PGMA feted for Coral Triangle efforts

April 14, 2010 10:34 pm 

WASHINGTON DC, April 14 — President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo today (April 14 in Manila) received the ICCF Teddy Roosevelt International Conservation Award from a prestigious US group in recognition of her forefront efforts and advocacies in support of the Coral Triangle Initiative.

The Award was conferred during a brief but well-attended ceremony organized at Capitol Hill’s Cannon House Building by the International Conservation Caucus Foundation (ICCF), a group of conservationists which has become a major donor organization for environmental activities worldwide.

The Coral Triangle is a marine region largely in the Pacific covering 76 percent of world marine species in the territories of the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Timor Leste.

In the vast coral region, President Arroyo has advocated and spearheaded a multi-nation effort to preserve and protect marine resources so as to ensure stable marine food resources while doing sustainable environmental protection.

With the Capitol Hill conferment of the Teddy Roosevelt award, President Arroyo joined three other world personalities who had received the ICCF honors namely: Rob Portman, director of the US Office of Management and Budget (1960); former British Prime Minister Tony Blair of Great Britain (2007); and Prince Albert II of Monaco (2009).

A grouping of non-government groups worldwide with congressional members and donors in Washington DC and various world capitals, the ICCF said it has recognized the innovative leadership of President Arroyo in her effort to protect the oceans and preserve biodiversity of the Coral Triangle.

Those who presented the award were Monique Barbut, a French and Chief Executive Officer of the Global Environmental Facility, an ICCF affiliate; Senator Ed Royce; and Carter Roberts, chief executive officer of the World Wide Fund (WWF).

The affair coincided with the declaration by the ICCF of 2010 as Year of Biodiversity.

In her acceptance message, President Arroyo said that as the leader of 85 million Filipinos spread over 7,100 islands, her first responsibility is to provide the people especially the poor with food and resources which she said can be done by harmonizing economic growth and the needs of healthy environment.

She said that in her Coral Triangle initiatives, she found a moral obligation to help preserve the beauty and bounty of nature for the next generation.

President Arroyo said the award, named after conservationist US President Theodore Roosevelt, inspired her to call on her compatriots all over the world to join conservationist activities. (PNA)



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