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Loren Asks LGUs: Implement Climate Laws for Our Own Sake and That of Future Generations

March 15, 2017

Senator Loren Legarda today renewed her call to local government units to implement the country’s laws on climate and environment, stressing that local action is crucial in ensuring the survival of present and future generations

Legarda made the statement as the Philippines ratified the Paris Agreement on Climate Change following the Senate’s unanimous approval on Tuesday.

“Our accession to the Paris Agreement is one vital step towards our climate resilience efforts and equally crucial is the level of action that local governments will undertake. Local leaders must be at the forefront of climate action to ensure that solutions will address the specific climate vulnerabilities of communities,” she explained.

Legarda noted that the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP), the umbrella organization of all leagues of local government units (LGUs) and locally elected officials in the country, supported the ratification of the Paris Agreement through a Resolution they released last year.

They have also committed to ensure the institutionalization of the country’s commitments under its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and to continue the urgent appeal for world leaders to implement the agreements on reducing emissions, formulating and implementing mechanisms on climate finance in the context of loss and damage and adaptation, mitigation, technology transfer and capacity building for countries vulnerable to climate change.

“One crucial step for our LGUs is the crafting of their respective local climate change action plans (LCCAP). I urge them to adopt the 1.5 degrees Celsius limit goal as they craft their LCCAP. Let us not just do these local climate action plans for compliance, let us do this because the survival of our people and the sustainability of our communities matter,” said Legarda.

“It is also important that LGUs implement all environmental laws, including the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Ecological Solid Waste Management Act, Renewable Energy Act, Climate Change Act, and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act, to build the resilience of their communities,” she added.

Legarda, principal author of the Climate Change Law and Chair of the Senate Committees on Finance and Climate Change, secured LGUs’ concurrence in the Paris Agreement, thus the issuance of ULAP Resolution No. 2016-01.

From the day the Paris Agreement was signed by more than a hundred countries on April 22, 2016 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York where Legarda was present, the Senator has called on the Philippines and all nations to immediately ratify the Agreement.

Legarda has been working behind the scenes in pushing for the Philippines’ ratification, personally explaining the Agreement to Cabinet members, including the President’s economic team, and at the same time coordinating with various climate organizations on the way forward.