Legarda: Sustainable Development, Resilience Help Address Unemployment

February 12, 2014

Amid statistics showing an increase in the country’s unemployment rate, Senator Loren Legarda today said that gearing towards sustainable development and resilience will help address the lingering problem of joblessness.


The Senator noted that a recent SWS survey showed that unemployment rose to 27.5%, or 12.1 million Filipinos jobless, in the last quarter of 2013.


Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committees on Environment and Natural Resources, and Climate Change, said that the disasters that struck the country in the last quarter of 2013, particularly the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in Bohol and typhoon Yolanda, were among the likely factors that led to the hike in unemployment rate.


“In order to address the increasing rate of unemployment, sustainable development and disaster resilience must be embedded in the government’s efforts. We need to be disaster resilient not only to protect lives and homes, but also to safeguard our schools, hospitals, malls, buildings, farms, plantations and factories, which all provide employment for Filipinos,” she said.


“Gearing towards sustainable development will also help improve our employment statistics. For instance, renewable energy projects can generate jobs that are badly needed. A study by the Greenpeace shows that 650,000 jobs have been generated by renewable energy in Europe alone,” she stressed.


The Senator also pushed for the promotion of green jobs and green skills in the country, noting that other nations encourage their citizens to engage in management in agriculture, forestry, horticulture, environmental information technology, and other careers that contribute to environmental preservation.


“All these efforts would complement our existing job generation strategies such as strengthened employment creation and facilitation by local governments, bringing in direct foreign investments to spur local labor demand, and promotion of self-employment, particularly on micro enterprise activities,” said Legarda.


“As a fundamental development strategy, building resilience would help our government sustain the country’s socio-economic gains, make a difference in poverty reduction, and eventually ensure the achievement of sustainable development goals,” she concluded.