Legarda: Nations Must Heed New Climate Warnings; Mobilize Finance to Support Vulnerable Communities Against Harsher, Irreversible Impacts

August 11, 2021

House Deputy Speaker and Antique Representative Loren Legarda said that the mobilization of climate finance for the Philippines and other developing nations has become even more urgent to support the adaptation of vulnerable populations to more frequent, severe, and irreversible climate impacts. Legarda, a three-term Senator who authored the country’s Climate Change Act, made the statement in light of the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which made strong projections that global warming may exceed 1.5°C during the next 20 years unless global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions would be significantly reduced.

The IPCC report, entitled “Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis,” stated that human activity is responsible for 1.07 degrees Celsius of global warming, with “the scale of recent changes across the climate system… unprecedented over many centuries to many thousands of years.” The report is the first of three Working Group reports for the Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) set to be completed in 2022.

“The latest report gives more evidence of what we have known for years in terms of the fate of humanity and planet—that the climate crisis is caused by us humans and that there can be no more delay of even a day to minimize its impacts. I call on every government, every leader, and every policymaker to heed these warnings and provide adequate funding and resources for climate adaptation and mitigation,” Legarda said.

“Buhay natin, at ng ating mga anak ang nakataya dito. Kailangang bumuhos ang pondo para sa pagpapatibay ng ating kabuhayan sa kabila ng tumitindi at dumadalas na mga bagyo, pagbaha, o tagtuyot, o maging sa pagtaas ng tubig sa ating karagatan. Kakulangan sa oras ang kalaban natin dito, at kawalan ng suportang pinansyal mula sa mga bansang may responsibilidad sa pag-init ng mundo,” Legarda added.

According to the IPCC, all regions are experiencing further increases in hot climate impact-drivers (CIDs), including heavy precipitation and associated flooding, intensification of tropical cyclones and storms, reductions in mean precipitation, and increases in aridity, floods, and heatwaves in cities.

Legarda also emphasized that the upcoming 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, United Kingdom should be an opportunity for world leaders to convene and address the issue of undertaking large-scale and rapid reduction in emissions by the developed countries.

Under the Paris Agreement, countries commit to bring forward national plans detailing how much emissions would be reduced in order to limit the average global temperature rise to 1.5°C from pre-industrial levels.

“There’s greater urgency now for concrete action and for ambitious partnership and collaboration among countries at the upcoming climate talks in COP26, where world leaders will reconvene to operationalize the Paris Agreement. This Report tells us to not lose focus on the targets to be achieved by 2030 or by mid century and keep the world on track towards the 1.5 climate goal. The current pandemic is a big challenge for the global economy but it also points to the direction of a green and resilient COVID-19 recovery, where every country must have access to finance to leapfrog to low-carbon technologies. As grim as our climate future holds, the solutions for a healthier and more resilient planet are available. We just need to make the necessary sacrifices and actions and invest on a better world,” Legarda said.

“Patuloy tayong mananawagan upang makamit ang climate justice para sa lahat ng idinulot na problema ng krisis sa klima sa ating bansa at sa mamamayang Pilipino. Kailangan din natin umaksyon, kailangan patuloy ang ating paghanap at paglaan ng pondo para sa mga programa sa ating mga komunidad na araw-araw ay nanganganib ang buhay at kabuhayan, nang sila ay maprotektahan,” Legarda concluded.###