Legarda to push for ratification of Paris climate pact

April 24, 2016

MANILA, Philippines – Now that 175 countries, including the Philippines, have signed the legally binding Paris climate agreement, Sen. Loren Legarda said that the challenge now is to ensure its early entry into force.

The Paris agreement will come into force once 55 countries responsible for 55 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases have ratified it, including the world’s top polluters China and the United States. Altogether, the 175 signatories at the United Nations signing ceremony account for 93 percent of global greenhouse gases, according to the World Resource Institute.

Legarda said that she will work on getting the agreement ratified by the Senate within the year while also calling on legislators from other countries to do the same.

“We will muster all the energy and resources within our means, sustain advocacy at the grassroots level and rally the executive and legislative branches of the government, as well as the local government units, so that the Philippines can be true to its commitment in Paris to keep global temperature rise this century well below two degrees Celsius and to drive efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels,” Legarda said.

In her capacity as the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) Global Champion for Resilience, Legarda has written to parliamentarians of the 43 countries making up the Climate Vulnerable Forum, urging them to ratify the agreement.

“I also call on my fellow legislators in the Women in Parliaments Global Forum, my fellow policy-makers in GLOBE International and everyone who values life and our future, let us continue to rally our networks, organizations and civil society in ensuring that our governments keep the promises they gave in Paris,” she said.

Sen. Grace Poe supports the ratification of the Paris agreement and the fulfillment of its commitments.

“I call on the Senate to immediately ratify the Paris Agreement. I will certainly lead and participate in this effort. After ratification, the next task for us is to honor our commitment as captured in our Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC),” Poe said.

If elected president in the May 9 elections, Poe said that she is committed to the country’s pledge under the agreement and will work to reduce emission by 70 percent relative to business-as-usual levels by 2030.

“This means that we will have to make a rapid transition to renewable energy and protect our forests and ecosystems. We will also accelerate adaptation efforts so that our people and communities become more resilient,” Poe said.

Public should pitch in

The Philippine Climate Change Commission (CCC) urged the public to help the government in its efforts to deal with climate change and its impact.

With the continued rise of global temperatures, CCC Secretary Emmanuel de Guzman stressed that the adverse effects of climate change do not discriminate and will not spare anyone.

Source: Inquirer