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Editorial: Our planet’s survival

Since we live in a global community, the need for concerted action to push things forward is the order of the day. The state of our environment and the changing climate are life and death reasons for countries to work together for the planet’s survival.

Although the Paris Agreement on Climate Change was initially met with strong reservations by Pres. Rodrigo Duterte early in his administration, he finally signed the document which was carried by the Philippine Mission to the United Nations on March 23, 2017. It will enter into force for the Philippines on Saturday, April 22 which is also Earth Day.

But what’s in it for us? According to Sen. Loren Legarda, chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, the country will no longer be an observer in the next meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement but will sit as member that can put forward our own concerns in the deliberations.

With this status, the country can get support from developed countries for adaptation, mitigation, technology development and transfer, and capacity building. We could also seek help in the development and roll out of early warning systems, comprehensive risk assessment and management tools, and other capacity-building projects and programs that would enable our communities to be more prepared for climate change and natural disasters.

Legarda said that the Paris Agreement shows that developing nations and developed countries could pursue climate action and uphold climate justice together.

For the communities badly hit by calamities such as quakes, typhoons and flooding, the local government has to be provided with more skills and technology to assess and monitor the integrity of their infrastructure and to put in place local policies that would ensure all new structures should be up to code. Education and information should be sustained all year round.

The survival of our planet is everyone’s concern.


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