Philippines must institutionalize climate change fight, says Ambassador Lazaro

PARIS, France, Nov. 29 (PNA) — President Aquino was able to put in place the principles and regulations addressing climate change in the country and the next leader should strengthen those guidelines, the country’s ambassador to France said.

“Well naumpisahan niya. I think yung principles nailagay niya sa lugar. Institutions are now… regulations and the principles for climate change and environment are already formed,” Ambassador Ma. Theresa Lazaro said in an interview with Radio TV Malacanang on Friday.

Lazaro said some of the regulations are undergoing processes in the legislature and they must be institutionalized by the incoming administration.

“Ito ang mahalaga sa mga ginawa ng Pangulong Aquino. Nailagay na sa lugar… and I mean maski ano pang debate ay kailangang kailangan natin itong ilagay sa tamang lugar in terms of legislation and then the executive branch should implement it,” she said.

The 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21), to be attended by the President on Nov. 30, is important for the Philippines since the country is at the top of the risk index in terms of the effects of climate change.

Lazaro said that because the Philippines is one of the vulnerable countries, it’s economic growth could easily be wiped out by calamities or disasters, putting the country in the continuous cycle of rebuilding.

“That’s why very important ang presence ni President Aquino, of course ang ating delegasyon, pero that also signifies kung gaano tayo kaimportante,” Lazaro said.

“This is a multilateral negotiation… sana ay malaman din ng ibang bayan that their countries will be really suffering kung hindi ihihinto ang mga the usual environmental degradation na ginagawa.”

She said that the Philippines made a commitment that by 2030, it would reduce the green house gas emissions by 70 percent with the help of the global community.

This emission cut is ambitious compared with other countries, with some committing only 30 or 40 percent reduction.

“I hope we can achieve this and kung anuman ang mangyari dito sa negotiations na ito, dito sa COP21, malakas ang impact nito sa buong mundo particularly sa atin. It will really help us,” according to Lazaro.

The Philippine embassy in France is glad that President Aquino is coming as it shows the country’s commitment to addressing the impacts of climate change, she said.

The 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will take place in Paris from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11, 2015.

The event will bring together world leaders to hammer out an agreement aimed at stabilizing the climate and avoiding the worst impacts of climate change. (PNA)