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Filipinos, how are you adapting to climate change? You ask, we answer

Lucille L. Sering's picture

Climate change is definitely upon us.  You don’t need to have a scientific mind to realize this, as recent natural calamities have shown in the Philippines, which also swept through some parts of Southeast Asia causing hundreds of casualties and losses to the economy: Typhoons Ondoy (International name: Ketsana) and Pepeng (Parma) in 2009 that flooded Metro Manila; Sendong (Washi) in 2011 which was recognized as the world’s deadliest storm in 2011; and Pablo (Bopha) in 2012.  Certainly, this is a little discomforting and makes us a little bit apprehensive about our future. To lessen our anxiety about this phenomenon, it helps to ask questions and get answers. It’s also good to know if something is being done to address the problem – and know that it is being done right.

The Aquino government has been very aggressive in its approach to address the problem of climate change.  It staffed the Climate Change Commission  (CCC) and made it functional. The CCC coordinates and provides oversight and policy advice on programs and projects on climate change. It is also tasked to craft the National Strategic Framework on Climate Change and the National Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP). The latter serves as the country’s roadmap to effectively deal with the problem. The CCC also takes a strong stand in international negotiations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

To give more teeth to the government’s efforts to adapt to climate change, another law was passed creating the People’s Survival Fund (PSF). With an initial fund of P1 billion pesos (equivalent to US25 million), the special fund will be used for climate change adaptation programs and projects at the local level.

To ensure that the government stays on the right path, through the Climate Change Commission and the Department of Budget and Management, it has requested the World Bank to undertake a study to review government expenditures related to climate change and institutions with mandates to address climate change.

The study called the Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review or CPEIR, also provides a general backdrop of projected increases in global temperature and its corresponding effects:

  • Globally, since 1950, ocean temperature increased by about 0.09oC
  • Sea levels have been rising by 15-20 cm from pre-industrial levels with the rate nearly doubling from that of the past century.
  • Industrial activity was non-existent in the Philippines during this period and any GHG emission could only come from agricultural and other normal processes. However, as a small and archipelagic country, the Philippines is highly vulnerable to sea-level rise. The report cited a study (Dasgupta et al. 2009) which listed the cities of San Jose, Manila, Roxas and Cotabato among the top 10 most vulnerable cities in the East Asia and Pacific Region to sea-level rise.

Based on the study, climate change clearly poses a threat to human survival. It foretells of the submergence of coastal communities due to sea-level rise. It also projects the occurrence of frequent and stronger typhoons, and of prolonged, intense heat in the summers and heavy rains and flooding during rainy season. It also tells of the dire consequences of these natural catastrophes to human habitation, food supply, the degradation of ecosystem services and eventual extinction of some species. This clearly shows that climate change is a development issue that threatens the gains and economic development attained in past decades. Agriculture, for instance, which relies on a stable, regular weather pattern will be adversely affected, if such pattern is disrupted by climate change.

While the Philippines is not a major green house gas (GHG) emitter, the report projects that our country’s GHG emission will continue to increase in the years to come. This growth will be due to a growing economy, heightened urbanization, increased demand and use of energy and the expected increase in the number of vehicles, all of which are highly dependent on crude oil for energy.

Given the above, the report recommends several measures along three main lines:

  • strengthening planning, execution, and financing framework for climate change
  • enhancing leadership and accountability through monitoring, evaluation, and review of climate change policies and activities
  • building capacity and managing change

The report, to be launched on June 25, 2013 in Manila, also calls on the government to address several barriers to effective implementation of the climate change agenda.

Meanwhile, a survey commissioned by the World Bank and conducted by the Social Weather Station finds that many Filipinos say they are now experiencing the effects of a changing climate. The survey looked into the level of knowledge of Filipinos about the impacts of climate change as well as their personal experience/s about it. We’ll soon share the results of this survey on www.worldbank.org/ph, but in the meantime, perhaps there are those who are still in the dark about how to adapt to a changing climate, or how the government is working to mitigate its effects.

If you have questions about this topic or would like to share some observations about your environment, please post them in the comments section of this blog. Join the conversation on Twitter by sending your feedback to @worldbankasia and to @CCCommissionPh with hashtag #askCCC and we'll make sure to respond to them. We hope to address all your concerns and will be selecting five of the most pressing questions and answer them in a short video called   5 Questions, 5 Minutes to be posted on www.worldbank.org/ph. Ask now!

Image courtesy of audiovisualjunkie through a Creative Commons license

Comments

Submitted by Danilo Toquero Tierra on

Climate Change : Point of Concern

Since climate change is alreay with us, and creating damage to lives and propeties to the people. I understand that the Climate Change Commision (CCC ), have a one billion peso fund which is to be utilized to address concerns related to climate change.

My point of concern is, how the CCC, will in any way help those people directly affected by the onslaught of the extreme weather conditions. To whom should they seek compensation to damages to their lives and properties? And how to quantify the compensation if there’s any? Do the victims of nature’s wrath be classified as collateral damage?

Submitted by James Harvey Maceda on

Nowadays, we are experiencing climate change and it seems that it is getting worse. First of all, who is really the one who causes this problem? It is us, all of us. There is no one else to be blame and not even the government. It is because of the people in this world that’s why this problem arises. We are the ones who cause this problem and now we are experiencing its effect. As written in the article, it is said that our government is making project in concern to this problem. Now it is our turn to do something. We can’t rely everything on our government. Given that many people are complaining to the administration, why not make a move on themselves. I mean we as individuals of this world should also move for the betterment not only for their country but also for the whole world because this climate change affects everybody. We should start a change on ourselves. Self discipline in every individual will be a great help in the world.
The world is experiencing different calamities such as: floods, typhoon, earthquakes and the like. Maybe these disasters are only one of the ways of our mother earth to give back what we deserve for polluting and destroying its beauty. Of course we don’t want for the world to end but base on our actions, we are really the one who speeds or make the world faster to end. Slowly by slowly we are devouring our own living place. Just compare the Earth before and now. Before, our Earth is full of life but now we can see pollutions everywhere. Many people are aware of what’s happening on the world but not even taking an action. It seems many people don’t care on what is happening on its surroundings. Through this opportunity, let me encourage you to take an action for our world. Change will start on us!

Submitted by Glenn Richard Oracion on

I think that one day..

It is truly heart-breaking that our world suddenly suffered because of Climate Change. I could say that it is our fault as to why we are experiencing this big problem. It should start with DISCIPLINE and RESPECT to MOTHER NATURE.

After reading World Bank's Report about their findings and suggestions on how the Philippines will survive from the drastic climate change, there are really a lot of things to learn to implement the action plans they have. I strongly believe that the awareness should start from ourselves so whatever conclusion they come up with after carefully studying our situation will easily get our participation.

The Economic Status of our people also contributed to this challenge most especially those who live in over-populated areas. Garbage are seen all over the place even floating on rivers and seas. The worst part is they even burn plastics which totally affects our health and ozone layer. We were taught how to segregate wastes by identifying which is biodegradable and non-biodegradable.

For those who live near the mountains and rain forests, they didn't even think twice cutting down trees to come up with materials made out of wood. Which is why whenever it rains or worst, a typhoon pays us a visit, most areas in our country are flooded. Our drainage system cannot also control the water level because of our trashes.

The typhoons that visited our country for the past few years greatly impacted our lives. Not only our economic status but us physically. A lot of people lost their properties and the sad part is, lost their loved ones.

The Philippine Government is required to allot a budget amounting to ONE BILLION PESOS to help us survive climate change. The key to survival is relies on our Private Sectors whose expertise is to make our country environment friendly.

My only question is, with all the action plans discussed, how can we ensure that we get the cooperation of the Filipinos to make it work?

What will be the repercussion if nothing happens after consuming One Billion Pesos to save our country from natural disasters?

Submitted by Vincent Paul Villacrusis on

While urbanization creates some of the greatest impacts in climate change, urbanization can not be avoided due to the growing population and increasing demands in the economy.

A few years ago, I did a library research paper on climate change and air pollution in the Philippines and found out that one of the greatest contributors of greenhouse gas is the burning of fossil fuels (petroleum, coal, etc.).

Here are some of the answers of the government to increasing GHG emissions and their flaws:

1. Promoting the use of public transportation to reduce vehicles on the road
- While it would indeed succeed in reducing the number of vehicles on the road, poorly maintained vehicles (PUJs, buses, etc) burn more fuel and produce more emissions, therefore only reducing air pollution by a small portion.

2. The promotion and use of electric vehicles (E-jeepneys)
- Most people agree that electric vehicles are indeed a solution to the increasing air pollution since they emit no byproducts. Electric cars indeed do not have emissions, however, it still contributes to GHG emissions indirectly through electricity since major electric companies in the Philippines produce electricity through fossil fuels.

3. Importation of hybrid vehicles
- Although the importation of the said vehicles was made by car companies to help reduce air pollution, these cars did not catch on simply because the cars were more expensive due to additional taxes (caused by importation of the car) and the government did not give any incentive for future car owners to purchase hybrid vehicles.
***As of now, there is currently a bill pending for approval to boost demand on hybrid vehicles

In my opinion, although investing in renewable energy sources may need a higher capital compared to non-renewable energy sources, renewable energy would be able to provide better in the long run.

Submitted by Pamela Anne Robles on

It is a truth universally acknowledged that climate change is a big deal. Bad floods, heat waves, prolonged typhoon seasons, and rising of the sea level are just some of the effects. While it doesn't seem like much now, what we're doing (or not doing seems more appropriate) to slow down the inevitable is going to affect us horribly in the long run.
Yes, fine, great, we're using the appropriations given to us for rehabilitation after floods and typhoons, but these disasters probably wouldn't have affected us as badly as they did if enough time, energy, and knowledge was devoted to slowing down climate change in the first place.
As the WB Report has said, "Climate Action can contribute to inclusive growth and poverty reduction". Taking the necessary steps to improve our climate condition could give more job opportunities, improve public health, and reduce energy costs. We are so intent on boosting our economy in more "conventional" ways that we overlook the fact that nature can give as much as she can take away.
We need to educate the people not only on the consequences of harming the environment, but also on the benefits of trying to save it.

Submitted by Vincent Paul Villacrusis on

While urbanization is indeed a great contributor to climate change, it is unavoidable due to the increasing population and demands of the country and its people.

A few semesters ago, I did a library research paper on climate change and air pollution in the Philippines. With the data gathered from various sources for the said topic, I was able to find that the greatest cause of greenhouse gas emissions in the country come from the burning of fossil fuels such as petroleum and coal. Although the government has proposed several solutions to resolve the problem, most of these solutions had flaws in them.

Here are some of the solutions proposed by the government and their flaws:

1. Promotion of the use of public transportation vehicles to reduce the number of cars on the road

- While indeed it would be successful in reducing the number of vehicles on the road, the government has failed to analyse which vehicles were contributing more to the pollution. Poorly maintained vehicles (mostly PUJs and buses) burn more fuel and produce more emissions as compared to a well-maintained vehicle of the same type.

2. The use of electric vehicles such as E-jeepney

- Most people fail to see that electric vehicles also contribute to air pollution. Although the said vehicles may not have emissions/by-products, they contribute to greenhouse gas emissions indirectly when they charge. This is because major producers of electricity in the country produce electricity through the burning of fossil fuels.

3. Importation of hybrid vehicles

- Although the importation of the said vehicles was made by car companies here in the Philippines to help reduce air pollution, these hybrids did not sell well in the country simply because they cost much more because of the additional taxes from importation. The government failed to give incentives for future car owners to consider purchasing the car.
*** As of now, there has now been a proposed bill for the promotion of these hybrids waiting for approval.

Although renewable energy sources may need a higher capital as compared to non-renewable energy sources, renewable energy would be able to provide a much more affordable electricity and cleaner environment as compared to non-renewable energy.

Submitted by Neressa P. Biton on

I live in the Philippines specifically in the province of Iloilo. We were a victim of Bagyong Frank way back in 2008. Very devastating and shocking event for we were not used to this unlike the people there in Luzon. But thru the help of our local government and of course, the community, we recovered fast. Flood way was opened, Brgy.'s put up a warning alarm to alert people, and put up a team for information dissemination in every brgy.
Point here is, no matter how much effort the government exerts to address the problem of climate change, it will not be a successful one if the community will not conform to the plan of the government.

Together we can do this

I live in the Philippines specifically in the province of Iloilo. We were a victim of Bagyong Frank way back in 2008. Very devastating and shocking event for we were not used to this unlike the people there in Luzon. But thru the help of our local government and of course, the community, we recovered fast. Flood way was opened, Brgy.'s put up a warning alarm to alert people, and put up a team for information dissemination in every brgy.
Point here is, no matter how much effort the government exerts to address the problem of climate change, it will not be a successful one if the community will not conform to the plan of the government.

Submitted by Deniel Sean V. Macapal on

This may be just an idea, but I think we're all looking at this the wrong way. Yes, I do agree that climate change is a "biggie" when it comes to problems - not only of the Philippines - but also of the world. But that does not mean that there will be one giant solution to fix everything up.

With all of the news articles of flash floods, typhoons, and other storms hitting the country, it does seem that we Filipinos are unprepared for climate change. But I'm starting to wonder why that is. As most Filipinos know - and should know, for that matter - the Philippines is no stranger to storms and all these other natural disasters especially during the rainy seasons. It has been this way for a very, very, very long time now and it didn't seem to bother us much back then. Why the sudden outbursts of panic?

The government has done a lot of improvement when it comes to preparedness for these calamities. I believe there are a lot of programs and projects that are concerned with this matter; for this, we must be thankful. But apparently, it's not quite enough. There are dozens - if not hundreds - of casualties with each passing storm. And it seems as though these fatalities will never cease. Have we learned nothing from the past typhoons?

You can put in a whole lot of new gadgets and knick-knacks that may help us adapt to climate change, but like it or not, climate change will still be here. Like they said, change is inevitable. Programs and projects won't work if the Filipinos still want to remain blissfully ignorant. All these ordinances and fines won't help if we don't cooperate. I think this is the real problem.

Climate change is not a problem; it's a side-effect. Like it or not, every decision we make affects something somewhere else. People are aware of what their actions create, but like I said earlier, we choose to turn a blind eye over the matter. Which is why programs don't work effectively, storms that keep hitting us keep getting harsher and harsher, and every year, every time a typhoon comes our way, people still die.

I don't think we need programs and projects right now. They help, yes, but what we really need is someone or something to ignite the fire in us. We have become careless over the years. We need someone to re-open everyone's eyes for us to get up our couch and start doing something. For us to fix this chaos we led ourselves into, we need each and every one of us. The Filipinos are worth dying for but we have to prove to ourselves that we are worth living for, too.

These next few years will be crucial for the improvement of our security against weather calamities and global climate change.

The planning aspect of the answer we give to the problem of global warming is finished. The government has put its best plans forward, its best minds to work. The phase that we must now act upon with the utmost care is the execution of said plans. The quality and degree of our action will decide the outcome of our situation in the next decade or so. It can start with the people. It sounds cliché, but it's true. The cumulative efforts as a nation could make or break our climate preparedness.

The Philippine's action on the problem of global warming will contribute to the global solution. It's not one nation's efforts, but a global effort. In this problem we face, the collective effort and cooperation as global citizens will improve our situation.

Submitted by KAREN ADRIENNE MANALO on

The population in the NCR in the year 2010 according to NSO is 11, 855,975. Now for example NCR is where the eye of the strongest storm yet to come this year (2013) hits. The People’s Survival Fund only has an initial fund of P 1 billion. Let’s say a lot of people in the NCR got badly hit and now 80% of that population (9,484,780 citizens) have no homes left nor do they have the resources to buy food or to produce food. The important thing to address right now is to feed these people. To be able to accommodate everyone, the government allots P25 each for a single person’s meal. That would be P 237,119,500 but they can’t just let these people eat 1 meal a day. There will be children in that population so they’ll have to push through with the basic 3 meals per day. That is summed up to P 711,358,500. Now since they have no homes and it is impossible to rehabilitate all of them all at once, this population stays as the government’s problem for at least a week at the least. There 3 meals a day for the whole week will cost the government P 4,979,509,500. The government is P 3,979,509,500 short from their initial fund of P1 billion.
What happens then? The people starve? Let’s not forget, that is only 80% of the population in the NCR region for 2010. It’s 2013 now, for sure the population has grown at least 1.5% over the last 3 years. Also, NCR will not be the only region hit by that storm. It will still hit the at least the whole part of Luzon. That measly P1 billion is no match for this tragedy. It may be an initial fund but with how corrupt our government is, what with the pork barrel scandal, how can we be sure that the initial fund they set up actually grew? It might’ve been included in the scandal for all we know and there isn’t actually a full P1 billion.
Now my question is, how will the government address this problem now? Freak storms are not the only ones that causes the government’s problems with the evolving climate change issue. Droughts are also very problematic especially to those farmers involved in the Philippines’ rice production. Add to that problem is that the institutions and reformations that the government established are overlapping in their responsibilities and so not every “step to betterment” is addressed in the climate change issue.
References:
The World Bank. (n.d.). Getting a Grip…on Climate Change in the Philippines. Retrieved on October 2, 2013 from http://www.worldbank.org/content/dam/Worldbank/document/EAP/Philippines/OverviewCPEIR.pdf.
NSO Statistical News: NCR in Figures. Retrieved on October 2, 2013 from http://nso-ncr.ph/.

The Philippines is already feeling the consequences of climate change.For example ,the landslide in Ormoc killed a lot of people and about a thousand of people effective related to landslide and flash flood.Widespread o mining and deforestation were blamed for flash flood .If our Goverment will not push harder to it's different climate institutions to do their job properly ,this climate program will not be effective.
I think the CCC which is solely responsible for for a number of key functions such as leading climate policy making and coordinating,monitoring and evaluating climate programs and action plans,and because of it's wide array of responsibilities ,the CCC has not been able to divert enough resources to advocate effectively for immediate action on climate change.In my opinion,this department have an insufficient member of knowledgeable and skilled staff.They should hire skilled staff,lack of knowledge management system have been key barriers for scaling up climate action in Department and LGUs.
Although there are different institutions who are initially responsible for the climate change phenomena like typhoon,flood,flash flood that have been affecting the Philippines,however,each Filipino individual must do his/her share to at least slow down if not prevented the drastic climate change.For example,we should be more discipline by not using plastic,use air-condition appropriately or conserve energy.

Question:Do you think we and the Goverment are doing enough to protect our Mother Earth?

http://www.worldbank.org/content/dam/Worldbank/document/EAP/Philippines/Final%20ExReport.pdf

Submitted by Plinky Limpingco on

The most devastating and highly profiled effect of Climate Change in the country now is the flooding of urban areas. With the density of people living in these regions and as the capital for the economic vein of the country, immediate solutions are necessary. Though residents have been considerably become prepared these past seasons since the deluge of Ondoy, the rapidly rising floods have only become a common occurence and even if underground canals have been replaced with bigger ones, it is not enough. I have seen flood patrols on a main avenue but these are obviously not in proportion to the population size and probability of a disaster. Efficient urban planning is key to a better urban landscape. Aside from the lack of regulation and infrastructures to alleviate the problem, the budget for disaster relief programs and the PAGASA, are either mishandled or just not enough. The minimal wage for the scientists and PAGASA workers is not the only thing that affects the institution's performance, but also because of the outdated equipment essential for the monitoring of weather risks. As natural disasters seem to become more frequent and unpredictable, organizations concerning emergency and disaster relief should always be amply funded but also properly accounted for, to cater to those who will be in need. From the researchers to the LGUs, the reporters, the hospitals, and the social workers, everyone should be properly equipped and coordinated.

Relief efforts and assistance to the farmers and fishermen should be looked into as well. These producers do not only lose profits during disasters, but also their capital investments when their harvest fall victim to either El nino and La Nina.

The path to cleaner energy should be encouraged by the state. Not only the use of fossil fuel is harmful to the environment, such as the fuel-burning vehicles that clog the Metro's street and the oil slick left behind by boats, big or small, but also of its storage and transportation, which should be properly regulated, so as to prevent devastating oil leaks that will affect not only the communities near these coasts, but also the marine environment below.

Public Awareness should be cultivated to mobilize mass initiative and to be part of the solution, even in the simplest of ways.

Submitted by Christian Bernard Alvero on

First of all I am glad to know that the Philippine government is doing something to cope with climate change. I just hope that the funds released will be utilized properly to be able to come up with a solution or preventive measures when calamities strikes us.

Climate change is not the problem of the government alone, it is our problem too. Most of the Filipinos like to blame the government in almost any problem we encounter like floods, air pollution and even traffic jams. It is hurting to say that most of us cannot follow even the simple rules like proper garbage disposal and obeying traffic rules. We need to have a personal level of understanding that this country is ours and we are the one who need to take care of it. Public participation and awareness is needed to address the issues along with strong political will to resolve the problem.

As we have seen in the news I believe most Filipinos are more prepared now whenever floods hits us. However there are still others that remain unaware or maybe don’t care.

As an ordinary citizen I need to be more aware what is happening in our environment and participate in environmental projects. This is issue will not be solved by the government alone; we need to be part of the solution.

Institute the Corporate Fund Facility (CFF) and create a mechanism to curve corporate greed!

It has been an established fact in various studies that the biggest contributors to the production of green house gas (GHG) which causes global warming, and eventually, climate change- are not individuals but the big corporations which are engaged in industrial production, mechanized agriculture, mining and other commercial ventures. In general, all development initiatives, waste and consumerism do contribute to GHG emission on a global scale.
Industrial production’s wanton consumption of fossil fuel which emits enormous amount of carbon is aggravated by unparalleled and unplanned exploitation of natural resources, deforestation, corporate agriculture, pollution and degradation of the essential ecological life. The massive industrial production for commerce under the capitalist system is unparalleled in the history of the planet. Since the outset of the capitalist system in the 1700s going to the industrial revolution- the world has seen massive wastage of natural resources and gigantic waste and pollution production.

Now who shall be blamed for climate change?

Both the media and the church would from time to time appear to issue challenges which seemingly put blames on individuals and households. Yet the fact remains that the capitalist system through giant multinational and transnational corporations- which are engaged in industrial production and distribution- are the biggest culprits in CHG emission and tremendous waste production.
Facts may attest that no time in history had the peril of climate change been felt, except today during the epoch of massive industrial production, its subsequent waste resultants and the reckless degradation of environment to fuel up the massive and uninterrupted capitalist production for profit.

Thus, to avert the humanity’s march to doom and to arrest climate change, mitigation initiatives shall require government regulation to curb corporate greed and sustainable green environment. Radical shift in government role and policies are needed if optimism shall remain for saving the planet from cataclysmic disaster.

But can capitalism’s drive for profit be regulated?

We doubt it can be, but a powerful mass initiatives- a mass movement of sorts under the tutelage of environmentalists, mass activists, academicians, the church workers and ordinary people may change the course of history. Little has to be expected with government which are controlled by big capitalists themselves.
A powerful international movement for saving the planet may be more powerful than governments which regularly beg alms and are at the behest of giant corporate organizations.

This is the reason why we find the prescriptions set by the UN on the Philippines, in relation to the campaign against climate change as a bit weak, as outlined herein, to wit:

>strengthening planning, execution, and financing framework for climate change;
>enhancing leadership and accountability through monitoring, evaluation, and review of climate change policies and activities;
>building capacity and managing chang.;

With this framework, the Filipino people can push their government to institute what can be done and what are the most doable things for the campaign to climate change. We would thus think that the below cited 2 initiatives can be done almost effortlessly by the Philippine government-

-Institute a Corporate Fund Facility (CFF);
-Initiate measures to curve corporate greed on environmental degradation.

How the government may do this?

A congress or a summit by corporate organizations in the Philippines can be called-up / organized wherein each corporate organization shall pledge a seeding amount for the continuing and moving fund. Such fund shall be used for whatever planned action, e.g. reforestation, cleaning of waterways, etc. etc. to avert the effects of climate change and GHG.

Similarly, the government through the Climate Change Commission CCC) shall seek partnership with the private sector forge the broadest alliance which shall monitor compliance by corporate organizations on the standards, laws and regulations pertaining to initiatives and plants which have something to do with the environment, emission of gasses and other environment degrading activities.

Anticipating government ineptness and corruption, the private-public partnership form of organization can be sustained by the fund created from the CFF. Organizations with integrity and good track records like the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP), the Makati Business Club (MBC) and many more must be mobilized towards the cause.

The people may not rely on the government soly. Thus advocates and environmental activists must push the government, forge unity among the greatest number of people and organizations, corporate or mass-based, alike to build a common front against the continuing erosion of climate and environment stability and balanced which is clearly caused by capitalist reckless and massive drive for profit.

Cause oriented groups and veteran street parliamentarians may take up the cudgels for the cause. They may provide the core programmatic trajectory of the movement as well as the muscle of organizations for the initiative to be self-sustaining in attracting a wide number of supporters as well as in compelling the government to act on the issue.

A mass movement of sort with an agenda and direction to save mother earth may simply do the difference.

Submitted by James Harvey Maceda on

Nowadays, we are experiencing climate change and it seems that it is getting worse. First of all, who is really the one who causes this problem? It is us, all of us. There is no one else to be blame and not even the government. It is because of the people in this world that’s why this problem arises. We are the ones who cause this problem and now we are experiencing its effect. As written in the article, it is said that our government is making project in concern to this problem. Are the projects of the government is enough in this matter? Why do the people can’t feel even just the slightest change or improvement? We can’t rely everything on our government. Given that many people are complaining to the administration, why not make a move on themselves. I mean we as individuals of this world should also move for the betterment not only for their country but also for the whole world because this climate change affects everybody. We should start a change on ourselves. Self discipline in every individual will be a great help in the world.
The world is experiencing different calamities such as: floods, typhoon, earthquakes and the like. Maybe these disasters are only one of the ways of our mother earth to give back what we deserve for polluting and destroying its beauty. Of course we don’t want for the world to end but base on our actions, we are really the one who speeds or make the world faster to end. Slowly by slowly we are devouring our own living place. Just compare the Earth before and now. Before, our Earth is full of life but now we can see pollutions everywhere. Many people are aware of what’s happening on the world but not even taking an action. It seems many people don’t care on what is happening on its surroundings. Through this opportunity, let me encourage you to take an action for our world. Change will start on us!

Submitted by Neriza Almirol on

There are two approaches in answering this query: One is the macro while the other is the micro approach.
The Macro Approach: Republic Act 9729 otherwise known as the Climate Change Act of 2009 introduced terms that would address issues and provide impetus to enforcement of policies stated therein. Terms include the following:

-“Global Warming” refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earth’s near-surface air and oceans that is associated with the increased concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

-“Greenhouse effect” refers to the process by which the absorption of infrared radiation by the atmosphere warms the Earth.

-“Greenhouse gases (GHG)” refers to constituents of the atmosphere that contribute to the greenhouse effect including, but not limited to, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydro fluorocarbons, per fluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride.

-“Mainstreaming” refers to the integration of policies and measures that address climate change into development planning and sectorial decision-making.

-“Mitigation” in the context of climate change, refers to human intervention to address anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of all GHG, including ozone- depleting substances and their substitutes.

-“Mitigation potential” shall refer to the scale of GHG reductions that could be made, relative to emission baselines, for a given level of carbon price (expressed in cost per unit of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions avoided or reduced).

-“Sea level rise” refers to an increase in sea level which may be influenced by factors like global warming through expansion of sea water as the oceans warm and melting of ice over land and local factors such as land subsidence.

This RA also provided for the creation of the Climate Change Commission. We, in the macro level approach, cannot be found lacking in effort in terms of policies and lawmaking. Our policies cover a wide range of the climate range issue:

-RA 9275 - also known as the Philippine Clean Water Act of 2004 – an act providing a comprehensive water quality management and for other purposes.

-R.A. 9003 – The Solid Waste Management Act of 2001- an act providing for an ecological solid waste management program, creating the necessary institutional mechanisms and incentives, declaring certain acts prohibited and providing penalties, appropriating funds therefore, and for other purposes.

From the standpoint of laws and policies, we, as a nation cover land, sea and the atmosphere. We, as a state of policy makers, can state categorically that we are at the forefront in addressing the Climate Change item. We are neither lacking in experience when it comes to lawmaking and templates since we follow international policies since the Commonwealth.

The micro level approach is not lacking as well. Just recently in line with the recent events of Ondoy, Sept 26, 2009 and the Habagat of the same year and 2012 and August of this year, 2013. Ordinances banning plastic bags have been in place. Anti-smoking campaigns and ordinances have been in place since the early 1990’s. Barangay level movements such as the Solid Material Recovery Facility provide for recycling and upcycling of solid waste. UP and Ateneo have programs for composting and alternative sources of energy in order to reduce carbon emission from traditional energy sources. Just recently La Salle launched Sikat II, a solar powered car which will join an international race for inventions as such in Australia. La Salle will represent our country.

With all these components in place, we are addressing the issue of Climate Change. Are we doing enough? Yes, in terms of policies. We need to do two things as a nation: (1) Enforce and (2) Support.

Enforcement needs political and unbiased will. Partisan politics is a hindrance to this. Enough said. Supporting grassroots movement will do a lot to entice innovators and activists to initiate projects that will surpass the “ningas cogon” stage.

Lastly, solid Implementing Rules and Regulation can assist local government unit enforcers in clamping down on violators of ordinances. Execution of policies is the key.

Submitted by Sylvia Bermejo Austria on

The change in our climate is very apparent. Davao City has not been experiencing typhoon just like other places in the country. I suspect the gulf seem to cover the city from its harsh effects. I can remember that the nearest place from the city I knew battered by bad weather is Surigao area. The devastation that happened to Davao Oriental brought by typhoon Pablo is something I thought will not happen to the province of Davao. I heard on the news the sentiments aired by the employees of PAGASA regarding their hazard pay. I feel that they are one agency needed to be on the frontline with regards to our desire to bring down the awareness to the masses for a collective and comprehensive move to manage climate change.
Honestly I have strong apprehension regarding the confusion in organizational setup, budget source and appropriation, and apparent lack of clarity of roles of the agencies that are posing difficulty in monitoring and evaluations of the goals of CCC. I hope we will have a more determined will power to manage the preservation of our river banks and shorelines and relocate houses erected in those areas. The government is spending more in rehabilitation and damage expenditures to the residents in those areas because their eyes are more focused on the number of voters the areas represent that will affect their elected positions. A significant lower number of damaged properties and loss of lives will result if our river banks and shorelines are inhabited.

I grew up in Bataan and never experienced any flood reaching inside our house which is located in a subdivision until typhoon Maring last August 17 this year. Although typhoon Ondoy way back 2011 also devastated our province and another one, “ Habagat” last year, I never realized we will be flooded as high as knee-deep inside and neck-deep outside our house. Power, as anticipated had been cut ,while water supply was scarce. Adrenaline rush overpowered the whole household to ensure the safety of our appliances and furniture.The only thing positive about the situation was the pre-approval of calamity loan in the office.
The impacts of climate change are a daily reality for 8 out of ten Filipinos, according to recent survey initiated by the World Bank. Those questioned said that they were personally feeling the effects of climate change, which are particularly pronounced across South East Asia.The Philippines is the third most vulnerable country in the world to extreme weather events, such as typhoons, floods, landslides and droughts.

Like what was written on the World Bank report, the government had initiated a lot of ways to be ready for every calamity . The President created Climate Change Act of 2009 which called for the formulation of National Framework Strategy on Climate Change.These are a part of National Climate Change Action Plan or NCCAP.He even started having a 1 billion PSF or People’s Survival Fund. On the local units, some mayors even implemented the “Earth Hour” (which encourages all establishments and homes to cut-off electric power in one hour all at the same time to encourage energy conservation which can lessen the effects of global warming. Others initiated the implementation of “no plastic” campaign and waste seggregation to recycle wastes and prevent clogging of sewage pipes to avoid the cause of floods.Also, illegal settlers are being transferred to government-owned housing projects.

Although the effectiveness of each result had been very slow as we still experience climate change devastations,we have to be more positive and united in role-modelling and advocating our campaign for “a sustainable life”- a life which is safe not only to the human specie but the whole race of living things as well. Let us be more disciplined and visionary as a people. The greenhouse effect is dawning on us too fast, almost at the same rate of the population increase. Hence, we should not stop or even slow down but rather, we must think more and act fast !!!

Additional Reference:
http://www.rtcc.org/2013/07/17/85-of-filipinos-say-they-are-feeling-effects-of-climate-change/

Submitted by Joanna Marie R. Magsakay on

I am actually amused that the government has finally decided to take action in what has been a very vicious and impossibly unseen major problem of our nation in the past years. Although I think that most of our citizens are already knowledgeable of what climate change is and what our careless actions has already brought us into, the government’s decision and plans in taking action have not been widespread. Taking small steps is good but there are still arguments that leave me hanging.

Why just now? Why only after the four aforementioned drastic, destructive phenomena? The citizens already know what climate change can destroy and we are ready for change. We are only waiting for the government to lead us because that their job; to lead the nation. Most of us have already started helping the environment within ourselves, our households and our community. But we also need the support of our leaders just as they need ours especially when implementing projects like the Climate Change Commission’s.

There are still bugs that need fixing within the CCC. And it seemed like the government has already lost its focus on the commission’s agenda. It currently lacks manpower, budget and mitigation. As of now, we are lacking time and funds with developmental projects; we need projects that will alleviate our country’s current condition. The administration is clearly doing something but is it enough? Or they’re only doing it for publicity? And again, where did the 1B allocated budget go?

We, the citizens of the Philippines, need to be informed with what the government is up to especially when it is for the betterment of every Filipino’s life and most importantly, our country itself. With the CCC already established, what we all need now is everyone’s awareness, a proper budget designation from the government, an even distribution of responsibilities to LGU’s and gov’t agencies and lastly, action.

Together we can do this

I live in the Philippines specifically in the province of Iloilo. We were a victim of Bagyong Frank way back in 2008. Very devastating and shocking event for we were not used to this unlike the people there in Luzon. But through the help of our local government and of course, the community, we recovered fast. Flood way was opened, Brgy.'s put up a warning alarm to alert people, and put up a team for information dissemination in every brgy.

Point here is, no matter how much effort the government exerts to address the problem of climate change, it will not be a successful one if the community will not conform to the plan of the government.

In regards to the plan of the government, will they sustain funding these programs and projects with the rampant corruption happening in the country?

Submitted by Lara Santillan on

I am somehow glad that the Philippine government did something to help heal the environment and prevent further damage. In my opinion, they can only do so much since it would really depend on us, the citizens of this country, to help our communities in ensuring that everybody abides to environmental laws. The implementation of the said laws should be consistent and tougher penalties should be imposed on violators.
I was able to watch one episode of TV Patrol, where the host and former-VP, Noli de Castro, visited a community in Cagayan which has an ongoing crisis on black sand mining. He was able to share the sentiments of the people in that community. Despite the DENR's Memorandum to stop black sand mining, foreign companies still continuously mine black sand which I find implacable. Residents had to migrate because their homes were damaged by erosions. Most of the residents also lost their livelihood which is dependent on the fishing industry because of this illegal mining. (source: http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/video/nation/regions/08/28/13/cagayan-residents-blame -black-sand-mining-erosion)
I believe this is not only happening in Cagayan but in other regions as well. Is the government doing something about these illegal mining operations?
Lastly, the previous leaders of our country should have done something about this instead of just acting now when damage has been done. As the saying goes, “prevention is better than cure”, I believe this also applies to our environment.

“Getting a Grip … On Climate Change in the Philippines”

The above study details the magnitude of the climate change problems as it currently confronts the Philippines. In 2009, Typhoon Ketsana and Parma flooded metropolitan Manila, while Typhoon Washi was classed as the world’s deadliest storm of 2011, followed by Typhoon Bopha in 2012. The Aquino government then staffed up its Climate Change Commission (CCC) and tasked it with creating a National Strategic Framework on Climate Change and a Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP). These actions were accompanied by a 25 million USD funding appropriation to support the CCC. The government also requested a World Bank Study (Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review (CPEIR) to provide an external assessment of governmental expenditures regarding climate change, as well as its institutional capabilities to cope with the problem.

A careful read of the CPEIR indicates the presence of systemic problems that will critically handicap the mandate of the CCC if not addressed with the greatest urgency. The feedback provided by the World Bank Blog provides additional insight into the challenge of climate change as it affects the Philippines, particularly with regard to the level of consciousness of Filipino citizens as to the severity of the threat of the Philippines posed by climate change. Thus it is that both the CPEIR and the local citizenry have critical roles to play in confronting this issue with the seriousness it demands. A third factor critical to addressing the challenges of climate change—a factor not within the purview of the CPEIR study—is the role of the United Nations and other international bodies in addressing the problem of climate change at the global level. This is a particularly cogent issue since—apart from widespread deforestation for development projects, excessive vehicle emissions, and the free-style dumping of garbage and refuse by citizens—the Philippines is not an “industrial” polluter. Finally, not much is said in the CPEIR about the need for a joint “government/private sector” initiative to address climate change. Too much emphasis appears to have been placed on the government and its bureaucratic approach to the problem. I would suggest that the magnitude of the problem and the threat that it poses to “all” Filipinos calls for a nationwide public/private sector initiative.

It is evident from the CPEIR that the Philippine government has made a commitment to “staffing up” the CCC. Staffing-up, however, will have little or no effect—even with a modest level of funding if the “political will” of governmental leaders is not commensurate with the challenge at hand. The CPEIR notes that the government has taken the right steps in setting up a structure to begin to address the problems. This structure includes the Climate Change Commission, the Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change, and the People’s Survival Fund Board. Unfortunately, absent a comprehensive definition of the magnitude of the challenge, as well as clear thinking and a sense of utmost urgency, the government and its new bureaucratic structure to address climate change will simply have another bureaucracy that will do its best to make studies and file reports while the climate crisis currently facing the Philippines grows more ominous by the day. The CPEIR cites the following deficiencies within the government’s approach to the problem:

•Execution and coordination of climate actions are hindered by a lack of clarity in roles and responsibilities across institutions. This hinders leadership and accountability in implementing the climate agenda.
•The roles and relationships between the CCC and the other oversight agencies are not yet clarified, formulated, prioritized or streamlined.
•The Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change has not been fully effective in carrying out the climate agenda due to limited decision making opportunities and fragmented support.
•Systems are not in place to collect and integrate results from various Government Agencies, and a lack of agreed-upon indicators and targets has hindered the process of monitoring the integration of the NCCAP, impending an evaluation of results across climate PAPs.
•Departments have an insufficient numbers of knowledgeable and skilled staff on climate policy, financing and institutions. Knowledge gaps and the lack of knowledge management system have been key barriers for scaling up Climate Action in Departments and LGUs. Tools to support planning and prioritization are often not mainstreamed and too complex to use.

In summation, the challenges facing the Government of the Philippines in making its approach to climate change workable are daunting to say the least. Time is not on the side of the Philippines in this matter. It would appear that nothing less than a rethinking of the entire governmental approach to the problem—together with a nationwide conscious-raising initiative aimed at all Filipinos—is called for. Furthermore, the government cannot possibly tackle this problem by itself. It needs to mobilize a public/private sector initiative with the utmost urgency and “political will” as its driving force. Finally, plans at the national level should be coordinated with climate change initiatives at the international level since this is, by nature, a “global” problem.

Submitted by Feliza Urrutia on

One of the main characteristics of man is to adapt to whatever environment you put him in. One of the main characteristics of Filipinos is resourcefulness; and so whatever problem you put him in, he’ll surely find a way to make life convenient for himself again.

It was only recently that the government became alert of climate changes because that’s when they’ve become aware of the devastating effects it had on our country – and what scared them was that it was fast becoming an ordinary occurrence. So what are we doing about it?

The Aquino administration put CCC (Climate Change Commission) into act for it to oversee all climate change programs in the Philippines. Under it PSF (People’s Survival Fund) was created with a budget of one billion pesos to fund projects made by climate change programs. Other projects include spreading awareness about global warming. The Earth is currently at its warmest.

As the Philippines progresses and modernizes, our climate will become worse only if we don’t do anything about it. It’s not enough that humans are capable of adapting to their environment, because there will come a time when we’ve reached the extent of our adaptability and it will still not be enough for us. It’s either it engulfs us resulting to our extinction, or we evolve into an entirely new species. Regardless, it’s not something we want to happen. If we do something about it now, we can ensure the safety of the future generations.

Submitted by Monica Cassandra Capala on

Climate change has been an international concern for many years. The world is experiencing global crisis, especially in the Philippines where it has been experiencing natural calamities such as typhoons, earthquakes, landslides, floods and unpredictable weather.

I’ve been residing in the Philippines for the past 2 years, and before that, I was visiting every year. Without a doubt, I believe that Manila is a green house emitter with the uncontrolled pollution caused by the amount of cars on the road, the accumulation of rubbish and open burning.

I would like to share my observation. Coming from Australia and also visiting other countries such as China, Hong Kong, Singapore, USA, these countries are very disciplined in keeping their countries clean and to a relatively high standard. To simply put it, not all people, but many people in the Philippines lack discipline. The establishment of Climate Change Commission (CCC) should be acknowledged for taking the first few steps for improvement and prevention for the negative effects of climate change. Sadly, referring back to the article, it states that it lacks the funds and the manpower to be as effective as it is proposed to be. I completely understand that budget is scarce, therefore it will also lack in manpower, but if the Government took their time to educate the public, and do their best to implement rules into the mind’s of society, it would be much more effective.

Instead of being concerned about current issues, we should all be more concerned with the prevention of these issues reoccurring again. People need to realise how dire our situation is. The Philippines is very susceptive to natural disasters since it’s an archipelago, so as individuals, we all need to do our part to prevent further disasters from being extremely destructive such as:- throwing away rubbish, conserving energy and learning to walk or ride a bike every now and then to decrease pollution. One person may not change everything but if every individual does his or her part, then it would be more effective. Change starts from within. Change should start now.

Submitted by kenneth Sevlla on

We all know that Philippines is rich in terms of its biodiversity and many foreigners are coming here to experience the true beauty of our country, especially in terms of tourist spots like Puerto Princesa Underground river which belong to the seven wonders of the world.
But on the darker side, Philippines is a country which is more prone to disasters and other environmental phenomena like typhoons, landslides, flash floods and earthquakes. And these are all happens because of us.
Landslide buries us alive because we still continue doing the deforestation or cutting trees without planting. Flash flood flushes us because, we still throwing our trashes from everywhere, especially in the waterways that clogs the main drainage systems. Global warming burns us, because we still continue emitting greenhouse gasses like CFCs of chlorofluorocarbons from chemical sprays and also we still continue slaughtering livestocks.
There are more practices that can destroy our marine biodiversity like
• Muro-ami which is destroying the coral reefs.
• Hunting or killing of endangered species for food or for profit by selling its parts.
• Dynamite fishing that uses explosives to caught fish
• Disposing of chemicals from factories to all bodies of water like seas, oceans and lakes.
• Mining and selling of Black sands from beaches.
• Kaingin system or burning of plants and trees of simply “Forest Fires”

Try to ask ourselves, what can we contribute to our country? And we shall not rely ourselves in the government, but as an ordinary Filipino, we must act as one nation because the solution begins with ourselves, we can do this in simple ways, like cleaning our environment, The 3R practice which are reduce, reuse and recycle, stopping animal cruelty, travelling with the use of bicycles and planting more trees or simply called Reforestation. These are simple practices that not just only cleans our surroundings, but it save and helps to revive and to enrich our country.

This October 2, I was amazed in the news about the partnership of ADB (Asian Development Bank), The Philippine Government and (DOE) Department of Energy to transform the public transportation by widening the use of electric vehicles. It was first formed in the form of tricycles which they called E-Trikes in the Philippines , if you compare the difference of 2 trikes, e-trikes is very efficient, eco-friendly, and produces a higher income for E-trike drivers, why? For only 3 to 5 kWh of electricity, the e-trike can travel at a distance of 100 kph. Which only cost 50-60 pesos, unlike the conventional tricycle, which requires 5-7 litres of gasoline that already cost up to 250-350 pesos to travel at the same distance. The 200 peso difference in fuel saving will help the driver pay for the cost of e-trike or either, it can be his take home income, and also and in 2016, they had plan to produce 100,000 e-trikes to replace conventional tricycles. They had planned this to save the environment and maintain a clean air. And also to strengthen the transportation industry in eco-friendly way.
As what I have said, ask ourselves, what can we contribute to our country? And if you know the answer, then we should make it a reality. And as an ordinary Filipino individual, we can save the country in very simple ways, just stop doing the unwanted practices and start doing what is right and what makes the country better and beautiful. So that we can prove that “It is more fun the Philippines”.

Submitted by Junelyn Frando on

After different disastrous natural calamities that have affected our country since Ondoy in 2009 and with all recommended measures and mitigation the government is implementing and planning mentioned in the article "Filipinos, how are you adapting to climate change?", I believed that the government really is starting to adapt to climate change.

Adaptation to changes is something that humans and animals are aware of and have been doing since before, such as migration of animals and people building and designing shelters or even wearing clothes suitable to the climate. But since a dramatic climatic change is now more obvious and more visible compared to several years ago, it gives negative impact on us and is affecting a lot of people and this kind of adaptation we are facing now is more challenging.

Awareness campaigns, documentaries about climate change and issues related to it, and peoples' perspectives and different adaptations to climate change are all helpful. Not only this information helps strengthen our awareness, but also helps us deal with this "unavoidable change." Given all this help and information we need to fully understand what climate change is all about, it made me realize and ask, "How are Filipinos adapting to climate change and what can 'I' do to contribute or help fight it?"

Climate change with its serious threats and inevitable effects seems too impossible to stop. Lessening or zeroing in human greenhouse gas emission seems challenging. But we, Filipinos, becoming more aware of this threat and accepting the fact that our country is vulnerable to this change are just some ways we can learn to adapt and the are even more ways for us to do to help.

We have a role to play as "caretaker" of this world and a responsibility to do, for we are liable for destruction in our surroundings and that we are the ones who have the power to alter our environment. After all, climate affects everything in our lives and everything surrounds us that keep our lives going. Everyone should act now.

Question: What do you think would be the most effective way(s) to help other Filipinos fully understand and become aware of the serious effects of the climate change and how can Filipinos encourage one another to act on this change?

References

"Adapting to climate change"
Retrieved on October 3, 2013 from http://www.philstar.com/opinion/2013/06/27/958774/adapting-climate-change

I have read the Word Bank report entitled “GETTING A GRIP on Climate Change in the Philippines.” I am not surprised at all that the climate change will get worse in the near future and will be a big threat to human survival. Preventing climate change is a long process. It needs a lot of work that will take a very long time to prevent the climate change to worsen.

I’m glad that the government is taking steps to prevent climate change but it is far from enough. Philippines is not a rich country but I believe our funds are enough to sustain the safety of the people from disasters like floods and landslides. The biggest problem in our country is not about money but love. The lack of love of the people in our country is the problem. If the leaders really love our country then there would be only few corrupt leaders. If the professionals really love our country then they will work here. If the citizens love our country then some people will stop littering. Love may not stop us to use crude oil for energy but the important thing is that we did something.

Every people in this world needs to be educated on this matter and everyone should be united to prevent these things. Even if there are lots of programs and activities about climate change, it will still not be successful if people will not cooperate. Everyone should wake up to the truth that our environment, our planet and our lives are not permanent for us to take life for granted. Everyone should care; everyone should step up, not just me, not just the government but each and every one of us.

Submitted by Lourdes Babagay on

Yes, indeed, climate change is upon us. At first there was awareness, we heard it from the news, supported by reports and campaigns all over the world. Now we are experiencing the used to be predictions by scientists and researchers. Global warming is happening; environmental changes will escalate; our habitat is changing to new conditions were we have to adapt to those changes.

In the recent years, we experienced drastic change in our climate. As what stated in The World Bank (WB) report-Getting a grip on climate change in the Philippines, our country is vulnerable and expose to severe climate-related events; thus affects our agricultural productivity as well as fisheries, and more. Population increase plus innovations that have adverse effects on our environment worsen this condition that we are experiencing now.

How are we adapting? We have to act now! Kudos to our present administration for acknowledging the facts and initiating a plan, adopting the Climate Change Act (CCA), an adaptation measure to help us. We need to push the government to finalize and make this plan operational. Make our officials work, by informing the residents at the local level, gather all the information, make a plan, set the roles and responsibilities, coordinate with the national level, don’t just let them sit and wait for funds to drop in their hands. Use the budget “wisely”.

As individuals, Filipinos, do your part as a member of this world. We all have our shares of ruining our own habitat. Our environment is changing because of the changes we created, now its turning back to us. Now we have to adopt to this new conditions of environment change.

Submitted by Andrew Francisco on

Well, we aren’t. Or at least a large majority of us aren’t adapting to climate change.
Year, after year it seems that we see the same thing, when the rainy season comes, parts of the country become flooded. People who live in areas worst hit are probably used to it already, and are always packed and ready to go to an evacuation center the moment it rains. Certain organizations are always ready to rescue, to provide relief, etc. during the rainy season. That is what has become. While it does cause a great deal of damage to property, the economy, to people we do not seem to be concerned about preventing these floods, some people even contribute to it to make a quick buck.
Doctors say prevention is better than cure, but we seem to have ignored this advice when it comes to our flooding problem. While people would point to different causes, such as urban planning, overpopulation, etc., it cannot be doubted that one of the biggest culprits is climate change.
The average Filipino does not seem to be doing much to adapt to climate change. Old practices that contribute to climate change such as burning garbage are still rampant. People still lack discipline when it comes to keeping the environment clean; we often see bodies of water filled with garbage. People still choose to create settlements in areas where they should not such as river banks.
But the people may be acting the way they do due to lack of information. The government’s programs seem to lack emphasis on Knowledge and Capacity Development. Experts lack the skills and the knowledge base and thus are unable to raise public awareness. Though there are encouraging signs, such as the budget for climate change constantly increasing, what we get from the World Bank’s report is that the government seems to be unorganized and may not be tackling climate change in the right manner. And as is the case with our government, the caveat is that the money may not be going to the appropriate places.

Climate change. It is one of the worst problems today faced not only by the Philippines, but the rest of the world as well. Without enough concern and actions to further prevent it, climate change will continue for a lifetime, thus making serious consequences in wildlife, environment, and overall wellness of organisms.
What I have observed in my life with regards to climate change is that it is happening everyday around my surroundings. When I was in fifth grade, I, along with my schoolmates, participated in a public speaking contest which had a topic of global warming. Global warming and climate change are related to each other, as from what I’ve read in the modules of my Social Science subject. From my understandings, global warming occurs when there is a change of the Earth’s climate due to greenhouse gases. Greenhouse gases get into the atmosphere, which leads to a rise of the air temperature outside.
Another thing that I have witnessed is one of the notorious causes of climate change and global warming: pollution. Gases, mostly coming from smoke-belching vehicles and factories, arise into the atmosphere, resulting in polluted air. As I said earlier, this can cause serious health consequences to organisms (i.e. humans, plants, animals), as well as the environment being compromised.
I understand that the government of the Philippines is acting now to remedy this natural mess. I personally applaud them for doing so, for this will gradually reduce the negativities of the ecosystem and environment, such as that of climate change.
With all that information at hand, I have some questions and concerns:
1.) Will the government act the necessary ways to prevent climate change for a lifetime?
2.) Shall the government also encourage the public to do their own ways as well to prevent the long-term effects of climate change and global warming?
Thank you for taking the time to read my viewpoints and concerns.

Submitted by Hannah Kim on

Climate change is really happening so fast than we think.
This year the Philippines experienced typhoons, heavy rains for several days. Many people died in the flashfloods and mudslides unleashed by the storm.
The question now here is, Do the government and the people in the Philippines and around the world are ready to face climate change?
How many percent of the total budget funds of the government will fall to the preparation of Disaster Program/Law?
What are the strategies of the government in imparting the ways on how to use the 3R (Reduce, Reuse and Recycle) and what activities that we the citizen of the country can do to preserve our mother land?
How do we manage ourselves in the preparation of climate change?
Even there rules and laws that were enacted by the government in helping our environment still there are times that we don’t follow.
Is the government responsible for this or we as the citizens of the country are the responsible individual?
I believe that we are also responsible for this and we need to take part in preserving the earth. The government is not the only one responsible to it, we also need to be conscientious in every action that we do.

Submitted by Jem Florece on

It is evident that climate change is happening in the Philippines, it very alarming once you think about it. Various sectors of Philippines' livelihood is affected by this global phenomenon. I like to compare it with what happened before which was the Ice Age, but it is totally more huge of an impact. The methods that the government of the Philippines is admirable, for it can really help at least minimize the change in weather. Involving local government units and teaching them disaster risk programs in relation to climate change is a start. The fact that the Philippines' economy is booming and industrialization can be seen, the country needs to start climate change programs in relation to economy increase. As a citizen of the Philippines, I think i can start the change by conserving energy and know the disaster aide so that once struck by a huge typhoon again, it will at least ease the hardship. Around 2013 various typhoons already struck the country and the Filipinos suffering as their houses getting damaged especially the slums area in Manila. I think one thing that the government should do is flooding planning of where to put the flooded water in Manila, thus having a good drainage system is one solution. Relocation of illegal settlers around the city is a good solution to reduce human risk too.

Submitted by Christian Cahapin on

Naturally and obviously, climate change is getting worse. Changes affected casualties not just in the Philippines but also in other countries.
As time goes by, little by little, climate change becomes a serious threat. A threat that if we can't resolve immediately may lead to catastrophe or even worst.
We, Filipinos are witnessing events unparalleled to Philippine history. Tragic events such as floods, landslide and even earthquake caused tremendous effect in our daily lives. It makes me sadden, whenever I think of it. Problems because of our carelessness and ignorance claims thousand of lives. At some point I realized that though climate change is inevitable, changes start because of human.

I'd like to share some predictions about global climate change according to Mr. Hawking.

>"As scientists, we understand the dangers of nuclear weapons and their devastating effects, and we are learning how human activities and technologies are affecting climate systems in ways that may forever change life on Earth. As citizens of the world, we have a duty to alert the public to the unnecessary risks that we live with every day, and to the perils we foresee if governments and societies do not take action now to render nuclear weapons obsolete and to prevent further climate change... There’s a realization that we are changing our climate for the worse. That would have catastrophic effects. Although the threat is not as dire as that of nuclear weapons right now, in the long term we are looking at a serious threat."

>"The danger is that global warming may become self-sustaining, if it has not done so already. The melting of the Arctic and Antarctic ice caps reduces the fraction of solar energy reflected back into space, and so increases the temperature further. Climate change may kill off the Amazon and other rain forests, and so eliminate once one of the main ways in which carbon dioxide is removed from the atmosphere. The rise in sea temperature may trigger the release of large quantities of carbon dioxide, trapped as hydrides on the ocean floor. Both these phenomena would increase the greenhouse effect, and so global warming further. We have to reverse global warming urgently, if we still can. "

>"I don't think the human race will survive the next thousand years, unless we spread into space. There are too many accidents that can befall life on a single planet. But I'm an optimist. We will reach out to the stars."

As stated in the predictions, human activities affected the climate
change. Thus, everyone of us is responsible of our actions. Most of us, Filipinos realized important things when it is gone,we take things for granted without realizing what would be the outcome. But it is not to late. We can change the world we live in, solutions for climate change is in our hand. Let us all stand and have the courage to take an action to protect our mother nature. Let us help the government to solve this problem and take our part to make this place a better place to live in.

Submitted by Shiela Andes on

Climate change is one of the most fundamental challenges ever to confront humanity. Adaptation plays an important role, in terms on dealing with the present and future impacts of climate change. The concept of adaptation has been variously defined. It refers to the measures taken in response to climate change, to reduce the adverse impacts or to take advantage of opportunities offered by such changes. The development priorities of countries provide opportunities for widening the scope of adaptation policies. In addition to climate change, the future vulnerability of developing countries will also depend on their development path.

“I have nothing against those people who keep on blaming the government, on how they handle the issue with climate change”. They may have handled it not the way most of us want it to be, but the question here is. Why and where did it all start? US. From people who do not care about his/her environment. Who do not care on what this would bring us in the future? Those illegal logging, pollutions, etc. It’s not too late. Let’s us all start helping the country to surpass the calamities the country is continuously encountering by starting to help ourselves realizing how can we be of help. We, not only the government should help resolve the issue but we should join forces to be able to help the country against climate change. Also, we can help by adapting ourselves on the possible resolutions on how to prevent climate change.

Adaptation is an ongoing, flexible process that seeks to increase resilience to present and future risks. It is necessary to develop and adopt a proactive, systematic, and integrated approach, which is cost-effective and offers durable and long-term solutions. It is also important to remember that climate risks and adaptation priorities vary across regions, countries and sectors.

A Better Place for Everyone

How do we the save the world, the world where we live in today? Start it with ourselves, by doing everything we can to clean and make our world green again. As an individual we have many responsibilities and obligations to help our world to become a better place.

In the Philippines, the Filipinos have experience the impacts of climate change. The Pinoy community really feels the effects of this climate change, they become aware in a so called “Global Warming” and this awareness brought us many values in life such as energy conservation, decrease the use of motor vehicles and all things that may help to prevent air pollution. These examples out of so many will help us to reduce the increase of heat temperature. However as an individual I would like to ask and to seek help to our country’s leaders to intense not only the laws to save our world but also the implementation of high security and standards like in our emission testing centers, still now there are so many motor vehicles running with a heavy smokes “carbon monoxide” that contributes air pollution that may cause climate change.

If the rise of heat temperature continues, the land will become dry and will cause death of our rice fields and agricultural land as well as loses of our water and land animals. Imagine that we live in this world because the earth is the only planet that have all this natural resources for us to live, and yet this individual will not participate to help save our environment, and yet our “Inang Kalikasan” died, what do you think will happen to us?

There are so many small things that the individual could do to save our world, stop smoking, don’t trash your waste improperly, don’t use such appliances that not necessary to save electricity, despite of having illegal loggings why not to plants trees, despite of having illegal fishing, why not to save our coral reefs and plant mangroves to produce more fishes and many many whys? Do you have concerns to answer all those questions, concern to be one of us who are crying for those families who died in floods, soil erosion, typhoons and other climate disasters?

As one, we can help our society to bring a new world, a new place where new generations can live a better life, a clean life and a wonderful life ever. I wish that every Pinoy always remember this song “Masdan Mo ang Kapaligiran” sung by Asin.

“Wala ka bang napapansin sa iyong mga kapaligiran?
Kay dumi na ng hangin, pati na ang mga ilog natin.

Hindi na masama ang pag-unlad at malayu-layo na rin ang ating narrating,
ngunit masdan mo ang tubig sa dagat dati'y kulay asul ngayo'y naging itim
Ang mga duming ating ikinalat sa hangin sa langit huwag na nating paabutin
Upang kung tayo'y pumanaw man, sariwang hangin sa langit natin matitikman

Mayron lang akong hinihiling sa aking pagpanaw sana ay tag-ulan
Gitara ko ay aking dadalhin upang sa ulap na lang tayo magkantahan

May mga batang ngayon lang isinilang may hangin pa kayang matitikman?
may mga puno pa kaya silang aakyatin, may mga ilog pa kayang lalanguyan?

And this is also my concerns and questions to your blog, Does our new generations have a place for them to experience how wonderful our nature is, to breath clean air and experience clean environment?

Do they have trees to climb, a clean river to swim? I am glad and thankful that once in my life, I have experience how beautiful the nature of our world is and I wish my child and grandchildren in the future could also have those experiences too.

Submitted by Kim Percival Sinchioco on

The reason why we don’t care much about global warming issue is most of us are innocent about the impacts it would bring to us. The government plays vital role for us to get through this global challenge, and we as an individual, it is our responsibility to support the government projects and programs. Part of the challenge is how will the government increase the awareness of people in an effective way? We observed a drastic increase in temperature as early as year 2000, but I don’t think we have taken enough action to address this matter. Change is part of the process, the world has been changing since day one of its existence. But that should not be an excuse doing nothing about it. Our safety, livelihood and future are in great risk. Local government has to be more strict this time implementing rules and policy with regards to waste management, regulation of GHG, and natural resources consumption. We have to discipline ourselves, I am definitely sure you would not want the time to come for Mother Nature to discipline us. While reading the WB report on climate change some questions and thoughts came up like, Is it really impossible to live an industrialize life without bringing detrimental effects to environment? Given the fact that emissions cause by human activities, in particular, the burning of fossil fuels, as are primary energy source are increasing the world's atmospheric concentrations of greenhouses gases. Secondly, when is the expected time for the climate policy reform to be aligned with its development plans and policies to reach its full effectiveness? We are running out of time and the effects seems to be very visible on this present day caused by our irresponsible action and lack of knowledge, hence it’s important to have a timeline and accurate forecasting about the development. Lastly, what are the actions being done to address the obstruction in regards with insufficient institutional capacity and planning tools complexity?

Overall, with all the conflicts about climate change, I am still delighted to know that the government is doing something to deal with climate change. One billion pesos as a fund for projects and program will surely move us forward reaching compromise if spent reasonably. We are all involved in this situation where in the only way out is unity, working hand in hand in making earth a better place to live for everyone.

Submitted by Jean Chong on

Climate change has been around for quite some time. They say the reason behind it is the gases that are thinning the atmosphere of the polar caps. It is also preventing the heat to be released away from earth. It is sometimes said that the earth heating is a normal phenomenon as we are in the middle of the ice age cycle.

High emitting countries have addressed the issue 20 years ago. They tried to cut carbon emissions but they still persist. Nonetheless they have planned and try to foresee the problem and find a solution for it.

The Philippines is not much concerned with climate change in the past millennia. We didn’t really experience its adverse effects until recently. The country isn’t really one of the high emitting groups. Therefore it really was not a concern.

Now the calamities do happen and things needed to be implemented. It may be too late, lives have been lost. Trauma has been made. We try to solve the problem but it would need a couple of years to be more prepared. Before that time we need to bend and breach for our survival. All because we didn’t try to foresee it happening and didn't act or plan before it happened.

Submitted by Sarah Abigail Cruz on

Global warming. Green house effect. Drastic climate change. Rising sea levels. Floods. Land Slides. Same old story. Everyone is aware of it. It’s one of the most tackled global issues that everyone is aware of. But no matter how much they raise awareness regarding the ongoing global crisis, very little effort has been made, especially in our country. Yes, there are numerous pro-nature campaigns, plans, projects that are being promoted by the government and non-profit organizations across the country, but why is it I’m seeing more and more grey pavements and shiny tall buildings and less green around us?
The answer: Discipline. Discipline is what majority of our country lacks and it all starts with the government. Our government lacks discipline. Mass majority of the politician that we elected who are all expected to set a good example just can’t stop playing dirty. How can all this plans and projects come to fruition when all this politicians just can’t practice discipline at all? How do they expect most of us to do what is right when they seem to have a hard time doing it?
Our environment and surroundings is a spitting image of our government’s current situation and sadly things are not turning well. All this plans of goodwill and going green will only take place when and if our government will pull their act together and as soon as that happens, everything will fall into place effortlessly. Going green will be no hard feat at all.

Submitted by Andrea Beatrize M. Santos on

Global warming and climate change are alarming issues worldwide. Due to this, the current sea level is higher than it usually was. The ice caps in the Polar Regions are melting which had huge effects to the living creatures that inhabit that place. The typhoons in the Pacific are getting stronger. There are droughts and the weather is getting unpredictable.

In the Philippines, Filipinos are already used to being devastated by typhoons. That is why they are not physically or emotionally distressed by it. Since the Philippines is a third world country in its developing stage and Filipinos rely on aquaculture and agriculture, they are greatly affected in economic terms. But because the typhoons are getting stronger, the effects on them are larger. I believe that we, Filipinos, could easily adapt to this climate change if we stop being stubborn and do something about it.

Climate change cannot be stopped. It is already the effect of what humanity caused. It is the way of nature in adjusting to over pollution. To survive this crisis, the only thing we could do is to adapt. We should be ready on what possible things that will happen.

The Philippines is not included in the top list of major contributors to global warming and climate change but Filipinos are experiencing great impacts of disasters. Floods and landslides happen in many cities and provinces yet it is partially our own fault. Landslides happen because of deforestation. Floods happen because of the irresponsible disposing of garbage on the streets. I believe that Filipinos can cope up with climate change if everyone will be willing to take part on preventing the bad effects. It is not a one-man effort. We, Filipinos, should not blame the government for it.

I am very glad to know that the government is doing something about the effects of climate change. I agree that they should lead the Filipino people to the awareness about the climate change. There should be more projects on how flash floods and other disasters could be avoided if possible.

Mother Nature is a fearful opponent but Filipinos cannot be shaken that easily by climate change. Strong typhoons and other weather disturbances have been hitting the country more than once a year yet they can still keep a huge smile in their faces. Filipinos can adapt easily to the environment they have.

Submitted by Benjamin Moses Diño II on

We've already experienced severe hits from climate change. We are held responsible for what is happening. Yet, people are still indifferent about this. Some might realize this, but there's no real resolve in them.

Our dependence in crude oil generates GHGs, which is widely known to be a big cause of climate change. And we are slowly consuming our trees that counters GHGs.

If Filipinos don't realize this, I fear we wont go very far in finding a solution to our problem in climate change.

Submitted by Arnold Junior Andaya on

After visiting the link – (Filipinos, How are you adapting to climate change? You ask, we answer)
I would like to ask: Is the climate change problem “just a little discomforting?” Does it “make us just a little bit apprehensive about our future?” Should we “lessen our anxiety about this phenomenon?” Should not we face and deal this phenomenon anxiety with all our might, force, power, and strength? Should not we (all individuals on earth) dread the natural calamities to follow Ketsana, Parma, Washi, and Bopha? The Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review (CPEIR), a study undertaken by the World Bank (as requested by the Philippine government), cites a report by Dasgupta et al. in 2009 listing “the cities of San Jose, Manila, Roxas, and Cotabato among the top 10 most vulnerable cities in the East Asia and Pacific Region to sea-level rise.” San Jose and Manila are in Luzon. Roxas City is in Visayas. Cotabato is in Mindanao. Is it too much to say, the whole PHILIPPINES is in danger of being submerged in water due to sea-level rise? Quoted in Ma. Glenda Wui’s module, Biological Adaptation: “New adaptations must be developed if effective relationships with altered habitational conditions are to be maintained (Cohen 1987, 140).” and “The closer the adaptation to the environment, the greater the chances of survival” (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2002). Having these two in mind, can we ask our government for achievements or accomplishments concerning the several measures recommended by the World Bank study:
• How does it finance and execute the strengthened framework plans for climate change?
• Are leadership and accountability enhanced through monitoring, evaluation, and review of climate change policies and activities?
• Is capacity built? Is change managed?
Aren’t those too technical? Can’t all of those adaptive measures be translated into a language understood by everyone: male and female, young and old, rich and poor, educated and illiterate? Can’t we discuss those with more conviction, dedication, and passion? Can’t we promote those on television like a Star Cinema’s Kim Chiu film? I believe, a simple yet effective campaign is relevant for greater chances of survival.

Submitted by Sindhumati Mijares on

In addressing the climate change problem, not only the government should take action, but every Filipinos as well as all the stakeholders in the Philippines should partake in the needed action to lessen the effect of this phenomenon, this includes both local and foreign investors, expats and even tourists who visits the country, all of them should be well versed about our environmental campaign. Primarily, the government has the main role in pioneering and organizing a nationwide campaign, for ordinary citizen, there’s always a need for us to feel the upsurge and the affectivity of this campaign, not only in paper works and amended laws, which is always deemed as a non-functioning concept mostly to ordinary Filipinos who feels that legal matters are vaguely far away from their everyday lives.
Generally, the country’s laws particularly our environmental law should be culture specific in a sense that our law makers and government officials should consider the Filipino psychology in drafting laws and certain amendments for an effective adherence in the part of the Filipino people, policies should be easily grasp so the people can put them into practice, also one thing to ponder, Filipino people have issues when it comes to discipline and accepting guidance from authorities maybe because they distrust public officials or the government lost all its credibility and bearing due to corruption and various administrative issues, so normally the first phase of implementation will be the hardest because there will always be people who are used to the old ways that they do not want any reforms or changes even though their houses and neighbourhoods’ are being flooded from time to time, they will still violate laws and throw garbage anywhere and will blame the government for their misfortunes in time of great calamities, same with big corporations who keep on using red tapes and bribery to get away with their environmental responsibilities, it will be even harder for them to comply given that they are used to manipulate legal matters using their vast resources.
The problem of climate change in the Philippines is just one of the effects of the many unresolved internal conflicts in the Philippine society such as corruption, widespread poverty and social issues deeply rooted in our culture which until now remains unresolved, solving the problem of climate change should be continuous until the next 2 or 3 generation or even furthermore, it should penetrate every community, everyone from the government official to a simple grade schooler, everybody should take the necessary action and embody the needed discipline for the rest of our lives, along with this campaign is mobilizing every community, changing its ways and outlook on how important our environment is, revolutionizing our education system, resolving poverty issues and strictly reprimanding and penalizing government institutions from corrupting the public funds to safeguard every programs and projects which the people truly needs.
Lastly, I should say, that we have to keep our nationalism alive in our hearts, we have to love our country, we should be moved in every great leap forward and participate in every activity that will involve our nation. We should see ourselves as part of the progress and fulfil an active role to exercise our rights and responsibilities as a Filipino in its truest sense. Unity can lead us to progress.

Submitted by Paul Song on

Historically, Filipinos have been adapting to the rapid change for the past century with regards to the weather. Typhoons build up during summer, warm climate on the rainy season, unexplainable flooding , etc. Our Government already took necessary precautionary measures. Including but not limited to, NGO's on standby to provide relief aid, AFP, Philippine Red Cross, PNP to name a few. The government sector already started to increase the height of our elevation of our roads and built flood gates and effective drainage systems.

But, regardless of these measures that has already took place. Calamities are still affecting our community. Is it because of the lack of manpower? Resources or equipment? Despite of all the efforts our society exerts, we were not able to fully prevent or at the very least, be able to cruise through a storm.

Several focus group discussions and root cause analysis has been made with regard to the issue at hand. Reforestation was already a practice but illegal logging is still an issue. Philippines is not a major green house gas (GHG) emitter. But, considering the fact that the Philippines is an archipelago surrounded by bodies of water. We are vulnerable to the impending change and effects of climate change. As per the World Bank report. Sea levels have been rising by 15-20 cm from pre-industrial levels with the rate nearly doubling from that of the past century. Hypothetically speaking. We will be able to adapt from the changing climate if the People’s Survival Fund (PSF) are being utilized to its purpose, not somewhere else. A moment to ponder..

Submitted by Antonio Amoncio Jr. on

Good day!

Global Warming as we know it is inevitable. Climate change is already gaining on us. There's no one else to blame but all of us...well most of us. Prevention of Global Warming "may" be possible but the best thing that we could do now is to slow it down. The thing is, our government doesn't really prioritize the cleanliness of our environment. When I went to the United States, when you're caught by the cops throwing even a piece of plastic wrapper on the streets, you'll end up being reprimanded. Filipinos need to be disciplined the hard way. Most of the Filipinos are like children. They are very stubborn. In the US, citizens are "afraid" to disobey the law because the sanctions that are given once you break the law would make you think more than twice to break it. Here in the Philippines, people aren't afraid of cops because cops also break the law themselves and they could easily be bribed. Filipinos need to live in a more strict environment. As individuals, yes we may have done our jobs to be an essential part of the society but that is not enough. We ALL must move as one in order to save the humanity.

We aren't also the ones at fault. Our government is also to be blamed. The TAX we pay that should be used for the betterment of the society end up in the pockets of our corrupt leaders. I couldn't imagine how thick their faces are. Thinking that they money they use to build roofs over their heads, food to satisfy their cravings and hunger, fancy clothes to wear, luxurious cars that they don't even need came from hardworking Filipinos thinking that the TAX they pay would be used to make our country a better place to live in. I honestly despise our government. I'm disgusted on how they indulge themselves with money they didn't even work for.

If I'm given a chance to speak out loud to ALL the Filipinos, I would recommend a total government reboot wherein we are given a chance to elect leaders that are really meant to lead us all. No more campaigns to earn votes, no more fancy jingles and other ways of convincing others to vote them. There must be a monthly budget report to be shown to all of the Filipinos to see where our money is going, government officials MUST only receive the salaries they're supposed to receive. No more bonuses. No more PDAF. The reason why I'm focusing all my rants to the government is because they're capable of earning so much money that's enough to save our environment and to save those who were and will be affected by calamities. Yes we as ordinary people couldn't stop climate change but the government has the power to speak to the entire Filipino nation to inform us of what's to come if we continue with our current way of living. If Global Warming is already on its peak, we may be left extinct. Some of us may think that "hey what the heck, we won't be here to witness everything when it comes down". Don't forget about our future generations. They won't be able to enjoy what's yet to see.

I have read the WB report and it is said that there are departments that lack knowledge and staffs that are skilled on climate policy, financing and institutions.

It's actually great to hear that the government is trying to prepare us for climate change. The thing is, they could actually do more than what they're doing now. If they would put the money of the people in good use then everything else will go smoothly.

Submitted by Evangeline Marie Otero on

Upon reading the World Bank Report, it is alarming to learn how our country will be immensely impacted by global climate change. In the report, negative effects range from agricultural and fishing industry risks, lack of food supply, landslides, flooding, droughts, and may even impact tourism.

While it is true that the Aquino administration has taken these global climate changes to heart and has been persistent in forming organizations such as Climate Change Commission (CCC), Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change (CCCC) and People’s Survival Fund Board (PSFB) as well as involving various government sectors and local government units; there is still a glaring opportunity to effectively implement designed climate change action plans. This is mainly attributed to the general scopes of responsibilities assigned to these organizations and vague alignments that relate each organization’s task and accountability. Apart from these indistinct lines of interdepartmental relationships, there is also a lack in technology, from a monitoring and evaluation perspective, that will help put climate change action plans to fruition. Furthermore, there is an evident lack in skilled personnel who would be able to employ these plans.

In this light, it is also important to consider the government funding with respect to climate appropriation. Due to lack of standardization, there is an opportunity to identify and streamline government budgets to climate-specific projects, activities and plans. And since, we are already experiencing the impacts of global climate change; bulk of the budget allocations target projects in relation to flood control and management, et al. Thus, sacrificing the development of the skilled personnel who are needed to effectively execute and assess progress or gaps in the climate action plans that have been put forward.

In summary, I believe that though the country is in the right direction in terms of addressing and mitigating global climate change; however, the road to achieve monumental successes is still far ahead. We have only scratched the surface of this environmental concern. To achieve further wins in this climate battle, I am in definite agreement with the recommendations that have been presented by the World Bank. Additionally, from a micro-level perspective, I believe that general public awareness to our current situation would be able to help encourage each citizen to do their part in preventing climate change and mitigating its impacts. Education and awareness is key, not only can it promote sustainable living in every Filipino household; it can also bring about a higher level of consciousness in every Filipino. Thus, each citizen is empowered with the full understanding that this problem does not rely solely on the shoulders of our government. And, that every one of us, should be part of the solution.

References:
Getting a grip… on climate change in the Philippines. Retrieved from http://www.worldbank.org/content/dam/Worldbank/document/EAP/Philippines/OverviewCPEIR.pdf

Submitted by Maria Charisma Miranda on

Climate Change?

What we’re experiencing and happening to the Philippines is not merely in our country but all over the world. Earthquake, typhoons, floods, landslide, sinkholes and sea level rise are extreme events happening. Seasons changing from hot weather to cold weather vice versa, even its summer yet sometimes you experience rainfall. A little rain cause flood around Metro Manila. In provinces, if typhoon strike affected area would declare State of Calamity since infrastructure are broke down, crops and livelihood of the people are affected and damage. In news, if the weather forecast say a strong storm is coming we could feel the fears on what would this one bring to us like the previous Ondoy, Pedring, and Sendong etc. The good thing is people become aware and prepared.

It’s a good thing were taking part in the climate change issue. With the Climate Change Commission (CCC) goals and concept such as leading climate policy making and coordinating, monitoring and evaluation climate programs and action plans. But because of its wide area of responsibilities the CCC has not been able to divert enough resources to administer for the immediate action on climate change. According to the World Bank is that the CCC jointly responsible for several task with other agencies yet its effectiveness is limited by the lack of clear or formalized roles and relationships. And what is crucial is they might have all the methods or resources but its limited and theirs also limitation to each party. That’s why they have to clarify the relationship to ensure effective implementation.

One of the factors of climate change is the green gas emission. Although our country don’t have the biggest emission production yet we are participating to help. But is the Philippines ready to contribute to reduce global warming without affecting our goal to rise up in the industries and one of the developing country. If only greater effort is enforce in cutting down greenhouse gas emission especially in rich countries but cannot totally reduce it’s since their industries and economic growth will suffer. It’s hard to say because sometimes they are doing it in the name of development and prosperity but result in an opposite perspective that harm and affect Mother Nature.

Having enough knowledge and awareness we can address the issue of climate change. The need to participate would serve as a guide to understand the basic concepts and ideas, the cause and effect, relationships and human nature. And for the government, it’s all about leadership to develop a core capabilities to talk, to plan, to evaluate and strong implementation for a long term development.

Human intervention is never too late as long as we take part with it and help.

The WB exclusive report has given us a detailed and elaborate review and investigation on climate change in the Philippines and its exposure to the harsh environmental conditions that bring about major changes in all dimensions of society. And because of the extreme effects of climate change in the country, the review cited major threats on the country's environmental, social and structural growth. While governmental preventive and corrective actions are being taken such as the establishment of the Climate Change Commission and the National Climate Change Action Plan to deal with the present crisis, the review presents weaknesses in the implementation of procedures to effectively carry out the measures. The review also included pillars or recommendations as to how the Philippines can go about a successful implementation of the climate change adaptation and how social learning can bring a huge impact on the society's readiness for change.

Unfortunately, as much as social awareness and learning are promoted to Filipinos regarding climate change, the core of the problem is not cognitive but internal. Filipinos fail in terms of discipline. While naturally, the water level rises, the flooding in many areas of the country are mostly caused by human disposals. This can be perfectly attributed to unconstraint attitudes of the citizens concerning their laws. Also, the enforcement of the laws on care for the environment is weak. With these perpetual habits, nature will eventually take its toll. As I quote Ma.Glenda Wui in her book, Foundations of Behavioural Science 2003, she says that,
"Nature, and the imperatives of its laws, will be our most powerful teacher as we learn our way to a new society. "

Nature's vengeance can instil so much trauma, pain and sufferings for those who will be greatly affected. But no matter how painful, it will pave a way for change. A new society.
Constructively, when we talk about a new society, it does not mean that we destroy everything that is existing but rather we move forward into making it sustainable for all of us. As Filipinos experience growth in the many dimensions of society and as we pursue quality of life, we neglect to consider the values attached to it. Our self-seeking, short-sighted intentions to promote good living causes a humungous strain on our environment. The need to exhibit primary values such as justice, security and love for our resources are vital collective characteristics of a successful act of sustaining and preserving our environment. Practically speaking, we should think twice before throwing pieces of candy wrappers on the street, before we burn our garbage, before we cut trees, before we buy products in the grocery, before we build businesses, and before we make laws of our land. We should take an active part in adapting and sustaining our environment.

Submitted by Ma. Dominique Hernandez on

It is known that the Philippines, is vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Typhoons and landslides are the common climate-related threats that the country faces every year. To be honest, this is the first time I have heard of the Climate Change Commission (CCC) and I am glad that the government already took the initiative to establish this organization. However, one major concern here is that even if, let’s say the government already have had plans and budget for the policies or programs for these natural disaster threats, how well do we, the citizens adhere to this policies and programs? After all, the people are to blame why we are experiencing all these negative effects of climate change and not the government.

As an ordinary citizen, we need discipline and help each other to change the way we treat our environment. We have to help the government in implementing the rules on this matter of climate change. An example of this is to teach ourselves to throw our garbage in the right places and help preserve our natural resources. We can start by doing these simple things which will greatly help our surroundings.

Submitted by Miriam Park on

How We Adapt to Climate Change
We, the people of the world are the cause of global warming that produced climate change all over the world. We shouldn’t solely blame the government for all the tragedies we experience like heavy floods, landslides, earthquakes, and many more. These tragedies that occurred in our own country should make us reevaluate our own environment and find solutions.
But what are we, Filipinos doing to adapt to climate change?
I know that some Filipinos are stubborn and lack discipline that even some doesn’t follow simple signs as to where he should throw garbage. No, I am not saying this to insult fellow Filipinos but to open your eyes that even in this simple way, we can lessen the effect of climate change in our own country. .
Filipino citizens together with the government, factories, corporations, and mining community should join forces in saving Mother Nature. Granted, the government is doing a lot more effective campaigns since typhoon ‘ONDOY ‘regarding climate change. But, is it enough? We, as a normal citizen or even a citizen, who owns big corporation must also do his part on what the government has implemented for it to be fully efficient and maximized. We must also aware the people of the larger risk of climate change if we just neglect it now.
Reference: http://www.worldbank.org/content/dam/Worldbank/document/EAP/Philippines/OverviewCPEIR.pdf

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