Legarda Stresses Legislators’ Role in Climate Change Action

February 19, 2014

Senator Loren Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, today stressed on the role of lawmakers in seeking solutions to the challenges brought about by the warming climate.

Legarda made the statement as the Senate and the House of Representatives, together with the British Embassy in Manila and the Global Legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment (GLOBE International) Philippines Chapter, welcome Sir David King, the UK Special Representative for Climate Change, in a forum, “The Politics of Climate Change and its 21st Century Challenges.”

“As lawmakers, we have the duty to craft policies towards sustainable development, environmental protection, climate change adaptation, and disaster risk reduction and management. The Philippine Congress has successfully passed two laws considered by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction as among the world’s best laws on disaster resilience—the Philippine Climate Change Act and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act,” said Legarda.

“However, our task as legislators does not end with the passage of laws. We must embark on a mission to elevate the role of lawmakers in the fight towards resilience primarily by enhancing Congress’ oversight functions and promoting regular executive-legislative consultation and dialogue,” she added.

Legarda recalled that in 2008, as part of her commitment to the 2008 Manila Call for Action, she filed a Senate Resolution recommending the creation of a standing committee on climate change.

“The call did not fall on deaf ears because in December 2008, the Senate Committee on Climate Change was created to ensure the implementation of laws as well as the sustainability of initiatives for DRR and CCA in the Philippines. But we still have a great task ahead of us,” she said.

“We must continue to promote a change of mindset, especially in members of government institutions, to be more concerned and committed to helping the national government address the threats of environmental degradation and the warming climate,” Legarda concluded.