay attests to this, has been exposed to various climate risks like tropical cyclones, storm surges, heavy precipitation and landslides that are expected to worsen as a result of climate change. The impacts of climate change and volcanic eruptions undermine its initiatives to achieve the MDGs and overall economic growth and development. Typhoon Reming in 2006 claimed 1,023 lives and several hundreds were reported missing across the province. Damages to infrastructure, homes and farms due to lahar, flash floods, landslides and strong winds were estimated at P3.2 billion. This annual pattern drains the province of its resources, providing a real challenge to the attainment of legitimate aspirations of government and people.

Coastal communities need protection from sea level rise and other impacts of climate change while upland communities must prepare for more landslides, mudslides and floods.

Albayanons now depend primarily on themselves in responding to these threats. With the national policy ordaining local government units as the frontline agencies for addressing issues of climate change (Climate Change Act of 2009), the Government of Albay sought assistance to understand climate science in the local context.

Within a two-year period, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan unanimously passed resolutions and the Office of the Governor issued executive orders for the adoption of policies and strategies, their institutionalization, and the provision of financial resources to strengthen capability of its cities, towns and barangays capabilities against climate change. Donor agencies and the UN in the Philippines were also engaged in support of the following:

  1. The establishment of the Centre for Initiatives and Research on Climate Adaptation (PGA-CIRCA) as the institution for climate change concerns and its Climate Change Academy for LGUs and the Local Climate Change Adaptation for Development (LCCAD) for the propagation of knowledge and expertise in the mainstreaming in climate change adaptation;
  2. The integration of climate change concepts and practices in the curricula of primary and secondary education;
  3. The establishment of Albay model for local, national and international advocacy;
  4. Public-Private Partnership initiatives in DRR and CCA



The Province of Albay prioritizes the enhanced provision of services to improve the resilience of its vulnerable communities. Local climate change adaptation is the battle cry of Albay CIRCA headed by Manuel “Nong” C. Rangasa. Through climate change adaptation and mitigation measures that also provide means for attaining food security, water sufficiency, human health & security, sustainable energy, climate-smart industries & services, Albay hopes to prepare its communities for the intensified impacts of climate change.

For climate change adaptation, a cross-cutting, science- and ecosystem-based approach that considers equity and social justice, the people’s health, the state of coastal, water and forest resources/biodiversity, and agriculture, is being developed for the assessment of Environmental/Ecological Stability.



The release of the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2007 informed the world of existing evidence showing discernible influence on many physical and biological systems of anthropogenic warming and the need for mitigation measures to prevent new emissions and adaptation to address impacts of past emissions.

For Albay, the usual point of land entry of tropical storms on the eastern Pacific seaboard of Luzon, this scientific information was vital to the conceptualization of the local policy and strategic response to intensifying meteorological events being experienced at the time.

The peculiar reality of climate and disaster in Albay brought home to policy makers and adaptation practitioners the lesson that disaster risk reduction is the first line of defense. To address the combinations of impacts of volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and climate change on the well-being and economic condition of communities, new policies and strategies had to be innovated. The building of resilient communities became the priority concern of the government. Then Albay CIRCA Executive Director Manuel “Nong” Rangasa spearheaded a province-wide CCA program. The best practices of Albay to date are:

  1. Socio-Political Advocacy for Green Economy
  2. Mainstreaming DRR/CCA into Local Development Planning Processes for integrated Physical Framework
  3. Mainstreaming Climate Change in the Philippine Education Curriculum in Albay



Brief Description:

International, national and local advocacy for climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction was needed to raise awareness and deepen understanding of the new phenomenon and approaches for addressing impacts among the people and policy/decision makers. In Albay, the devastation wrought by intensifying tropical storms and heavier precipitation in combination with volcanic eruptions provided the perfect conditions for launching such a campaign and achieving its objectives. At the time when the memory of suffering and loss is fresh, everyone is looking for solutions, willing to cooperate on initiatives that might shield from the next strike.

The socio-political advocacy sought to encourage the adoption of national policy for climate change adaptation and the Green Economy by establishing Albay as a global, national and regional LGU model and champion. It would signal the readiness of Albay to work with the national leadership and international donor agencies for the establishment of the necessary institutional framework. In particular, Albay CIRCA took the lead in accordance with the Local Government Code and the proposed mandate of LGUs in the Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction bills pending in the Congress of the Philiippines.

Strategies & Processes/Methods:

Armed with the global climate change premise, Albay initiated dialogue and collaboration with the scientific/research and academic communities, the government, business, religious, diplomatic and donor sectors, public intellectuals for the benefit, primarily, of Albayanons, for all vulnerable Filipino communities, and for the rest of the developing world. It was clear to the Provincial Governor that the threats were of such magnitude and intensity that the response could not be less than comprehensive and integrated on all levels.

Albay’s socio-political advocacy sought to influence key national and local policy and decision makers in government to consider climate and disaster risks and concerns in socio-economic development plans, to adopt policies, to build institutions and provide resources. To achieve this goal, the following activities were led by Albay CIRCA with national and local government and international partners:

  1. The First and Second National Conferences on Climate Change Adaptation (NCCCA) of 2007 & 2009
  2. Climate Science Seminars and Multisectoral Dialogues for improved understanding of the physical, socio-cultural and e0conomic impacts of climate change
  3. Participation in the conceptualization and implementation of climate-related global and national programs and projects
  4. Continuing participation in the Conference of Parties (COP) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) meetings, Asia-Pacific Regional Adaptation Knowledge Management (AKM), Asia Pacific Adaptation networks
  5. Adoption of the multi-awarded super software of CLIMSystem Limited, SimCLIM, the Manifold GIS Software, and the DOST-PHIVOLCS REDAS Software
  6. Capacity development support for research institutions and initiatives of other local government units in Region 5

Major Partners:  Office of the President, Senate and Congressional Committees on Climate Change, Climate Change Commission, NEDA, DENR, DOST, DILG, United Nations in the Philippines, Asian Development Bank, World Bank, GTZ/GIZ, World Agroforestry Centre-ICRAF Philippines, UP Los Baños, Manila Observatory, Christian Aid, Leagues of Provincial Governors, City Mayors, and Municipal Mayors

Achieved Results:

  1. Albay Declaration (2007) calling for the early passage of the Climate Change Act (Republic Act 9729) and the creation of the Climate Change Commission
  2. Manila Declaration (2009) calling for the early passage of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act (Republic Act 10121) and the creation of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council
  3. LGU Declarations of Commitment (LGU Summit +3i Luzon & Visayas, 2010 and Mindanao, 2011) calling for full support for the attainment of the MDG targets
  4. Media Declaration of 2011 calling for more people participation in promoting climate change awareness
  5. The establishment of Albay/CIRCA’s Climate Change Academy for Local Government Units and the Local Climate Change Adaptation for Development (LCCAD) calling for the Public- Private Partnerships initiatives on climate change adaptation
  6. Albay was declared by the United Nations as the First Senior Global Champion on Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction and global model LGUs


Brief Description: This project was designed to climate-proof vulnerable communities through climate-sensitive integration into local development planning processes.

Background:  The 2006 devastation brought by Typhoon Reming (Durian), aggravated by mudslides of volcanic ash and boulders, had wiped out communities, houses, properties and buried Barangays Padang and Maipon in mud and boulders. The areas are now stark reminders of the vulnerability of Albay Province and the absolute necessity of climate change adaptation and climate-sensitive development processes in local governance.

2007 marked a new era in the history of Albay Province.  Joey Sarte Salceda, an economist, was elected Governor of the Province of Albay. Together with his Senior Technical Adviser and CIRCA Executive Director Manuel “Nong” C. Rangasa, Albay was quick to respond to the need for dynamic political leadership and with strong support from the Sangguniang Panlalawigan; they adopted SPA Resolution 2007-04 which enjoined all government agencies and private entities to cooperate in climate change adaptation measures for the sake of present and future generations of Albayanos.

Albay, as the frontliner among LGUs in risk management mainstreaming, it is also the ideal setting for the assessment, innovation and testing of programs and activities for the inter-linkages between CCA and DRR.

Albay’s experience demonstrates a shift in the governance paradigm: “MDGs as the road map to human development and adaptation as the means!” a radical but rational maneuver that avoids the very high cost of unsustainable disaster response to risk reduction.

Location/s Covered:  All 15 municipalities and 3 cities comprising 720 barangays

Partners/Cooperating Organizations:

  • Office of Civil Defense / RDRRMC
  • Department of Science and Technology-PAGASA / PHIVOLCS
  • Department of Environment and Natural Resources-EMB / MGB
  • Housing Land Use Regulatory Board
  • National Economic and Development Authority
  • United Nations Development Programme
  • Spanish Government-AECID
  • University of the Philippines Los Banos
  • University of Sunshine Coast,Queensland, Australia
  • IPCC Experts
  • Asia Pacific Network
  • ClimSystem Limited/SimCLIM
  • REDAS Software

Objectives & Goals:

  • Identify parameters for the review and revision of CLUPs;
  • Modify procedural guidelines for CLUP preparation to allow for the integration of climate change considerations;
  • Develop capacity building program to enrich the planning skills of local government planners and other key stakeholders;
  • Strengthen the institutional structure for CLUP preparation and implementation; and
  • Draw out plan for the institutionalization of the tested framework for nationwide implementation

Strategies & Processes/Methods:

  • Assessment of the extent to which the existing CLUPs can respond to current and future natural and anthropogenic threats to development and public safety and identify areas for improvement (i.e., policy framework, institutional set up, technical procedures) to increase responsiveness of CLUPs to all threats and factors constraining local sustainable development goals (i.e., food security, water security, poverty reduction, natural resources conservation, etc).
  • Drafting and testing of a protocol for the review and revision of CLUPs in selected LGUs including process documentation that will serve as basis for the finalization of the revised guidelines and procedures for the preparation of CLUPs; and
  • Institutionalization of the finalized revised guidelines and procedures for nationwide implementation.


  • Integrated and watershed-based assessment and planning framework for comprehensive treatment of all development concerns and issues in the context of a changing climate finalized;
  • Inputs from stakeholder participants from 720 barangays ensured outputs responsive to their issues and concerns; and
  • Science-based protocols for decision making for the integration of DRR/CCA finalized.


  • Joint Program United Nations MDG-F1656 Albay Demonstration Site

Plan & Sustainability:

The weeklong training is expected to develop among the participants an understanding of the concepts of climate change impacts and vulnerability; participatory techniques and other methodologies on climate change impacts and vulnerability assessment; ability to use, maintain and update the Albay SimCLIM software package; and ability to prepare a data gathering and climate change impacts and vulnerability assessment plan for the two case study sites of the project.

Key Barriers Met, Lessons Learned, Replicability/Transferability:

With the decentralization policy, the Philippine local government units, particularly at the provincial level, are at the forefront of actions for responding to the climate change impacts and risks. It is therefore necessary to enable them to conduct climate change impacts and vulnerability assessment in their respective jurisdictions to enhance their preparedness strategies. A close collaboration among scientists and researchers, local government units and the local communities, with the aid of a computer modeling system, is crucial to ensure a comprehensive assessment of all risks, threats and needs.

Other Comments & Additional Information:

Continuing training on DRR and CCA, learning experience, and resources for such training are necessary for sustainability.


Brief Description:

This project was designed to bring climate change issues, impacts and responses into the consciousness of this and the next generation of Albayanons and the entire country by integrating such in the academic curriculum of primary and secondary schools.


  1. Training of Trainers (Aug 2008) held at Bicol University, Legazpi City for selected key teachers, principals, supervisors and superintendents of the Department of Education in the 4 divisions of Albay;
  2. Drafting, review, revision and finalization of lesson exemplars in all the subject areas in the elementary and secondary levels through write shops and in collaboration with education experts of DepEd Central Office, University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) and the intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change experts and scientists;
  3. Training of Trainers’ Teaching demonstration simulation of final outputs; and
  4. Reproduction of the demonstrated lesson exemplars for use by the different schools in Albay.

Major Partners: Department of Education, Albay Division, Bicol Regional Office and Central Office;             University of the Philippines Los Banos (UPLB),        Joint Program MDG Achievement Fund:1656, Albay Demo; Spanish Government-AECID and United Nations Development Program (UNDP)

Result/Product: Compendium of demonstrated lesson exemplars for primary and secondary and tertiary levels


Background Information:

Type of organization: Government


Products & Services:  Technical support for government plans and programs in CCA and DRR


Head of Organization & Title:

Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda, Ph.D.

First United Nations Senior Global Champion on CCA & DRR

Head Office Address: Albay Provincial Capitol, Legazpi City, Philippines

Website:  www.albaycirca.org


Contact Person & Position:

Manuel “Nong” C. Rangasa

CIRCA Executive Director and Project Manager, United Nations Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund:1656 Albay Demo(UNDP)

Executive Director, Local Climate Change Adaptation for Development (LCCAD) and Resident Trainer, Mentor, Coach on Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP) Formulation in the Philippines

2016 Office of the President Climate Change Commission (CCC) Focal Person to the:

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Climate Change Committees of the Senate and the House of Representatives, Regional Development Council (RDC), and the Leagues of Governors, City and Municipal Mayors and Barangay Captains of the Philippines

Mobile:                                    +639272556030   or 09984757928

Office Telephone No. :      +639176370866

Email address:  nongrangasa.lccad@yahoo.com or lccad.org@gmail.com

Facebook: LCCAD Philippines

Twitter: @LCCADph

WordPress: LCCAD Philippines