Legal basis in the creation of PCSD
The Philippines has been swift in responding to the call of the Earth Summit to bring action at the local level in support of sustainable development. President Fidel V. Ramos by virtue of Executive Order No. 15 dated 01 September 1992 created the Philippine Council for Sustainable Development (PCSD) which provide the mechanism for attaining the principles of SD and thus assure its integration in the Philippine national policies, plans and programs that will involve all sectors of the society.
Further, in 5 July 1995 Memorandum Order No. 399 was issued to direct the operationalization and monitoring of the PA 21. Then, in 26 September 1996, Executive Order No. 370 was issued to strengthen the Council’s functions and structure through expanding Council membership to include several government agencies. Likewise, EO 370 mandated the DILG to coordinate and monitor SD localization at the LGU level.
In 10 December 2001, Executive Order 62 was issued to further strengthen the Council mandate and its core composition through streamlining government representation and expanding non-government membership base.
Powers and functions of the Council
The Council shall focus on issues that deal with the interplay of social, economic, and environmental concerns rather than solely sectoral matters that are already performed by the existing departments and agencies of the government. In particular, according to EO 62 (s. 2001), the Council is mandated to do the following:
- To review and ensure the implementation of the commitments made by the Philippines in the light of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) and its follow-up process;
- To act as the coordinating mechanism with the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) and the governing Bodies or Secretaries of other multilateral conventions, through the Department of Foreign Affairs (DOF);
- To establish guidelines and mechanisms that will ensure that the SD principles are embodied in the Rio Declaration, Agenda d 21, are integrated in the formulation of national, regional, and local development policies, plans, and programs;
- To formulate policies and recommend new actions to appropriate bodies on SD issues focusing on the environment dimensions of social and economic interventions in the social and economic dimensions of environmental interventions;
- To review and monitor plans, policies, program and legislation on SD to promote efficiency and timeliness of their execution and ensure consistency and coordination among the Legislative and Executive branches of government, local government units, civil society, business, labor and other concerned entities/sectors, and existing multi-stakeholder governance mechanisms;
- Provide policy advice to appropriate bodies on Environment and SD issues of national interest;
- To call on any and all government agencies, resource persons as necessary in the performance of its roles and functions;
- To catalyze the formation and institutionalization of LCSDs in close coordination with local authorities;
- To establish a networking mechanism to link the Council with local and international organizations involved in the sustainable development;
- To create, reorganize or abolish committees of the Council, ad-hoc or permanent, and to define their structure, functions and limitations;
- To submit its annual work program with actionable and time bounded targets and regularly report to the President the status of implementation and achievement of specific targets thereof; and
- To perform such acts which are necessary to carry out its mandated functions and responsibilities. Executive Order No. 15