Legarda Hails Paris Agreement Ratification by US and China

September 5, 2016

Senator Loren Legarda today hailed the United States’ and China’s ratification of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and said that this could pave the way for the deal’s entry into force before the year ends.


“This is a huge step towards the early entry into force of the Paris Agreement. It is encouraging to see that, following the lead of vulnerable small island nations, the two biggest emitters of greenhouse gases (GHG) have formalized their commitment to saving our planet from further warming,” said Legarda, UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction’s (UNISDR) Global Champion for Resilience.


With these developments, 26 of the 197 Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), representing 39% of global GHG emissions, have now ratified the Agreement. For the Agreement to enter into force, at least 55 Parties to the UNFCCC representing 55 percent of global GHG emissions must ratify it.


Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change and author of the Philippine Climate Change Act, said she is hopeful that the Philippines would also ratify the Agreement soon.


“I am hopeful that it will not take long for our own government to realize the wisdom of completing our process of ratification. The Paris Agreement is very important for the Philippines, being one of the most vulnerable nations to the impacts of climate change,” she stressed.


“There is no provision in the Paris Agreement that would prevent our industrialization. In fact, it addresses the issue of climate justice. There are clear provisions in the Climate Agreement saying that industrialized nations must come up with a funding needed to help the vulnerable nations,” Legarda explained.


Under the Paris Agreement, developed nations are asked to decarbonize economy-wide. They must raise $100 Billion every year to help vulnerable nations for mitigation and adaptation, and to transfer technology. On the other hand, the Agreement acknowledges that developing nations will take time to decarbonize and will be able to do so with external support.


The Philippines was among the most influential countries in the crafting of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which seeks to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius, and possibly not more than 1.5 degrees Celsius.


The Philippines also signed the Agreement in New York last April 22and will be considered to have joined the Agreement once the President ratifies it and the Senate concurs in the ratification.