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NR # 2997B
Lawmaker wants to regulate practice of environmental engineering
House Deputy Speaker and Zamboanga City Rep. Ma. Isabelle Climaco has filed a bill seeking to regulate the practice of environmental engineering to address the growing ecological problems in the country. “To address this growing environmental problem, Philippine environmental laws must be strictly complied with and this will require the expertise of environmental engineers,” said Climaco, author of House Bill 6794. Climaco said without environmental engineering, there will be a discharge of untreated wastewater in the different bodies of water which can cause water pollution. These water resources would be unsafe and polluted with emissions from smokestacks which cause air pollution and health problems, solid waste management problems and other environmental hazards. The bill defines environmental engineering as the application of science and engineering principles to protect and improve the environment, including but not limited to air, water and land resources, to provide safe water, air and land for human habitation and for other organisms and to remediate polluted sites. “Environmental engineering promotes the discharge of treated effluent from wastewater treatment facilities into receiving bodies of water, provide for air pollution control facilities, and proper waste management and disposal as well as design solutions for other environmental problems particularly those concerned with local and global environmental issues such as the effects of acid rain, ozone depletion, water pollution and air pollution from automobile exhausts and industrial sources,” Climaco said. She said environmental engineers are responsible for planning, designing, supervising, modifying or improving waste collection, treatment and disposal facilities, water supply, source evaluation, conveyance, treatment and distribution systems, solid waste, toxic, hazardous and radioactive wastes collection, treatment and disposal systems. “They are also responsible for supervising the operation of environmental engineering facilities or programs such as solid, toxic, hazardous and/or radioactive treatment facilities, wastewater treatment plants, air pollution control facilities and water works,” Climaco said. Under the measure to be known as the “Environmental Engineering Law of the Philippines,” the environmental engineering board shall be created and composed of three members who shall be appointed by the President of the Philippines, upon the recommendation of the Society of Environmental Engineers of the Philippines (SEEP).
The Board has the power to issue certificates of registration for the practice of environmental engineering and suspend or revoke the same. No person shall practice or offer to practice environmental engineering in the country without having obtained the proper certificate of registration from the Board. Foreign environmental engineers or experts called in by the Philippine Government for consultation for specific environmental engineering services shall be exempted from registration provided, they do not engage in private practice at their own account as environmental engineers. The bill imposes a jail term of not more than five years and a fine of not more than P50,000, or both at the discretion of the court on any person who shall commit to engage in the practice of environmental engineering without having been registered or who shall give any false or forged evidence of any kind, impersonating any registered environmental engineer. (30) lvc