Aya Ecaldre ||
President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration is taking steps to mitigate the effects of climate change in the Philippines. In a press statement last January 27, 2021, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that the government is taking all necessary steps to strengthen our capacities to mitigate and address the effects of climate change.
This statement was in response to Germanwatch, an environmental policy study showing which nations were most affected by extreme weather in the last two decades. The Global Climate Risk Index 2020 Report ranked the Philippines 4th out of 180 countries most affected by extreme weather. There were 317 extreme weather cases reported in the Philippines, and the high score in the climate risk index indicates the country’s vulnerability to natural disasters and their effects.
Roque stated that the country ranking fourth in the index did not come as a surprise since the country has already been known to be one of the countries most vulnerable to natural disasters such as typhoons, flooding, landslides, and droughts. He also added that this vulnerability prompted Duterte to sign the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, a global pact that aims to keep the temperature from rising above the pre-industrial level.
The administration formulated a Mitigation and Disaster Risk Reduction Roadmap for 2018 to 2022 to aid and prepare identified vulnerable provinces and major cities like Metro Manila, Cebu, Iloilo, and Davao from natural disasters and their possible effects.
Roque stressed that climate change is a global challenge that has worsened existing inequalities and vulnerabilities from within and between nations. He hopes that the public would work together with the government. “Through our collective action, we can build adaptive and resilient communities across the archipelago. This would be our gift to the future generations of Filipinos,” he stated.