Legarda Rallies Fellow Parliamentarians from Vulnerable Nations to Unite in Ratifying Paris Climate Agreement

April 16, 2016

Senator Loren Legarda has urged her fellow parliamentarians from countries that are most vulnerable to climate change impacts to immediately ratify the Paris Agreement.

In her capacity as the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction’s Global Champion for Resilience and Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, Legarda wrote parliamentarians of member countries of the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF), which collectively represents one billion people highly vulnerable to climate change impacts, encouraging them to sign and ratify the Paris Agreement as soon as possible for its early entry into force.

“The early legislative action by the entirety of the CVF membership would send a clear signal to the international community, encouraging highly industrialized economies, major emitting nations and all countries to follow suit,” said Legarda.

Legarda noted that CVF members Fiji, Palau, Marshall Islands and Maldives were the first countries to ratify the Paris Agreement.

In order to take effect, 55 countries representing 55% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions must ratify or accede to the Agreement.

In November 2015, the CVF adopted the Manila-Paris Declaration during a High-Level Meeting in conjunction with the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP21). It articulated common concerns and commitments of vulnerable countries and urged the strengthening of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels enshrined in the Paris Agreement.

“The Paris Agreement creates a unique opportunity to safeguard our nations’ future and that of the entire planet. Entry into force of the treaty is now a key preoccupation for CVF nations given the disproportionate threats of climate change whose impacts already set back the lives of our people and present even existential challenges,” said Legarda.

The Philippines is the current Chair of the CVF, an international partnership of countries highly vulnerable to climate change. The Forum serves as a cooperation platform for participating governments to act together to deal with climate change.

The Manila-Paris Declaration and the High Level Meeting at COP21 gave recognition to the current membership of the Forum’s 43 participating nations composed of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Barbados, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Comoros, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Fiji, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Kenya, Kiribati, Madagascar, Malawi, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, Niger, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Senegal, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Tunisia, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Vietnam and Yemen.