DENR chief lauds PHL’s accession to Paris Agreement

MANILA-- The Philippines will enjoy multiple benefits from President Rodrigo Duterte's decision for the country to accede to the Paris Agreement on reducing global climate change-driving greenhouse gas emissions.

Environment chief Gina Lopez expressed such optimism, noting such decision is timely as the Philippines is among countries most vulnerable to climate change's impacts.

"The Paris Agreement will definitely bring a silver lining of hope to our sons and daughters - Filipinos of next generations - that they may continue to enjoy the country filled with bountiful natural resources and beautiful environment while having enough knowledge and wisdom to utilize these and be fully prepared for the new normal that is climate change," she said in a statement released Wednesday (March 1) after Malacanang announced earlier this same day that Mr. Duterte, as Climate Change Commission (CCC) Chairperson, already signed the Instrument of Accession to the Agreement.

Such instrument is already in the Senate awaiting concurrence, noted CCC.

Ratifying the Paris Agreement would enable the country to maximize its climate adaptation and mitigation efforts so people nationwide can have better protection from climate change's impacts, Lopez said.

"There's also no doubt we'll be able to fully transform our communities towards climate resiliency and embrace the principle of sustainable integrated area development as the way forward to achieving a green economy," she said further.

According to experts, increasing onslaught of weather extremes as well as sea level and temperature rise are climate change's impacts on the country.

The Philippines is responding to the climate change challenge by implementing various adaptation and mitigation initiatives, including the Enhanced National Greening Program on reforestation as well as coastal and marine ecosystems management, solid waste management and pollution control management, noted Lopez.

"We're one with the world in tackling the threat of climate change," she said.

CCC noted the Philippines' accession followed concurrence of 33 government agencies that are members of this commission's Advisory Board.

Lopez said the environment department welcomed, "with much joy and hope," President Duterte's decision supporting the Paris Agreement.

"The Philippines cannot abandon its commitment to address the single greatest threat facing our planet," she added, referring to climate change. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency