October 30, 2023
MANILA – The Philippines made a call ahead of the 2023 United Nations climate change conference in Dubai this December where President Ferdinand Marcos Hr. is expected to attend that it is a “moral obligation” of rich countries to honor climate deals like the Paris Agreement.
Robert Borje, executive director of the Climate Change Commission (CCC), told reporters on Friday the topics they would raise during the climate summit in Dubai would center “on what developing countries, like the Philippines, continue to experience” due to the worsening effects of climate change.
“We are working very hard at the preparations and we hope to get there with all our bags filled with everything that we need so that we will make the strongest case possible for our nation all those we’ve lost over the last few decades because of climate change and its impacts,” Borje said.
He added the Philippines would also present during the summit “what we are doing to make sure that we are responsible members of the international community and what the international community needs to continue doing.”
“Climate change is the global governance challenge of our generation and it takes the entire world to address the problems and root causes,” he said.
In June this year, Marcos said he wanted to attend the summit because “climate change is a primordial issue” for the Philippines.
He added his presence at the conference would also be an opportunity for him to renew the ties between the Philippines and the United Arab Emirates.
Borje said the President’s attendance at the conference would be important because Marcos placed climate change as a priority of his administration during his inaugural address on June 30 last year.
“There is nothing that prevents us from working with development partners to increase investments in key sectors of our nation to transition toward a low carbon economy and to strengthen local governments when it comes to adaptation to the effects of climate change,” he said.
He added climate change deals were more than just about financing.
“For those of us who are experiencing loss and damage that is over and above what other countries are suffering, it becomes a moral obligation,” Borje said.
“Our United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, our Paris Agreement are moral obligations of other countries because it affects the life, livelihood, and future of the Philippines,” he added.
Data from the CCC showed that the Philippines suffered a $12-billion loss and damage due to the impact of climate change in the past decade.
The CCC said the Philippines, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand emerged as four of 10 most vulnerable countries to climate change and disasters in the Southeast Asian region.