WETLANDS, MIGRATORY BIRDS R&D
City hosts international congress
Bacolod City is hosting the five-day East Asian-Australian Flyway Congress on Research and Development for Wetlands and Migratory Waterbirds in the Course of Climate Change.
The congress, held at L’Fisher Hotel until Oct. 11, is being conducted by the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
The congress ends a day before the Oct. 12 World Migratory Bird Day celebration.
Dr. Simplicia Pasicolan, lead organizer of the event and ERDB chief science research specialist in Urban Ecosystems Research Division, said the congress has four sub-themes – effects or impacts of climate change to wetlands and migratory waterbirds, appropriate management strategies on wetland habitat of waterbirds, adaptable enabling instruments in protecting wetland habitats along flyway, and frontline innovation and breakthroughs for sustainable urban future for people, wetlands and waterbirds.
Dr. Pasicolan said that through the Congress, ERDB hopes to strengthen partnership among EAAF states through the identification of R & D gaps and initiatives for the conservation of migratory birds and their wetland habitats in the face of climate change.
About 200 delegates are participating in the congress. Participants include environmentalists from Russia, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, United States, Cambodia, Japan and Pakistan.
EAAF is a route that supports migratory birds in their migration. It is home to over 50 million migratory waterbirds. It also includes 32 globally threatened species and 19 near threatened species. The Philippines serves as habitat to more than 80 species of migratory birds that visit the country every year.
Dr. Pasicola said that “the growing demand of water for both humans and animals could lead to water shortage. This could lead to the need to look for alternative sources of water which could dry our wetlands which are essential for migratory birds.”
Dr. Sofio Quintana, ERDB director, reiterated that with the devastating impact of climate change, now more than ever, “we need to work together toward the protection and conservation of these species and their habitats.”*
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Day of the Girl Child
It will be International Day of the Girl Child on Friday.
Observed since 2012, the day aims to highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face.
It also p romotes girls’ empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. The theme for this year’s celebration is, “Girl Force: Unscripted and Unstoppable”.
The United Nations recalls that nearly 25 years ago, about 30,000 women and men from nearly 200 countries arrived in Beijing, China for the Fourth World Conference on Women, determined to recognize the rights of women and girls as human rights. The conference culminated in the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action: the most comprehensive policy agenda for the empowerment of women.
In the years following, women pressed this agenda forward, leading global movements on issues ranging from sexual and reproductive health rights to equal pay. More girls today are attending and completing school, fewer are getting married or becoming mothers while still children and more are gaining the skills they need to excel in the future world of work.
Today, these movements have expanded. They are being organized by and for adolescent girls, and tackling issues like child marriage, education inequality, gender-based violence, climate change, self-esteem, and girls’ rights to enter places of worship or public spaces during menstruation. Girls are proving they are unscripted and unstoppable.
This year we will celebrate achievements by, with and for girls since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.
In 1995 at the World Conference on Women in Beijing countries unanimously adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action – the most progressive blueprint ever for advancing the rights of not only women but girls. The Beijing Declaration is the first to specifically call out girls’ rights.
On December 19, 2011, United Nations General Assembly adopted Resolution 66/170 to declare October 11 as the International Day of the Girl Child, to recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.
The International Day of the Girl Child focuses attention on the need to address the challenges girls face and to promote girls’ empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights.
Adolescent girls have the right to a safe, educated, and healthy life, not only during these critical formative years, but also as they mature into women. If effectively supported during the adolescent years, girls have the potential to change the world – both as the empowered girls of today and as tomorrow’s workers, mothers, entrepreneurs, mentors, household heads, and political leaders. An investment in realizing the power of adolescent girls upholds their rights today and promises a more equitable and prosperous future, one in which half of humanity is an equal partner in solving the problems of climate change, political conflict, economic growth, disease prevention, and global sustainability.
Girls are breaking boundaries and barriers posed by stereotypes and exclusion, including those directed at children with disabilities and those living in marginalized communities. As entrepreneurs, innovators and initiators of global movements, girls are creating a world that is relevant for them and future generations.*
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