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Climate change payments seen

/ 08:57 PM December 10, 2013

BAGUIO CITY—Delegates returning from last month’s United Nations climate change talks in Poland said a new deal has allowed the grant of compensation to survivors of disasters attributed to global warming.

Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, executive director of Tebtebba, a Baguio-based nongovernment group pushing for indigenous rights and climate justice, said the Warsaw international mechanism for loss and damage associated with climate change improves coordination work and provides technical support for developing countries.

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Most importantly, it will also mobilize and secure funds and technology to address loss and damage, she said.

Dr. Saleemul Huq, of the London-based International Institute for Environment and Development, said “loss and damage” is a UN jargon for “liability and compensation.”

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The next step for the UN is to establish how this new mechanism could be enforced.

Corpuz said Supertyphoon “Yolanda” (international name: “Haiyan”), which hit Eastern Visayas on Nov. 8,  provided the talks with a grim backdrop of what was truly at stake.

Since the typhoon struck, online support groups have been trying to draw attention to indigenous Filipinos caught in the typhoon, she said.

The Integrated Development Program for Indigenous Peoples in Southern Tagalog (IDPIP-ST) provided an initial inventory last month of affected indigenous Filipinos, among them the Tagbanua Calamianen tribe in Busuanga and Coron towns in Palawan province.

One account, posted on the e-mail group of environmental advocates, said 80 percent of Tara Island in Palawan had been devastated by the typhoon. Maurice Malanes with a report from Vincent Cabreza, Inquirer Northern Luzon

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