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Legarda hopes World Leaders would heed Pope’s Call for Environmental Protection

March 21, 2013

Reelectionist Senator Loren Legarda today expressed optimism that world leaders would heed Pope Francis’ call for governments to protect the Earth.

Legarda, a staunch environmentalist and climate change adaptation advocate, said that she hopes government leaders around the world would listen to and act in accordance with the Pope’s appeal.

“I am glad that Pope Francis made this very important call upon world leaders and citizens to be the ‘protectors of the environment’. I find hope that we will have a good campaign for environmental protection now that no less than the Pope strongly advocates for it,” she said.

“Pope Francis really understands the needs of the poor because the poorest citizens of the world are the most vulnerable to the effects of environmental degradation. It is not enough that we show we are pro-poor if we disregard our environment. The Earth that we live in provides us with our needs, and even if we have all the money in the world, we will not survive in a deteriorating environment,” Legarda stressed.

The Senator said she hopes that world leaders would be encouraged to cut down on pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, reduce fossil fuel consumption, promote use of renewable energy, and assist developing nations that are most vulnerable to the effects of environmental degradation.

“Protecting and preserving our environment is a moral responsibility of all. The impact of nature’s forces on vulnerable communities must be reduced to prevent disasters and alleviate poverty. Non-action on disaster risk is actually a ‘social sin’, an injustice to the poor,” Legarda said.

“Poverty breeds disaster vulnerability. Those who have least in life risk life most. Thus, as disaster become more prevalent, the higher is the duty of the government to reduce disaster risk in pursuit of resilient development. Disaster risk reduction is social justice in action,” she added.

In his inaugural mass, Pope Francis asked “all those who have positions of responsibility in economic, political and social life, and all men and women of goodwill: let us be protectors of creation, protectors of God’s plan inscribed in nature, protectors of one another and of the environment.”***