People for Peat conducted a virtual journalism training entitled "Journalist Training (part 1) Sustainable Use Peatland and Haze Mitigation in ASEAN” on June 8, 2021, via Zoom virtual conference. The said training was participated by journalists and media practitioners from the ASEAN region.
It aims to raise awareness of sustainable peatland management through multiple channels, including journalism efforts. The second part of journalism virtual training will be on June 14, 2021.
The said training provides an intensive course for editors and journalists about peatlands and how Southeast Asian peatlands can be managed sustainably, covering Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Myanmar, Lao PDR, Cambodia, and Vietnam.
In part 1 of the virtual training, four resource speakers shared their field of expertise. Clorinda Kurnia Wibowo, Energy & Peatland Senior Analyst of World Resources Institute (WRI) Indonesia, talked about ‘How to Read Scientific Data and Present it to the Audience.’ Peter Hanington, the Chief Technical Advisor of Sustainable Management of Peatland Ecosystems in Mekong Countries, shared about ‘Experiences on Peatland Management/Restoration Activities in Mekong Delta.’
Venkata Ganesh, the Innovative Finance & Business Development Lead of Tropical Rainforest Conservation and Research Centre (TRCRC), discussed the ‘Peatland Business Hub for Southeast Asia.’ Clare Rewcastle Brown, the investigative journalist and founder of Sarawak Report and Radio Free Sarawak, talked about ‘Reporting on the Environment: The Challenge for Journalists in Southeast Asia.’
As an advocacy blogger and writer, it is important to have this kind of training in order for me to help raise awareness for its ecological importance and its recent peatland degradation due to unsustainable human activities.
The Philippines is one of the countries in Southeast Asia (SEA) where peatland ecosystems can be found. According to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Biodiversity Management Bureau (DENR-BMB), Region 12 is one of the regions that is believed to be a host to peatland areas in the country.
Peatlands render a number of important ecosystem services. First, peatland stores more carbon than any other vegetation types combined, they help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and consequently help reduce global warming. Furthermore, similar to sponges, peatlands absorb huge amounts of surrounding water while filtering pollutants. Peatlands are crucial for flood mitigation during storms and wet seasons while supporting low water flow during the drier seasons.
The said training is organized by People for Peat, funded by the European Union, and with coalition members - World Resources Institute, The Sustainable Trade Initiative and Tropical Rainforest Conservation & Research Centre.
People for Peat (PFP) is a coalition that represents the second component of the Sustainable Use of Peatland and Haze Mitigation in ASEAN (SUPA) program. Aimed to support and enhance ASEAN Peatland Management Strategy, collective actions and enhanced cooperation of non-state actors (NSAs) will improve sustainable peatland management, mitigate the impacts of climate change, manage the risk of peat fires, and reduce transboundary regional haze. PFP focuses to improve the participation of NSAs through integrated data and information, improved capacity building in business and investment, and enhanced awareness through outreach and advocacy.