CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the Pampanga River Basin Committee (PRBC) of the Central Luzon Regional Development Council (RDC III) hosted its third and final leg of its Roll-out of the Climate-Responsive Integrated Master Plan for the Pampanga River Basin (CRIMP-PRB) on October 29 via Zoom Platform, this time for the City and Municipal Local Government Units (LGUs).

The main objective of the webinar is to promote awareness at the grassroots and encourage broader participation at the LGU level in the implementation and assessment of the master plan. The said event was attended by sixty-five participants coming from various provincial, city and municipal LGUs from Central Luzon as well as representatives from PRBC member-agencies.

In her welcome remarks, RDC III Secretary and NEDA Region 3 OIC- Assistant Regional Director Susana S. Santiago, shared the history and rationale of the CRIMP-PRB and emphasized the importance of the role and contribution of the partner LGUs in the realization of the master plan’s objectives.

RDC III Vice Chairperson and NEDA Region 3 OIC-Regional Director Agustin C. Mendoza, acted as the resource person in the discussion of the master plan. He laid out the profile of the river basin and its development challenges, as well as the strategic plan and the status of the programs and projects in the CRIMP. He also underlined the conferment of Bagani ng Katubigan by the River Basin Control Office (RBCO) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) during the 2019 World Water Day Awards to PRBC for efficiently implementing the Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) Strategy in the Pampanga River Basin.

Also among the highlights of the webinar were the viewing of the official Audio-Visual Presentation (AVP) of the CRIMP-PRB and the conduct of an open forum wherein the participants were given the floor to ask queries and provide inputs on the master plan.

Engr. Marciano M. Franco, PRBC Lead Technical Secretariat thanked the participants, on behalf of PRBC Chairperson Governor Susan A. Yap of Tarlac, for attending the webinar despite of their busy schedules and amidst the pandemic. He encouraged everyone to share their learnings with their stakeholders in their area and to participate proactively in the projects and programs. He also highlighted that the PRBC is always open for any inputs, comments or suggestions from its various stakeholders.

The Climate-Responsive Integrated Master Plan for the Pampanga River Basin (CRIMP-PRB) 2016-2030, which was officially launched last 2019, is the official Integrated River Basin Management and Development Master Plan for the Pampanga River Basin. The master plan was initially rolled-out to PRBC member-agencies last June 2019 and to Central Luzon regional line agencies, provincial and highly-urbanized cities LGUs, and State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) last October 2019.

By: Al Jonnel L. Espiritu, RA, PRBC Secretariat, NEDA Region 3