Salceda asks DU30 to maintain participation in global climate change negotiations

Legazpi City--- Albay lawmaker Joey Sarte Salceda asked President Rodrigo Duterte to continue to participate in the global climate change negotiations and conferences for the next generation of Filipinos and to solve the global problem on warming planet.

Salceda, a known climate change warrior advocate and prime mover of the Department of Disaster Resilience to fortify the country’s calamity defense program and help ensure the country’s development and inclusive growth said he is drafting a letter asking the President to continue to participate in the climate change negotiations.

Salceda chairman of the house committee on climate change said that he is drafting a letter appealing the President to sustain the country’s participation in climate conferences for the benefit of next generation of Filipinos who would confront greater risk in their lifetime. The lawmaker’s move came after President Rodrigo Duterte questioned the United Nations rationale of participating in international talks on climate change where there was no entity to enforce the laws governing climate change. Duterte slammed the UN climate conferences, claiming it to be “a waste of time and money” since they have accomplished nothing to improve the situation in the concluded Nikkei International Conference on the Future of Asia in Tokyo last Friday. Subsequently, DFA Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. also said that the Philippines will no longer be attending in climate change conferences requiring air travel but will agree and vote yeas to radical proposals. Salceda, the green lawmaker advocate and United Nations senior champion of climate change reiterated that the Philippines’ participation in climate change conference is badly needed since the nation enjoys moral and intellectual leadership in these climate negotiations to resolve the global problem. “I would appeal the position of the administration about sustaining the Philippines participation in climate conferences since we enjoy moral and intellectual leadership in these climate negotiations to resolve this global problem,” Salceda said.

“We owe it to the next generation of Filipinos who would confront bigger risks in their lifetime,” the Albay solon added.

In a previous study presented by Filipino scientist here said that the Philippines is one of the most vulnerable countries affected by climate change due to warming planet.

The Philippines, ranked third as the most vulnerable and climate hotspot for disaster with no resources and lack of capability to cope, will be facing extreme frequency of rainfall and weather disturbances beyond 2020 according to Rosalina G. de Guzman, officer-in-charge, climatology and agrometeorology division, CAD during the “Trainor’s Training on Climate Variability/Change for DOST-PAGASA Regional Services Division for Southern Luzon held at La Roca Veranda Suites in Legazpi City said few years back here.

Guzman said that climate trends and projection in the Philippines in the next 30 to 40 years would be influenced by past emissions principally due to the long and lifetime effect of green house gas emissions.

Bicol facing the Pacific Ocean is the most vulnerable region in the country as the increase of temperatures go higher than Metro Manila’s which means widespread rainfall, flooding and typhoons will be pernicious here ten years from now, Pagasa official said.

The climate in the country by 2020 and 2050 is based on the study on present or current climate changes in the Philippine climate in terms of temperature, rainfall and extreme events including tropical cyclone occurrence, she said.

“The next 30 to 40 years will be greatly influenced by the past greenhouse gas emissions already emitted in the atmosphere which might stays for a hundred years or more. All areas of the Philippines will get warmer, more so in the relatively warmer summer months. The annual mean temperatures (average of maximum and minimum temperatures) in all areas in the country are expected to rise by 0.9 degrees Celsius to 1.1 degrees Celsius in 2020 and by 1.8 degrees Celsius to 2.2 degrees Celsius in 2050,” De Guzman said. In Southeast Asia which includes Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam, among others, temperature increases have been observed although magnitude varies from one country to another.

During the last 60 years, the country’s climate exhibited increasing temperatures as the maximum and minimum temperatures were seen to have increased by 0.36 degrees Celsius and 1.0 degrees Celsius respectively.

Extreme rainfall events or heavy daily rainfall will continue to become more frequent, extreme rainfall is projected to increase in Luzon and Visayas only but number of dry days is expected to increase in all parts of the country in 2020 and 2050, the study said.

The climate in the next 30 to 40 years is greatly influenced by past greenhouse gas emissions. The long lifetimes of the greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere with the exception of methane (with a lifetime of only 13 years) will mean that it will take at least 30 to 40 years to the atmosphere to stabilize even if mitigation measures are put in place.

This scenario prompted Salceda to push for the passage of DRR bill in an effort to strengthen the country’s preparedness on disaster and climate change related impact in the country. Salceda cited the adverse impact of climate change in Philippines like the occurrences of supertyphoons Reming and Yolanda.

Reming took place in Bicol on November 30, 2006 that climate more than 1,000 lives and multibillions devastation in private and public infrastructures including agricultural crops.

While Yolanda also hit in November 2013 and took nearly 10,000 lives, destroyed billions of pesos of livelihoods and economic assets in one swoop, and other large-scale disasters exposed problems in planning, coordinating and implementing large-scale disaster risk reduction and management efforts, rooted primarily in the nature of our governance framework for disaster risk reduction and management. Salceda pioneered the climate change adaptation and former co-chair of the Green Climate Fund of United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change and was United Nation’s Senior Global Champion for CCA and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR).