Environmentalist group says PH needs to improve climate change policy
MANILA, Philippines—“Needs improvement” was the overall rating given by an environmentalist group to the Philippines’ climate change policy as it challenged the Aquino government to translate its “progressive voice” in the just-concluded climate talks in Warsaw into action.
The climate group Aksyon Klima Pilipinas said it gave passing marks to the work of the Philippine delegates to the United Nations climate negotiations, in which they tried to convince developed nations to take responsibility for the impact of climate change on poor countries.
But the group’s report card gave the administration a failing grade for not integrating climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction in the national and local development plans.
Aksyon Klima presented its report card to Naderev Saño of the Climate Change Commission, the lead negotiator in the Warsaw talks, as the National Climate Change Consciousness Week drew to a close Friday.
“The President himself has rightfully connected the dots between climate change and extreme weather events such as Yolanda, and called on developed countries who have contributed the most to global warming to have a sense of moral responsibility,” the group’s national coordinator Voltaire Alferez said
In the report card, the network also gave a passing mark for the passage into law last year of the People’s Survival Fund (PSF), which will allocate at least P1 billion for the adaptation efforts of local governments and communities.
But it noted that the law was still not operational, as the implementing rules and regulations have yet to be signed by the President, programmed funds have yet to be allocated, and the PSF Board yet to be convened.
“Your remaining years in office will now define how you will turn over our country to the next administration, whether or not it will be ready for great upheavals of weather made more intense by the warming of the seas,” the network said in an open letter to President Aquino.
Aksyon Klima said it would continue ensuring “that the Philippines will translate its well-applauded calls in Warsaw to consistent, coherent and concrete actions on adaptation, mitigation, finance and technology back home.”
“Even if we make our domestic actions simply for our own benefit, the delegation benefits from maintaining the moral high ground in the next round of negotiations,” Alferez said.
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