MANILA, Philippines — Global climate change has already had observable effects on the environment. Glaciers have shrunk, ice on rivers and lakes is breaking up earlier, and the damage on the ozone layer continues to worsen, Senatorial candidate Loren Legarda once again stressed the importance of supporting the global movement for environmental protection.
“Environmental protection is everyone’s business. Hindi po pwedeng iilan lang ang kikilos. We only have one Earth and we should be responsible for making sure that the future generations still have a liveable planet. Even through our small acts, like turning our lights off when not in use, we make a big difference. Napakalaki po ng impact ng pagkilos ng bawat isa sa atin sa pagprotekta ng kalikasan.”loren legarda
Legarda cited the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment Report released recently that said “global warming has caused dangerous and widespread disruption in nature,” and “climate change is affecting the lives of billions of people, despite efforts to adapt.” Thus, the need to act now and work together in order to lessen the impacts of climate change must be taken seriously more than ever and it should be a top priority of the nation.
“While the Philippines has lesser historical greenhouse gas emissions, it is unfortunate that we are among the countries that are most vulnerable to climate change. The Global Climate Risk Index released by the Germanwatch organization, even ranked us 2nd in 2018 and 4th in the recent study of the most affected countries in the world by impacts of weather-related events, such as storms, floods, and heatwaves. We already experienced it, and we are experiencing it every year. We were hit by different typhoons over the years that killed many lives and left many of our communities devastated. If we continue hurting our planet by our harmful practices, then it will be the end of us,” Legarda warned.
Adding to the climate crisis is the coronavirus pandemic that the world is currently facing, Legarda mentioned that, “the opportunity to create and implement plans and programs toward pandemic recovery while protecting our environment is already right in front of us. Our pandemic recovery must be attuned with climate pathways or else it will not be successful. We take care of the environment and it will do the same for us.”
As an advocate of environmental protection and conservation, Legarda authored and sponsored the passage of some of the environmental landmark laws, such as the Clean Air Act of 1999 (RA 8749), Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000 (Republic Act No. 9003), Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act of 2001 (RA 9147), Clean Water Act of 2004 (RA 9275), National Environmental Awareness and Education Act of 2008 (RA 9512), Renewable Energy Act of 2008 (RA 9513), Climate Change Act of 2009 (RA 9729), as amended by the People’s Survival Fund Act of 2012 (RA 10174), and the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 (RA 10121).
“With (the previous) Earth Hour, we are reminded that the fight against environmental degradation and climate change must be part of our way of life. Every day, we can show how much we value and love our planet,” Legarda concluded.