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U.S. DTRA leads chemical security workshop series with PH partners

Philippine agencies participate in series of virtual chemical security regulatory workshops facilitated by DTRA and PNNL.

FROM October 20 to November 19, the U.S. government, through the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), facilitated a series of virtual Chemical Security Regulatory Development workshops for representatives of more than seven Philippine government agencies that comprise the Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) National Team. The purpose of this workshop series, which garnered nearly 30 participants, was to develop fundamental international legislative and regulatory guidelines on chemical security in the Philippines.

Chief of the Bureau of Fire Protection and Vice-Chair of the CBRN National Team General Joseph Embang and Assistant Secretary for Public Safety and Security and Chair of the Philippines CBRN National Team Alexander Macario joined other high-ranking officials and several stakeholders from DTRA, PNNL, as well as other Philippine agencies, for these workshops. During the seminars, participants reviewed recent developments on CBRN security to assist in fundamental chemical security training in the Philippines.

General Embang said, “The CBRN National Team takes its steps, together with DTRA, in realizing our goals for a chemical security regime. This is a work in progress, but with this recently concluded workshop and recommendations received by Philippine government officials, a renewed commitment has been made to pursue and complete a national chemical security framework.

DTRA, PNNL, and Philippine partners were successful in creating a unified and comprehensive national framework for chemical security, this key goal underscored by the tragic port explosion in Beirut, Lebanon in August. Following the completion of these workshops, the Philippines CBRN National Team will work with stakeholders to ensure legislation continues to move through deliberative interagency processes.

Dr. Robert Pope, director of DTRA’s Cooperative Threat Reduction Program, said, “We are proud to be a partner in the multi-year joint effort to align international chemical security leading practices with the Philippine regulatory framework. We value our longstanding partnership with the Bureau of Fire Protection and Filipino interagency partners, and look forward to continuing our efforts to facilitate development of a regulatory regime for chemical security in the Philippines.