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Submitted by Enrico Fernando on

First of all, this is the first time I've heard about these programs (including the 1b peso budget) existing in the government. People here are more concerned about current issues concerning the government, civil unrest, disasters and unfortunately celebrities. Media hasn’t done anything to educate the public either. It seems that climate change is a bit boring for their viewers and frankly do not get the rating they want. After all, ratings mean money in their pocket. So I guess that’s one problem on my list concerning this program. People need to be educated. They need to know (and while at it, believe) the details that concern climate change. They need to know why typhoons are getting stronger, why their house is now susceptible to flooding and why it suddenly gets pretty hot right after the monsoons. Once they know (and believe, don’t forget believe) they just might be interested enough so that the government will be more focused and vigilant on climate change.

Let’s now go to the People Survival Fund. It does sound pretty amazing being worth 1 billion pesos but try mentioning it now to a citizen and you’ll find that 9/10 maybe even 10/10 will find it insulting. With the issues now about PDAF and NGOs, how can we trust that this fund will not get lost in paperwork and go straight to the pocket of officials? This fund must be carefully allocated to deserving projects. It doesn't have to be big, but be effective enough to start awareness and change. And again, some of it have to go to educating the public.

Development doesn't have to stop. On the contrary, it is actually a good place to put some of those funds. Public transport is a nightmare in the Philippines. It’s always crowded, hot and there’s always a slight chance you get pick-pocketed. No wonder Filipinos now are buying more cars than before. And cars are a huge contributor to GHG emissions. If we at least try to develop public transport, then perhaps people will start to entertain the idea of using public transport therefore decreasing the amount of automobiles on the road and lower GHG emissions.

People need to care. The public need to know how dire our situation is. Being an archipelago, we are most susceptible and vulnerable to tropical storms and typhoons. And we need to care more about the environment. It’s not about dropping everything you have going in your life right now and go fight for the cause but simply doing what you can to prevent further damage is a must. The simple way of throwing trash on bins or keeping them in your pocket when none is around can have a huge effect on statistics if everyone is religiously doing it. Conserving energy can also mean that less electricity is needed to be produced decreasing the amount of fuel needed to be burned every day.