Part 3: The Environment Code of the Province of South Cotabato


SECTION 92. SCOPE OF POWERS. In the exercise of their respective mandates, the:

A. Provincial Government of South Cotabato shall:

1.Provide technical assistance, enforcement and information management in support of municipal and city climate change action plans; (Sec. 14, RA 9729)
2.Maximize the inter-local government unit collaboration in the conduct of climate-related activities;
3.Appoint the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO) for the formulation and implementation of the provincial climate change action plans; (Sec. 18, RA 9729)
4.Allocate from its annual appropriations adequate funds for the formulation, development and implementation, including training, capacity building and direct intervention of its climate change programs and plans; (Sec. 18, RA 9729)
5.Conduct, through the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO), public awareness campaigns on the effects of climate change and energy-saving solutions to mitigate these effects, and initiatives, through educational and training programs and micro-credit schemes, especially for women in rural areas;
6.Regularly update its action plan to reflect changing social, economic and environmental conditions and emerging issues;
7.Furnish the Climate Change Commission established under RA 9729 with copies of its action plans and all subsequent amendments, modifications and revisions thereof, within one (1) month from its adoption;
8.Mobilize and allocate necessary personnel, resources and logistics to effectively implement its climate change action plans; and
9.Coordinate with the national government agencies concerned in technical and financial assistance to LGUs, in accomplishing Local Climate Change Actions Plans.

B.City and Municipal Governments shall:

1.Consider climate change adaptation and mitigation as one of their regular functions;
2.Formulate, plan and implement their respective climate change action plans consistent with the provincial action plan;
3.Appoint the person responsible for the formulation and implementation of their local action plan; (Sec. 18, RA 9729)
4.Conduct, through their respective City/MunicipaL Environment and Natural Resources Office (C/MENRO), public awareness campaigns on the effects of climate change and energy-saving solutions to mitigate these effects, and initiatives, through educational and training programs and micro-credit schemes, especially for women in rural areas;
5.Regularly update their respective action plan to reflect changing social, economic and environmental conditions and emerging issues;
6.Furnish the Climate Change Commission established under RA 9729 with copies of its action plans and all subsequent amendments, modifications and revisions thereof, within one (1) month from its adoption; and
7.Mobilize and allocate necessary personnel, resources and logistics to effectively implement its action plans on climate change.

C.Barangay Government shall:

1.Be directly involved with the city and municipal governments in prioritizing
climate change issues and in identifying and implementing best practices and other solutions; and

2.Mobilize and allocate necessary personnel, resources and logistics to effectively implement its climate change action plans.

SECTION 93. OPERATIVE PRINCIPLES. Cognizant of its share in the country’s participation to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC),
the provincial government adopts the following:

a.The ultimate objective of stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system;
b.Precautionary principle shall be the guide of all decision-making in climate risk management.;
c.Climate change and disaster risk reduction are closely interrelated and effective disaster risk reduction will enhance climate change adaptive capacity.; and
d.The concept of climate change shall be systematically integrated in various phases of local policy formulation, development plans, poverty reduction strategies and other development tools and techniques by all LGUs.

SECTION 94. LOCAL CLIMATE CHANGE ACTION PLAN. The local government units shall be the frontline agencies in the formulation, planning and implementation of climate change action plans in their respective areas consistent with the provisions of the Local Government Code, the United Nation Framework on Climate Change, and the National Climate Change Action Plan. (Section 14, RA 9729). In the development and implementation of the Local Climate Change Action Plans, the LGUs shall coordinate with the national government agencies, local disaster coordinating councils, non-government organizations (NGOs), civic organizations, academe, people’s organizations, the private and corporate sectors and other concerned stakeholder groups.

SECTION 95. FRAMEWORK STRATEGY AND PROGRAM ON CLIMATE CHANGE AND DISASTER RISK REDUCTION. Consistent with the National Framework Strategy, the LGUs shall formulate their respective Local Plan and Program on Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction as basis for planning, research and development, extension and monitoring of activities to protect vulnerable communities. The Plan shall be formulated based on climate change and disaster vulnerabilities, specific adaptation needs and mitigation potentials. (Sec. 14, RA 9729)

SECTION 96. FUNDING ALLOCATION FOR CLIMATE CHANGE AND DISASTER RISK REDUCTION. Local Government Units (LGUs) shall appropriate and use the amount from their Internal Revenue Allotment necessary to effectively implement the local plan on climate change, any provision in the Local Government Code to the contrary notwithstanding.



SECTION 97. SCOPE OF POWERS. In the exercise of their inherent powers, the local government units shall develop and promote programs on ecological tourism industry and regulate and/or supervise tourism-related business concessions and their operation in accordance with existing applicable laws and issuances.

SECTION 98. OPERATIVE PRINCIPLES. The pursuit of ecological tourism shall be guided by the following operative principles:

A.Ecological tourism is a strategy for:

1.The promotion of the natural attractions of the province as a tourist destination;

2.The preservation of the unique and cultural heritage;

3.The creation of employment opportunities for local residents and ground stakeholders;

4.The generation of revenues for the local government units and the communities; and

5.The conservation of biological diversity.

B.The prior consultation and consent of the affected community in an assembly called for the purpose shall be the primary consideration in the operation and/or utilization of ecological tourism sites. (E.O No. 774, Sec. 16.c & Sec.16.d; LGC, Sec. 2.c; Sec. 2.i, Tourism Act of 2009)

SECTION 99. COMMUNITY-BASED ECOLOGICAL TOURISM. The Provincial Government hereby adopts community-based ecological tourism to promote community entrepreneurship and biodiversity conservation subject to guidelines which may hereinafter be promulgated.

SECTION 100. SELECTION OF ECOLOGICAL TOURISM SITES. The Provincial Government, in collaboration with the Department of Tourism, DENR, concerned LGUs and stakeholders shall determine, authorize and prescribe parameters for ecological tourism sites visitation and development.

SECTION 101. PREPARATION OF PROVINCIAL ECOLOGICAL TOURISM FRAMEWORK PLAN. In the interest of environmental conservation, the Governor shall direct the development of a Provincial Ecological Tourism Framework Plan based on the ecological tourism standards and guidelines for the development of sustainable ecological tourism. In the absence of a city/municipal eco-tourism plan, the Provincial Government may provide technical assistance for the drafting of the said plan. No ecological tourism sites shall be authorized for commercial visitation, development or operation without a duly approved city/municipal ecological tourism plan.

SECTION 102. PROVINCIAL ECOLOGICAL TOURISM PLAN REVIEW. The Provincial Ecological Tourism Council (PETC) shall be created to review the Provincial Eco-Tourism Plan taking into consideration the following:

A.Prioritization of existing ecological tourism sites for development on the basis of the following factors: potential;
2.infrastructure investment requirement;
3.economic viability;
4.strategic position for tourism expansion; participation;
6.Biodiversity conservation;
7.environmental rehabilitation advantage; and
8.institutional arrangement with LGUs, NGAs and CSOs

B. Determination of appropriate type of development and management for each prioritized site.

C. Regulation and control of the ecological tourism activities.

SECTION 103. ACCREDITATION SYSTEM. The Provincial Government through the Provincial Ecological Tourism Council shall institute a system for accreditation of tourist guides, drivers, escorts, promoters, service providers and coaches and conveyances including the rules and regulations governing the issuance and renewal of licenses and the related fees and charges thereof.


SECTION 104. SCOPE OF POWERS. In the exercise of their inherent powers, duties and functions, the local chief executives shall ensure appropriate preventive and mitigating measures to safeguard the environment in the implementation of projects or undertakings.

SECTION 105. OPERATIVE PRINCIPLES. The Provincial Government recognizes the need of an effective instrument for ensuring environmental soundness of all development projects to achieve a balance between economic growth and community development and ecosystem in the province. As such, the Province adopts the following:

a.The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) system shall be strictly required in the preparation, identification and implementation of all development projects covered by the system;

b.The right of people to safe water and clean air shall be given paramount consideration in the identification and implementation of development projects; and

c.The need for free-prior informed-consent of affected communities by the proposed development programs shall be secured aside from the Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC). (DENR Circular 08-2007)

SECTION 106. VALIDATION OF SCOPING SESSIONS. The Governor, through the Provincial Environment Management Office (PEMO), shall participate in the scoping sessions and assist EIA preparers and EMB in identifying and validating the stakeholders.

SECTION 107. CONSISTENCY OF THE PROPOSED EIS DOCUMENT TO THE PROVINCIAL POLICIES AND PLANS. The Governor, through the PEMO, shall ensure that the proposed project or undertaking shall adhere to the over-all policies and plans of the Provincial Government relative to the environmental conservation and protection. This shall be undertaken in the early stage of the EIA process particularly during the conduct of scoping.

SECTION 108. SOCIAL ACCEPTABILITY. The acceptability of the environmental impact of a project or undertaking can only be fully determined through meaningful public participation and a transparent EIS process. In determining social acceptability, the provincial government shall consider, among others, the following factors:

a.ecological/environmental soundness of the proposed project;
b.effective and open public participation process;
c.resolution of conflicts;
d.promotion of social and inter-generational equity and poverty alleviation;
e.participation and approval of concerned LGUs;
f.effective environmental monitoring and evaluation; and
g.mitigation and enhancement measures.

SECTION 109. ENDORSEMENT OF PROJECTS OR UNDERTAKINGS. Projects or undertakings requiring EIA shall secure an endorsement through a Sanggunian resolution from the LGU/s at all levels.

SECTION 110. REVIEW OF THE IEE OR EIS DOCUMENT. When public interest so dictates or for other compelling reasons, the Provincial Governor, through the PENRO, shall convene the Provincial EIA Review Committee (PEIARC) to validate the IEE/EIS through appropriate methods such as ocular inspection/site visits and technical studies conducted by experts and relevant institutions prior to endorsing the project or undertaking through a resolution to the DENR-EMB.

SECTION 111. COMPOSITION OF THE PROVINCIAL EIA REVIEW COMMITEE. There is hereby created an interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral Provincial EIA Review Committee (PEIARC) which shall be responsible for undertaking the substantive review of the IEE/EIS submitted by the proponent. However, only accredited reviewer can be a member of the PEIARC.

SECTION 112. LAW ENFORCEMENT. The Governor, through the EIA Multi-Sectoral Monitoring Team, and in coordination with the DENR, shall ensure the strict enforcement of existing environmental laws, rules and regulations and mitigating measures provided in the EIS.

SECTION 113. COMPLIANCE FOR PROJECTS COVERED BY THE EIA SYSTEM. The DENR, through its EMB, shall furnish the Governor list of projects and establishments covered by the EIA system.

SECTION 114. ENVIRONMENTALLY CRITICAL AREAS. The Provincial Government, in close collaboration with the DENR – EMB and other government agencies, shall identify the location of Environmentally Critical Areas (ECAs) for the integration of the identified ECAs in the Provincial Physical Framework Plan.

SECTION 115. ENVIRONMENTAL GUARANTEE FUND (EGF). The Provincial Government, through the Multipartite Monitoring Team (MMT) Executive Committee, shall participate in the negotiation and review of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) by and between the project developer and concerned parties for the establishment of an Environmental Guarantee Fund (EGF) for projects posing significant risks to answer for damage to life, health, property and the environment caused by such risk, or for those requiring rehabilitation or restoration measures.


SECTION 116. SCOPE OF POWERS. In the exercise of their powers, duties and functions, the Provincial Governor, City/Municipal Mayors and Punong Barangays shall adopt measures to safeguard and conserve the environment in general. Local government units shall adopt measures for the protection of the environment in relation to the development and generation of electric power from indigenous and renewable resources such as geothermal, solar, hydro and other natural sources.

SECTION 117. OPERATIVE PRINCIPLES. The Provincial Government recognizes the fact that it has varied renewable energy sources such as geothermal, solar, hydroelectric and other natural sources, and that unless appropriate proactive measures are put in place, energy development in the province will have irreparable damage to the environment and to the socio-cultural well-being of the people. Thus, energy utilization and management in the Province of South Cotabato shall be guided by the following:

a.The free and favorably informed consent of the people and the prior endorsement through a sanggunian resolution from the LGUs at all levels shall be the paramount consideration in carrying out all energy development initiatives in the Province of South Cotabato.

b.Every national agency or government-owned or controlled corporation authorizing or those involved in the planning and implementation of any project or program shall be required to consult with the local government units, civil society organizations and other sectors concerned and explain the goals and objectives of the project or program, its impact upon the people and the community in terms of environmental or ecological balance, and the measures that will be undertaken to prevent or minimize the adverse effects thereof pursuant to Section 26 of Republic Act No. 7160;

c.Environmental laws, rules and regulations shall always govern the generation, distribution and transmission activities of power producers in the province;

d.Host communities shall enjoy the right to an equitable share from the wealth generated from the utilization of the province’s energy resources; and

e.The primary consideration of the province in entering into agreements with power developers shall be the comparative cost advantage which the end-users of the province shall enjoy over those outside the province.

SECTION 118. RESOURCE UTILIZATION. Cognizant of the vital role of electric power in economic development, the Provincial Government shall encourage the development and utilization of indigenous and renewable energy sources such as solar, natural gas, biomass and hydropower for immediate and future applications.
SECTION 119. MANAGEMENT ZONE. Power producers are required to establish, protect, maintain and develop management zones.


a.COMMUNITIES. Power generation facilities and/or energy resources development projects shall provide the inhabitants of host communities financial benefits and lower electricity cost either through subsidy and/or non-subsidy schemes.

b.LGUs. Host LGUs shall be entitled to an equitable and just share of the proceeds derived from the development and utilization of the national wealth.

c.PROVINCE. The Provincial Government hereby adopts the “One Province, One Electric Cooperative” policy.

Further, it shall enter into agreement with power generation companies and/or energy resource developers to commit funds to be managed by the Provincial Government for:

1.Research and Development;
2.Consumer Welfare;
3.Monitoring and Evaluation; and
4.Fund for affected communities.

SECTION 121. EDUCATION AND PROTECTION. The Provincial Government, in coordination with concerned national agencies, local government units, service utilities, academe, tri - media, civil societies and consumer groups or associations, shall undertake continuing education, information and consumer welfare and protection programs for energy sector consumers.


SECTION 122. SCOPE OF POWERS. In the exercise of their inherent powers, duties and functions, the local government units shall adopt adequate measures to safeguard and conserve land, mineral, fresh water, forest and other resources pursuant to Republic Act No. 7160 and other related laws and issuances.

SECTION 123. OPERATIVE PRINCIPLES. Land Use Planning shall be based on the following operative principles:

a.Watershed planning and disaster risk reduction approaches shall be paramount in the preparation of Comprehensive Land Use Plans (CLUPs) based on barangay land use plans;

b.The formulation and updating of CLUPs shall be based on land suitability assessment without prejudice to the environment;

c.Utmost precaution against the following conditions shall be considered in the conversion or reclassification of land:

1.soil erosion, siltation and sedimentation, and destruction of critical habitats;

2.reduction of agricultural lands beyond the limits prescribed by law;

3.destruction of fishery grounds and the decline in fish catch; and

4.destruction of natural heritage assets due to mining and quarrying activities in environmentally critical areas.

d.Unless otherwise identified as eco-tourism sites, river banks, buffer zones and other public easements shall not be subject to human exploitation or manipulation;

e.The rights of the indigenous people in their ancestral domain shall be protected;

f.Appropriate management and maintenance of duly classified wetlands and production forest ensures sustainability, productivity and stability;

g.Programs and projects affecting land use implemented within the territorial jurisdiction shall be co-managed by the LGU and respective national agencies; and

h.Transparency, accountability and participatory process in the preparation of the CLUP shall be strictly observed.

SECTION 124. CLUP FORMULATION. The local government units shall formulate and update their respective CLUPs in conformity with the standards and guidelines prescribed by the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board (HLURB) and the Provincial Physical Framework Plan.

SECTION 125. LAND USE RECLASSIFICATION. The local government units may cause the reclassification of agricultural lands where the land ceases to be economically feasible or sound for agricultural purposes as determined by the Department of Agriculture, or where land shall have substantially greater economic value for residential, commercial or industrial uses as determined by the Sanggunian concerned. All land reclassified as non-agricultural by virtue of the CLUP are hereby exempt from the Department of Agrarian Reform proceedings.
SECTION 126. CLUP REVIEW AND APPROVAL. The Sangguniang Panlalawigan shall review and approve the comprehensive land use plans enacted through zoning ordinance of component cities and municipalities. The CLUP technical review shall be conducted to:

a.Ensure that the land use plans of component cities and municipalities are consistent with the Provincial Physical Framework Plan (PPFP);

b.Recommend solutions to settle disputes among component units over alternative uses of land resources; and

c.Promote community-based programs for sustainable development.

SECTION 127. PROVINCIAL LAND USE COMMITTEE (PLUC). The PLUC shall assist the Sangguniang Panlalawigan in reviewing the Comprehensive Land Use Plans of component cities and municipalities. For the purpose of policy coordination and uniformity in operation direction, the PLUC shall be under the Provincial Development Council. Any local planning and development coordinator, other officials of component units and field officers of national government agencies operating in the province or region may be called upon by the PLUC to assist in the formulation of the said land use plans. Among others, it shall be the duty of the PLUC to:

a.Call upon the concerned City Planning and Development Coordinator (CPDC) or Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator (MPDC) and their respective City or Municipal Land Use Committee (C/MLUC) whenever their respective land use plans are deliberated on by the committee; and

b.Submit its findings and recommendations to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan through the Chairman, Committee on City or Municipal Affairs.

SECTION 128. COMPOSITION OF THE PLUC. The PLUC shall be composed of the Provincial Planning and Development Coordinator as chairman, the Provincial Agriculturist, Provincial Assessor, the PEMO, Development Management Officer of the South Cotabato Provincial Investment and Promotion Center, representative/s of civil society organization that are represented in the Provincial Development Council and representatives from the concerned national government agencies as members.



SECTION 129. INCENTIVES AND AWARDS SYSTEM. The Provincial Government shall adopt an incentives and awards system to recognize local government units, agencies, organizations and individuals that have undertaken outstanding and innovative projects, techniques, initiatives or activities in the conservation of the natural resources and ecosystem of the Province.


SECTION 130. SPECIAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROGRAMS. There shall be established special conservation and/or development programs and projects addressing specific environmental concerns aimed to accomplish long-term initiatives, such as:

A.South Cotabato Environment Village and Provincial Forest and Eco-Tourism Park to strengthen the community within the reservation and protected area that shall serve as showcase of indigenous heritage and culture to promote tourism. The occupants of the village shall be an integral part of the eco-tourism park. Its sub-projects may include the following:

1.Lingap-hayop Conservation Project to protect and conserve the different species of endangered fauna including eagle, civet and tarsier sanctuary.

2.Butterfly Farm Dome and Orchidarium for the conservation of different species of butterflies and endemic orchids.

3.Botanical Garden to showcase different species and varieties of flora.

B.Caves Preservation Program which shall encompass the safeguarding of the existing wildlife, creatures and conservation of natural habitat and formations including archaeological , speleological and paleontological remains.

C.Springs and Waterfalls Conservation Program which deals with the conservation of the existing springs and waterfalls of the Province.

D.Rivers, Streams and Creeks Conservation and Rehabilitation Program which focuses on the protection from pollution, denudation and soil erosion through riverbank rehabilitation and vegetative means and provision of easements.

E.Lakes and Waterfalls Development Program which shall develop the marshes, lakes and waterfalls of the province. Communities surrounding these bodies of water shall be partners of the government to achieve sustainable and mass-based programs.

F.Resorts Development Program which shall encourage the development of environment-friendly resorts as avenues for the promotion of ecological awareness and advocacy campaign, natural habitat conservation, proper waste management and other similar undertakings to further promote healthful ecology.

G.“Luntiang-South Cotabato” Program which shall provide a greener and healthier environment through massive reforestation and afforestation. The PEMO shall identify areas for community-based reforestation.

H.“Grado Ko, Tanim Ko at Alagaan Ko” Program which shall require all public and private grade school pupils, high school and college students to plant a number of trees equivalent to their educational level, i.e. Grade 1 – 1 tree, First Year High School – 7 trees, College Freshmen – 11 trees in designated or preferred area.

I.Establishment of Agro-Forest Nurseries for each city/municipality.

J.Establishment of Seed Bank for storage, propagation of endemic and indigenous seeds and seedlings as a backbone strategy in the Province’s reforestation and afforestation.

K.“Bantay Kinaiyahan” is a community-based program which shall be established to promote vigilance in the protection and conservation of the environment among the local residents.

L. Sloping Agricultural Land Technology or SALT shall require the gradual adoption of the SALT approach in all sloping agricultural areas.


SECTION 131. FOREST RESOURCES. Under Article I of Chapter II, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Cutting, gathering, collection, removing or selling of natural growing trees from forest land, alienable and disposable lands and from private lands;

b.Use of unregistered or unlicensed chainsaws and similar tree-felling equipment unless a current and valid license or permit for the use thereof is issued by authorized agencies;

c.Operation of sawmills and other wood processing plants without the required permit to operate;

d.Hunting, destroying or mere possession of any plant, animal or other forest product both living and non-living and other species considered endangered or threatened pursuant to existing laws; and

e.Use of unregistered or unlicensed hunting paraphernalia such as airguns, shotguns, and similar devices unless covered by a valid permit.

SECTION 132. MINERAL AND OTHER QUARRY RESOURCES. Under Article II of Chapter II, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Quarrying and mining activities without a permit or license duly issued by the Governor or appropriate agency having authority and jurisdiction thereto;

b.Presentation of any false application, declaration or evidence to the government or publishes or causes to be published any prospectus or other information containing any false statement relating to quarrying and mining operation;

c.Extraction or removal of quarry materials within public water supply within a distance of one kilometer radius from the boundaries of water source established and historical sites and any public or private works or structures; (Ordinance No. 8, Series of 2003)

d.Extraction or removal of quarry material within the fifty-meter distance from riverbanks and tributaries and within one kilometer from bridges and dams upstream and downstream; and

e.Preventing or obstructing the holder of any permit, agreement or lease from undertaking quarrying operations without justifiable cause.

SECTION 133. WATER RESOURCES. Under Article III of Chapter II, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Discharging wastewater and sewage system without adequate and effective treatment facilities;

b.Discharging treated or untreated industrial or domestic sewage into potable water source and water suitable for marine life;

c.Building, installing or using any equipment concealing an effluent;

d.Constructing houses and other physical structures within the lakes or riverbanks except for areas identified by the CLUP as multiple use or buffer zones;

e.Developing a stream, lake, waterfalls, marshland or pond for recreational or commercial purposes without the necessary permit from the National Water Resources Board and the local government unit concerned in addition to an Environmental Compliance Certificate;

f.Raising or lowering of the water level of a stream, river, lake, marsh or pond or draining of the same without the necessary government clearance and/or permit;

g.Water impounding prejudicial to downstream or upstream communities; and

h.Drilling of well for commercial and industrial purposes without a permit from the National Water Resources Board and the necessary clearances issued by the concerned local government units.

SECTION 134. INLAND FRESHWATER RESOURCES. Under Article IV of Chapter II, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Fishing through the use of explosives, noxious or poisonous substances and electricity;
b.Use of fine mesh net;
c.Fishing in over-fished area and during closed season;
d.Fishing in fishery reserves, refuge and sanctuaries; and
e.Fishing or taking rare, threatened of endangered flora and fauna species.

SECTION 135. WILDLIFE, GENETIC RESOURCES AND BIODIVERSITY. Under Article VI of Chapter II, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Exploitation, hunting and unauthorized collection of endangered species;
b.Unauthorized bio-prospecting;
c.Transfer and unauthorized sale of seeds from the seed bank; and
d.Sale of flora and fauna from the protected areas.

SECTION 136. ECOLOGICAL SOLID WASTE/WATER MANAGEMENT. Under Article Chapter III, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Littering in public places and improper disposal of garbage and other form of uncleanliness pursuant to Presidential Decree No. 825, otherwise known as the “Garbage Disposal Law of 1975” and Presidential Decree 856, otherwise known as the “Code of Sanitation of the Philippines”;
b.Construction of dumpsites or industrial settlements and waste treatment plants within one (1) kilometer from rivers or any water bodies pursuant to existing laws;
c.Dumping or disposing of waste into any body of water where waste are likely to be washed into the water; and
d.Other prohibited acts as cited under Republic Act 9003, otherwise known as the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 and similar laws, ordinances and issuances, such as:

1. Open burning of solid waste;

2.Squatting in dumpsites and landfills;

3.Open dumping, burying of biodegradable and non-biodegradable materials in flood prone areas;

4.Manufacture, distribution or use of non-environmentally acceptable packaging materials;

5.Dumping of toxic substances, nuclear and hazardous waste; and

6.Construction of any establishment within two hundred (200) meters from dump sites or sanitary landfills.

SECTION 137. AIR QUALITY, WATER QUALITY AND NOISE POLLUTION MANAGEMENT. Under Article II of Chapter III, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.The operation of any vehicle that discharges air pollutants above the prescribed levels;
b.Burning of industrial, agricultural and hospital wastes;
c.The processing, sale, distribution, use and disposal of persistent organic pollutants;
d.Generating noise and vibration levels which are not within the acceptable noise standards;
e.Smoking in non-designated smoking places and conveyances; and
f.Misdeclaration and manipulation of emission test procedure and results.

SECTION 138. ECOLOGICAL TOURISM. Under Article I of Chapter IV, the following acts shall be prohibited and punishable:

a.Developing ecological tourism sites, such as streams, lakes, marshlands, ponds, caves, mountain trails, hot springs, camp sites, springs, sanctuaries and waterfalls and other eco-tourism potential resources for recreational or commercial purposes, without appropriate permit from the agencies concerned;
b.Unlicensed and unaccredited tourist guides, drivers, escorts, promoters, service providers, coaches, conveyances and other tourism-related services;
c.Destruction and unauthorized collection and selling of wild flora and fauna in ecological tourism sites;
d.Charging of exorbitant fees to tourists and visitors;
e.Abusive behavior towards tourists and visitors and vice-versa;
g.Deliberate and unauthorized entry to restricted areas;
h.Desecration of sacred cultural , archeological and historical areas and sites; and
i.Indiscriminate disposal of garbage and wastes;


SECTION 139. GENERAL PROVISIONS. The “person” or “persons” as used in this Chapter shall refer to individuals, corporations or entities who may be subjected to civil, penal or monetary liability and penalized as imposed, at the discretion of a competent court.

The penalty provided herein shall be in addition to the penalty that may be provided by any other law or ordinances, provided however, that the prosecution or law enforcer shall charge the offender or violator with the law providing a heavier penalty in case it appears that a single act is punishable by two or more laws, ordinance and provisions thereof with different penalties or in case filing more than one charges may amount to double jeopardy.

SECTION 140. FINES AND PENALTIES. Any person found guilty of violation of any provision of this Code shall be punished with an imprisonment of not exceeding one (1) year or a fine of not more than P5,000 or both in the discretion of the court, without prejudice to the filing of the appropriate administrative, civil or criminal action.

SECTION 141. ADMINISTRATIVE SANCTIONS. Government officials and employees who fail to comply with and enforce the provisions of this Code and its implementing rules and regulations shall be charged administratively in accordance with existing laws, rules and regulations.

SECTION 142. OTHER SANCTIONS. Violation of Sections 89, par. 2 and 126 – 133 hereof shall be penalized in accordance with the provisions of this Code. In addition to confiscation and/or cancellation of permits or licenses, closure of establishments and/or replevin, violators shall also be liable to any damages and compensation. In the case of associations, partnerships or corporations, the president and the governing board thereof shall be responsible for the acts committed by such entity.



SECTION 143. CREATION. The South Cotabato Ecological Solid Waste Management Board, hereinafter referred to as SCESWMB, is hereby established pursuant to Republic Act No. 9003, otherwise known as The Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000.
SECTION 144. POWERS AND FUNCTIONS. The SCESWMB shall prepare, submit and oversee the implementation of plans for the safe and sanitary management of solid waste generated in areas within the province.

SECTION 145. MEETINGS. Regular meetings of the SCESWMB shall be at least twice a year. Special meetings may be called by the Chairperson as the need arises or at the request of at least four (4) members thereof; provided, that such notice of special meeting shall be served at least three (3) days before the scheduled date.

SECTION 146. COMPOSITION OF THE SCESWMB. The SCESWMB shall be composed of the following:

a. All the mayors of the component cities and municipalities;
b. One (1) representative from the Sangguniang Panlalawigan to be represented by the chairperson either by the Committee on Environment or the Committee on Health or their representatives to be nominated by the presiding officer;
a.The Provincial Health and/or Provincial General Services Officer, whomever may be recommended by the Governor;
b.The Provincial Environment Management Officer;
c.The Provincial Engineer;
d.Congressional representative from each congressional district within the province;
e.Representative from the recycling industry, if there is any;
f.Representative from the manufacturing or packaging industry, if there is any;
g.Representative from each concerned government agency relevant to technical and marketing expertise as may be determined by the Board; and
h.At least three (3) representatives from NGO.


SECTION 147. THE SOUTH COTABATO RIVER SYSTEMS. The Provincial Government shall initiate programs and enact ordinances that aim to protect, preserve, rehabilitate and develop all the river systems within the Province of South Cotabato.

SECTION 148. THE LAKE SEBU REHABILITATION, CONSERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL (LSRCDC). The Provincial Government shall continue to support, strengthen and enable the Lake Sebu Rehabilitation, Conservation and Development Council created under Ordinance No. 06, series of 2001.

SECTION 149. ALLAH VALLEY LANDSCAPE DEVELOPMENT ALLIANCE (AVLDA). Pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement entered into by the Provincial Government with concerned LGUs of South Cotabato and Sultan Kudarat, the regional offices of DENR, DPWH, NCIP, NIA and DILG, with the coalition of Social Development Organizations, the Province shall continue to support and lead in the pursuit of the mandate of AVLDA for the rehabilitation, development and management of the Allah Valley Watershed and Landscape.

SECTION 150. LAKE HOLON CONSERVATION COUNCIL (LHCC). The Provincial Government shall adopt and support the Lake Holon Conservation Council (LHCC) for the preservation, management and development of Lake Holon (Lake Maughan).

SECTION 151. MT. MATUTUM PROTECTED LANDSCAPE. The Provincial Government shall work closely with the Protected Area Management Board (PAMB) in the management of the Mt. Matutum Protected Landscape and shall support government and private initiatives for its rehabilitation and development.

SECTION 152. SOUTH COTABATO AIRSHED GOVERNING BOARD. Subject to the provisions of RA 8749, also known as the Clean Air Act and its Implementing Rules and Regulations, the Provincial Government shall support the South Cotabato Airshed Governing Board.


SECTION 153. CREATION. The Governor, through an executive order, shall create an interdisciplinary-multi-partite Environmental Impact Assessment Monitoring Team, the officers of which shall be elected from among the members thereof.

SECTION 154. FUNCTIONS. The functions, duties and responsibilities of the Team shall be as follows:

a.Monitor the implementation of projects within the context of the approved project proposal and conditions embodied in the EIS;
b.Monitor the level of proponent’s compliance on conditions set by the DENR on ECC and permits issued to projects operating in the province;
c.Gather relevant information to determine cause of environmental damage and respond to public complaints about the subject project;
d.Prepare, integrate and disseminate monitoring status reports and undertake community education and information dissemination;
e.Participate in environmental law enforcement;
f.Conduct regular inventory of establishments operating in the province;
g.Submit proposed annual budget and periodic status reports to the Governor, through the PEMO; and
h.Exercise visitorial power over all industries operating in the Province of South Cotabato.

SECTION 155. COMPOSITION. Membership of the Multi-Partite Monitoring Team shall include the following:

1.A representative from each of the host municipal government, DENR, academe, concerned ground stakeholders, Chairman of Environmental Committee of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan;

2.Two (2) members from the private sector, who are on-call and on a project specific bases.

SECTION 156. SUBMISSION OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL COMPLIANCE CERTIFICATE (ECC). All industries, permittees/licensees are required to submit a copy of their Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) to the Environmental Impact Assessment Multi-partite Monitoring Team (EIA-MMT).



SECTION 157. SPECIAL EVENTS AND DAYS OF ACTION. The Provincial Government shall observe/celebrate/commemorate special events and days of action in coordination with all local government units, concerned government agencies and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), to raise the level of environmental awareness and consciousness among the people of South Cotabato.

SECTION 158. OTHER CELEBRATIONS. Other days/events not provided herein shall be observed subject to existing laws, rules and regulations.


SECTION 159. PROVINCE-WIDE TREE PLANTING DAY. There shall be a regular observance of a province-wide annual synchronized tree planting day activity every last week of June and November of every year to be spearheaded by the Provincial Government in coordination with other local government units, national government agencies, academe, civil societies and business communities in any of the established or identified communal or community-based forest projects in the province.

SECTION 160. LEAD AGENCY. The PEMO shall be the lead agency in the conduct of the Province-Wide Tree-Planting Day.


SECTION 161. OBSERVANCE. Pursuant to United Nations Resolution of 1972, the Provincial Government shall lead in the celebration of Earth Day every 22nd day of April of every year.

SECTION 162. OBSERVANCE. The Province shall observe the month of June of every year as the Environment Month to culminate and showcase the year-round activity thereby synchronizing all efforts in the protection, preservation and conservation of the province’s natural resources and ecosystems.

SECTION 163. ACTIVITIES. The Provincial Government, though the PEMO, shall conduct and/or undertake various activities in the observance of the environment month.


SECTION 164. OBSERVANCE. Pursuant to the Republic Act 9512 or the “National Environment Awareness and Education Act of 2008”, the Province shall observe November as Environmental Awareness Month to promote awareness on the role of natural resources in economic growth and the importance of environmental conservation and ecological balance towards sustained development.


SECTION 165. OBSERVANCE. The Province shall celebrate World Water Day on every 22nd of March of each year with appropriate and meaningful activities.


SECTION 166. OBSERVANCE. The International Day for the preservation of the Ozone Layer shall be celebrated within the Province every September 16 of every year with activities that will highlight concern and awareness for the protection of the ozone layer.


SECTION 167. OBSERVANCE. The whole month of November of each year is hereby declared as Clean Air Month Celebration with appropriate activities.



SECTION 168. TRANSFER OF ENVIRONMENTAL OFFICES, PROGRAMS AND PROJECTS TO PEMO. The PEMO shall assume all the existing programs, responsibilities, facilities and appropriations of the different provincial government offices engaged in watershed management, solid waste management, small scale mining, quarry regulation, integrated social forestry, eco-tourism, spring development and other concerns included in this Code. The personnel of the above-mentioned offices, projects and programs shall automatically become an integral part of the PEMO.

SECTION 169. VESTED RIGHTS. Rights and obligations existing on the date of effectivity of this Code and arising out of contracts shall be governed by the original terms and conditions of said contract or the law in force at the time such rights were vested.


SECTION 170. FUNDING/APPROPRIATION. The Provincial Government shall appropriate funds to ensure effective enforcement of this Code.

SECTION 171. IMPLEMENTING RULES AND REGULATIONS. The Governor through a Technical Working Group, shall formulate the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) necessary to effectively carry out the provisions of this Code within six (6) months from its approval.


SECTION 172. PRIOR CONSENT OF SANGGUNIANS. Private entities, government agencies and its instrumentalities are hereby required to secure prior consent of the concerned Sanggunians in the implementation and development of investment programs or projects affecting the environment.

Natural resources development, utilization or processing project, lease, license or agreement or usufruct permit shall not be issued by national government agencies without prior consultation with; and consent of; local government units, affected communities and stakeholders in the province.

SECTION 173. APPLICABILITY CLAUSE. All other matters not covered by this Code shall be governed by pertinent laws, rules and regulations.

SECTION 174. CONFLICTING PROVISIONS OF CHAPTERS. If the provisions of different Chapters are in conflict with each other, the provision of each Chapter shall prevail as to specified matters and questions involved therein.

SECTION 175. CONFLICTING PROVISIONS OF SECTIONS. If the provisions of the different Chapters are in conflict with each other, the provisions of the Section which is the last in point of sequence shall prevail.

SECTION 176. SEPARABILITY CLAUSE. If, for any reason, any provision of this Code is declared invalid or unconstitutional, all other provisions hereof not affected thereby shall continue to be in full force and effect.

SECTION 177. SPECIAL PROVISION. The Governor through a Technical Working Group (TWG), shall provide for the mandatory review of this Code after five (5) years of its effectivity and shall proposed for the amendment of the same to be submitted to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan and for the august Body to legislate amendatory provisions as the need arises.

SECTION 178. REPEALING CLAUSE. All ordinances, executive orders, resolution and other Provincial memoranda or rules inconsistent with the provisions of this Code are hereby repealed or modified accordingly.

SECTION 179. EFFECTIVITY CLAUSE. This Code shall take effect fifteen (15) days following the posting requirements and after its full publication compliance for three (3) consecutive issues in a local newspaper of general circulation within the Province of South Cotabato, whichever occurs later.

I HEREBY CERTIFY to the correctness of the foregoing resolution.

Vice Governor
Presiding Officer

Secretary to the Sanggunian


Provincial Governor



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