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


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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, 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 Ask now!

Image courtesy of audiovisualjunkie through a Creative Commons license

Allison Mair Ignacio
October 01, 2013

Having read the World Bank report, it didn’t surprise me that climate change has been a big factor in the disasters (typhoons, floods, landslides) that have been affecting the Philippines. It is good that the government has been taking steps in trying to prevent the negative effects of climate change, but, as stated in the article, it lacks the funds and the manpower to be as effective as it is proposed to be.
As budget is scarce, I can see why manpower is also an issue. I think that aside from managing these things, the government should also look into promoting public knowledge about climate change. The only way to invite more individuals into working in this type of sector is to inform the public and instill in people a sense of importance regarding their environment and their motherland.
Already we are experiencing the negative effects of this phenomenon, and individuals are taking action in disasters and floods in order to save lives. But this is not enough. We need to remedy this problem by finding the root of the problem and putting a stop to it.

Daisy G. Pindang
October 01, 2013

It is sad to know that the Philippines is never spared of all kinds of fortuitous events or should I say natural calamities. At first, I wanted to blame the people for being so careless in terms of garbage disposal especially in the crowded areas in Metro Manila. Way back then and up until now, I honestly do not like to go to Manila (since I am not a city type girl) because I hate to see garbage in every corner of the street and I hate to experience heavy downpour of rain yet no proper drainage is good enough to let the water flow. In fairness to the clean districts though, they did good!. But what about the rest of the area? The government should impose a strict rule on garbage disposal and should keep on educating people about it and remind them of the beauty it would give us had we known proper garbage disposal. My first step in Manila last May was a disaster. I left the house noon time and came back by 7 pm but sad to say I was stocked in the corner of the street looking for a roof to keep myself from being wet. What's worse was I could not bare walking in the street with a knee high water. Imagine the dirt and microbes within this knee high water! And aside from that, there's this unfortunate people who lives beside the street and pees everywhere! It was like I wanted to cry because I could not get to my best friend's house so easily and so quickly. Another thing the government must see is the illegal mining in some areas of the Philippines that causes landslides. Had the government was so strict on the paper works of issuing the right permit to the mining moguls there should not be a landslide. Climate change is not only of a person or two. Cutting trees is also very rampant. But I am happy to share that in my local community people are now aware of the result of cutting even a single trunk of tree. Now that's being responsible, isn't it? Very often we see news on national TV of a depression coming to our PAR. We have not yet recovered from previous disaster yet another one is yet to come.
An unending lesson we have to carry for the rest of our lives. I should say that the government should focus on the implementation of rules that would help deter yet another event that would cost lives of the people in the society and people must be very cooperative so that we can have a nation that is livable for the next generation to come.

Rosendy B. Palattao
October 01, 2013

Climate Change is inevitable especially in today’s age, yet we can reduce its massive threat to extinction of species and humanities. Ideally, it was said on this article that one of the great causes of Climate Change is the emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. This is identified as the human-induced alteration of the natural world. The use of oil crude as energy highly aggravates this phenomena that affects everyone living on earth.
Natural disasters are sometimes cause of failure of preparation of the communities or even an individual, insufficient knowledge of weather forecast or alert, instruments used to forecast weather condition and individual awareness and understanding about this destructive occurrences.
We can start with what we have. Our main problem in the Philippines is not the flood, per sae, but as a whole is the Climate Change. This is just an effect of what really is the big deal.
In the Philippines alone, I observed that few numbers of places utilizes natural resource-converting energy. This doesn’t need an emission of harm gasses that triggers Climate Change. We have one in Bangui, Ilocos Norte which is the Wind Mill Farm that enables to sustain electricity in the upper region. Other natural-generated energies or what we call Renewable energies are solar energy, Hydro-electric energy, geothermal energy and wind energy. What I think, this is the best projects our government can start implementing since we cannot do anything with what we call “Natural Changes” in our ecosystem.
The best place to start a project is on what we already have and these are renewable resources that are pretty much available especially on our nation. Wise utilization of funds and our resources deals more directly to what we really need in our society. May I ask if our government has thought of such thing to effectively provide the cause of emitting harmful gasses?

Cynthal Ampoyos
October 03, 2013

“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.

Lara Santillan
October 03, 2013

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:… -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.

James Harvey Maceda
October 02, 2013

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!

Enrico Fernando
October 01, 2013

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.

Rochelle Sibal
October 01, 2013

Filipinos can manage
How we Filipinos are adapting to climate change? Well I can say that Filipinos are now a days used to flooding especially in the metro area. Even if it's just a normal rain that last for a couple of minutes the streets will be flooded that easily. People are so used to flood that they will listen to weather and traffic reports every time it rains and house buyers always ask if the area is flood free so flood and calamities is part of every Filipinos lives.
Knowing the government is allotting funds for calamities and for adaptation programs and projects, makes you wonder if it's really be going in that said projects, so even though the government is doing something or not we as a human being should be responsible and get involved in making mother earth last longer, for we can no longer stop the climate change cause the damage has been done the only thing that we can do is to lessen the damage by discipline , the simple proper garbage disposal, planting seedlings every time a tree is cut down. We cannot blame anyone even the government for this we should act and contribute individually in possible way we can.

October 01, 2013

In a tropical country like the ‘Philippines’ indeed climate change is doubtlessly imminent. The mere fact that we should be by now used to such fast weather changing events as long-term or legal residents in this country, yet the impact unfortunately is consistently unpredictable.
Residing in Marikina brought me to a so much more challenging encounter to daily humungous traffic and consistent flooding due to garbage’s clogging the drainages in the city. I wonder why it still occurs despite the maintenance of the city’s cleanliness and its strict prohibition of proper waste management.
The filthy river of Marikina is noticeably containing too much junks and are surely did not originate in the city alone. I staunchly believed that the weather condition is totally uncontrollable but the major predicament is the populations ‘discipline’. People throw their trashes everywhere, too much illegal logging, and irresponsiveness of our own safety. I understand that there are numbers of informal settlers. It made me felt so frustrated watching news about relocation to ensure their safety, and it’s quite saddening that majority of them preferred to stay in such dangerous places rather than migrating in a new unfamiliar yet a safer shelter for them. Too much complain about the accessibility and stuffs, well I will be surely shock-to-death if the government will prioritize to put them in the middle of the business district. It’s like this; prior on planning to teach the world how to dance, you yourself need to ensure your dancing capability first. Bottom line is, we all play a huge role in this world.
If it’s only possible to have done no more on illegal logging, flooding will positively be eliminated. If there are no more informal settlers, the government will no longer have to spend too much for temporary relief goods, less death threats, and a lesser alarming tragedies. If only people all over the Philippines take ownership of their social responsibilities, get ourselves familiarize with the do’s and don’ts and embrace the reality that we are all bound to certain limitations, then this country will be a better place to live in the entire universe!
As per the ‘World Bank’s report’, the CCA (Climate Change Act) requires technical and financial assistance to LGU (Local Government Unit) to perform a local change action plans and unfortunately the needed support is inadequate. Also, one of the major problem as reiterated in the report the appointed department have; insufficient number of knowledgeable and skilled staff‘s, lack of management system, tools are too complex to use and more… Our country seemed to be facing such arduous challenge. Climate change is something that we can’t change, but we can adjust to ensure our safety on the upcoming implication of climate change.

Danilo Toquero Tierra
October 01, 2013

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?

marissa m. andal-zamora
October 01, 2013

A priority for the Aquino government
I remember when PNoy became president, this was one of his priorities. Hence, the evolution and updating of Pag-Asa and other government agencies that was involved with it.
They were really giving it the attention it needed.
We did see the effect of it but it was in its preliminaries
still and other major issues came to fore.
We as a country do have a lot of problems to address but we need to see more the care & follow thru not just from the government but from the whole nation as well.
It cannot be handled just by our government especially now that it's literally crumbling before our eyes.
We need to work hand in hand and have the private sector have a say on the solutions we can do.
There is a need for a more centralized and concentrated effort for climate change governance.
A board that is identifiable and known that can pass on policies and rules on every aspect of climate change.
The DILG is the action guy but we need a think tank go-to group that will pull it all together and DILG can implement it to the grass roots.
A guide, a system, a blueprint ...that is jn place and everyone can follow for every calamity or disaster that we encounter.
Then i'll be more confident that we will manage as a country.
As for me, i just feel that i am groping with the issue of climate change, a little bit misguided still. Not knowing where it starts & ends.
Yes, we stop using plastics, we avoid littering, we sort the garbage etc etc
What more?
it's bits and pieces here & there. Yes, we do need TRUE guidance on what to do wholistically.

Danilo Toquero Tierra
October 01, 2013

Climate Change : Result of Human's Activity
Upon reading the WB Report in relation to the Climate Change, and the preparedness of the Filipino people confronting this issue of the day, queries ad concerns run into my mind.
The Philippines have been witnessed to the ill effects of the climate change phenomenon. I witness the massive destruction brought by the typhoon "ONDOY" in September of 2009 in Marikina City where am residing. Millions of pesos accounted for the damage to properties and lives of the people. Then year in follows the torrential rains brought by the "HABAGAT'S", that really affected not only our city but various places of the country, resulting to loss of lives and properties.
The weather systems have indeed shifted from the normal into the extremes. Why is so? Human activities I think were to be accounted to the aggravation of the situations. Humans by nature has insatiable desire for the pursuit of achievements and greatness, exploiting all natural resource, thus creating domino effects.
The climate change phenomena is not the only concern of the Philippines but of the global community. Countries of the world must and should think and act accordingly with nature. Nature is speaking to humankind, and it was manifesting through the shifting conditions of the weather system from the normal into he extremes.
I believe that nature is doing a massive purging to restore balance of nature. It's for human to adapt to the current cycle of change and to really understand the language of nature for humans to co-exist with it.
(1) “Getting A Grip on Climate Change in the Philippines: A World Bank Report”. Retrieved September 30, 2013 from

Glenn Richard Oracion
October 02, 2013

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?

Vincent Paul Villacrusis
October 02, 2013

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.

Pamela Anne Robles
October 02, 2013

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.

Vincent Paul Villacrusis
October 02, 2013

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.

Neressa P. Biton
October 03, 2013

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?

Neressa P. Biton
October 02, 2013

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.

Joanna Marie R. Magsakay
October 03, 2013

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.

Neressa P. Biton
October 02, 2013

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.

Deniel Sean V. Macapal
October 02, 2013

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.

Neriza Almirol
October 02, 2013

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.

Sylvia Bermejo Austria
October 04, 2013

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.

October 04, 2013

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:…

Elijah Nazarea
October 02, 2013

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.

October 02, 2013

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.
The World Bank. (n.d.). Getting a Grip…on Climate Change in the Philippines. Retrieved on October 2, 2013 from….
NSO Statistical News: NCR in Figures. Retrieved on October 2, 2013 from

Merida T.Daguman
October 02, 2013

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?…

Plinky Limpingco
October 02, 2013

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.

Christian Bernard Alvero
October 02, 2013

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.

Jacinto R. Valila, Jr.
October 02, 2013

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.

Feliza Urrutia
October 03, 2013

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.

Monica Cassandra Capala
October 03, 2013

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.

October 04, 2013

After reading the World Bank report, I felt glad that the Philippine government is addressing the problems related to climate change. However, what they are doing is still not enough. Climate change-related calamities such as floods and landslides are still happening in the country and the number of deaths and economic losses are rising. According to the report, budget for PAPs (Programs, Activities, and Projects) and the public's awareness is not sufficient. I think the government should focus first on programs which aim to inform the public about climate change, its negative effects, and what they can do in order to lessen these effects. By knowing the impact of climate change on their lives, the people will realize the importance of having to protect Mother Earth. But the fight against climate change is not only the government's but also ours.
As Filipinos and inhabitants of Earth, it is our responsibility to take care of our environment. Having initiative, sensitivity, and discipline will greatly help in the rehabilitation of our planet. Through acting together and helping each other, I believe that we and our planet still have a chance of creating a better world to live in.

Beatrice Miranda G Reyno
October 09, 2013

I am adapting to climate change by lessening my carbon footprint and by recycling as much as possible. Climate change creates stronger typhoons that create bigger floods most especially here in the Metro. I do my part by throwing garbage to proper bins to lessen the blockages in our drainage.
I am glad that the government through the CCC has taken some concrete steps towards advancing the immediate policies to address Climate Change. And I agree with the 3 recommendations written above. It is hard to push through your agenda, if there is not much public clamor as well. I suggest building capacity online, through campaigns that attract Filipinos most especially the younger ones to forward the cause. As we have seen through the Million People March, the government responds to massive participation of its citizens. I am also glad that your commission has teamed up with and several institutions in building Project Agos,a revolutionary idea that can save many many lives.

gabrielle yquin
October 04, 2013

Climate change in the Philippines can be felt by now. Climate-related hazards include continuous typhoons and flooding, occasional earthquakes, sea level rise and landslides due to heavy rains. By God's grace, we've not yet experienced such calamities in our location. Though some parts in Laguna has extremely damaged livelihoods and homes, they still need to continue their lives for their children's future.
The 2009 Climate Change Act is a big help for the projects, climate reform agendas and achieving the objectives and activities for the National Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP). Whenever there is news about calamities in the Philippines, you can see that Filipinos still smile and laugh despite of the disastrous calamity they have experienced. It is because some Filipinos are unaware of the gravity of the climate change. We Filipinos must act as early as possible to prevent the impact of climate change to arise in the country. Budget is one of the main hindrances to meet the objectives of NCCAP. The administration must act now and distribute equally the provision of the needs of every sector related to NCCAP.
For me, society gives a big contribution for the climate change and unfortunately most people are unaware that their everyday activities are resulting to increase the gravity of the climate change in their country. The administration must give the public awareness about climate change. And as our administration and the Filipino people act as one, it is not impossible to achieve a better future for the next generations to come. ONE GOAL FOR A BETTER FUTURE! :-)
Crepin, Christophe. 2013. Getting a grip on climate change in the Philippines : executive report. Washington DC ; World Bank.…

Hubert Abao
October 04, 2013

World Bank Report on Getting a Grip on Climate Change in the Philippines
Contributing to the foundation and ensuring the future for a low-carbon, climate resilient society through the Philippine Climate Public Expenditure and Institutional Review
Public Expenditure and Institutional Review
The document aims to consolidate the strategic direction of the National Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP). The 2009 Climate Change Act of 2009 called for the formulation of a National Framework on Climate Change (NFCC), which defines the overall parameters for developing the NCCAP. Hence, the NCCAP is the lead policy document guiding the climate agenda at all levels of government from 2011-2028.
As far as I know, there is already an existing document, the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the Kyoto Protocol (KP) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) which addresses greenhouse gas emission reductions. The KP is a legally binding instrument that strengthens the UNFCCC. As far as I know, the CDM is one of the three market-based flexibility mechanisms under the KP. In fact in the Philippines, the DENR is the designated national authority (DNA) of the CDM.
My question is: How does this document relate to the CDM as far as addressing the climate change issues in the Philippines? This document does not explain its relation and relevance to the CDM.

kenneth Sevlla
October 03, 2013

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”.

Junelyn Frando
October 03, 2013

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?
"Adapting to climate change"
Retrieved on October 3, 2013 from…

John Christian Carpio
October 07, 2013

I think we are not adapting to climate change. We still see places destroyed by floods these days. Our government just rescued faster and that's all. Floods still destroy properties and harm lives. And I don't see this problem being solved anytime sooner.

Pauline Garsain
October 06, 2013

Reading the report of World Bank entitled “Getting a grip on the climate change of the Philippines.” It was impressive that today’s administration has made an act, The 2009 Climate Change Act, and it was set for NFSCC which will later then be an overall parameters for developing the NCCAP. The government has still a lot of problems and issues to fix but it was good that they have faced this thing. Some people may not see it as important like the other problems of the government. But, if we are going to look deeper and reason out, this should be the priority of our government. With this act as it was enumerated in the report it will help lessen poverty. If this will really be applied and followed by the leaders surely, we will be able to lessen the problems with regards to typhoons and any other calamities. If calamities will be lessened the progress of our country will just arise. More jobs, infrastructures, investors, and works will be available to the business sector of the Philippines.

Maria Cecilia Sevilla
October 06, 2013

Relative to the World Bank Report entitled Getting a Grip on Climate Change in the Philippines and with its 3 major areas of recommendation in the back of my mind, I have also read that “the Philippines was ranked 18th in KPMG’s 2013 Change Readiness Index (CRI). Change readiness relates to the capability of a country’s agents – its government, private and public enterprises, people and wider civil society – to anticipate, prepare for, manage, and respond to a wide range of change drivers, proactively cultivate the resulting opportunities, and mitigate any potential negative impacts. The 2013 Change Readiness Index ranked 90 countries, measuring them across 26 components to compare capabilities in the areas of enterprise (business environment), government, and people and civil society (social and human capital).”¹
However, change includes negative shocks like natural disasters resulting from climate change. Notwithstanding the KPMG study above, I cannot but be concerned that except for maybe a few of its civil society, the input that KPMG got from the Philippine government, business environment, and the majority of its people as far as reacting and adapting to climate change is more rhetoric rather than concrete actions, more of wanting rather than doing. Recent events in the Philippines portray a government rife in corruption, a business sector incessant in its pursuit of more profit to the detriment of its human capital, and the majority of its populace more focused on having 3 meals on the table. Issues such as adapting to climate change would be the least in each sector’s concerns. Nor would the World Bank’s recommendations for that matter.
Nevertheless, I am convinced that the individual shapes the society, whether it be the government, the business sector or civil society. If I, as an individual Filipino, resolve to act rather than just wish, I can immediately implement the Environment’s 3Rs of REDUCE-REUSE-RECYLE. I can start from my home and family and progressing farther to my friends, community, province and ultimately my entire beloved country the Philippines.

Vida Brucelas
October 09, 2013

It was mentioned that our country is just a minor contributor to climate change; unfortunately our country is one of the most affected. We should not despair; it does not mean we cannot do anything about this anymore and just be passive about this. As a developing country, what we can do is avoid the path that developed countries, some are major contributors to climate change have done, and instead as we develop we should still consider the effects it will have to the environment, knowing now that as predicted our contribution to climate change will increase.
Our government should be more pro-active and take preventive measures in climate change, instead of just preparing for natural disasters intensified by climate change. Examples of these are investing in alternative energy, support private sectors that are already in environment friendly industries and for citizens in our daily lives to really cooperate and participate in the Reuse, Reduce, Recycle and Repair movement. Implementation of the law has always been our problem as a country and it does not help that we lack self-discipline as citizens too. But, if we really want to provide for the future generations, our families, which Filipinos our known for, assuring them of a healthy planet is one of the best we can provide them. We just have to do our part on this planet, no matter how little we may think it is.

Carlos Bryan Nolido
October 04, 2013

A wake up call for Environmental Awareness
The World Bank article about Climate Change clearly highlights the ideas and challenges the society might face during this phenomena. The general effect of this let’s say in The Philippines is economically impacting especially in the tourism and trading industry. Imagine if 100 farmers are unable to harvest rice because the farm is flooded then this problem might affect the supply of rice in the entire nation, but what if there are more than 100 farmers out there who are affected by this? High demand – low supply = PRICE INCREASE. The result is = RALLY :-)
How are we adapting from Climate Change? Is this really an issue that is popularly known? or an issue that’s been rejected by many?
Let me start from myself, how I am adapting from climate change. I make sure that I am healthy, physically fit and environmentally friendly because there’s no way I can stop this situation so I’d rather prevent this from giving me negative impacts.
How am I protecting myself with regard to climate change? first is I have stored medicines inside my travelling bag and in times of sickness or even a simple headache I have something to take for prevention, then I have a bottled water all the time for rehydration lastly I have an umbrella so I can be protected from the heat of the sun and also to avoid heat stroke. This is how am I protecting myself from climate change.
With regard to the society I believe that we have different moves and practices as to how can we adapt to climate change. To be honest I don’t think people notice it, I think Filipinos are more concern about earning money for their families rather than dwelling on situations like climate change as what I’ve noticed so, in short PEOPLE DON’T CARE and this is the main reason why the Climate Change Commission of the Philippines is currently running it’s campaign for awareness. Prevention is better than cure that’s why they want us to be more conscious about climate change because if we get enough knowledge then it’s easier for us to adapt to any kinds of climate related hazards.
People are violent against Mother Nature. Illegal logging, oil Spills from factories that kills sea creatures and coral reefs, littering and many more. We’re just concerned about “what can we get” but we’re not aware of what would be the “effect in general” So, I admit during typhoons like the recent one, while I’m watching the news I can’t help but to blame the people who gets affected by flood and landslides all over the country. Many of them chose to stay even if the government is already advising them to vacate the place, but they opted to stay. The government on the other hand may do projects about this, but no matter how many projects are being implemented, no matter how big the budget is if there is no cooperation and awareness from people then I don’t think it’s possible for us to make a difference.
Like an autumn leaf that is dancing while falling to the ground reminds me that there’s no way we can stop “fall” from coming. If we don’t take responsibility and change our habits then nothing is going to be left for the upcoming generations.
Cooperation and awareness is the key to solve this.

Miriam Park
October 04, 2013

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.

Alyssa Marie Quicoy
October 03, 2013

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.

Geffrey Cena
October 06, 2013

For a majority of Filipinos, especially those who are living in slum areas don’t even care or maybe worst, that is they don’t even know what climate change is all about. The government should strengthen its programs in educating the people on how to take care of his or her environment and how to preserve its natural resources.
I agree with the blogger of this site, Ms. Sering in saying that climate change is definitely upon us. Every Filipino should not be relying solely with the government in preserving the environment but also each one should possess the right discipline in taking care of its natural resources.
Adaptation to climate change through technological solutions such as coastal defences or management and changes in consumption habits are also needed in order to adapt to the impacts of climate change.
Some non-government organizations (NGO’s) such as the Science of Identity Foundation conduct different seminars to help the government educate its people.

Lourdes Babagay
October 03, 2013

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.

Andrew Francisco
October 03, 2013

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.

Catherine Catanjal
October 05, 2013

A small change can make a big difference..
It is true that we are facing the greatest challenges on the effect of these environmental changes. The Philippines alone had experienced so many typhoons, flood, earthquakes and even landslides, wherein, this greatly affects the economy of the country, the livelihood of the people and even our morale. It is very interesting to know that the Philippine government is now taking the initiative to address the barriers on effective implementation of the climate change agenda. Based on the report provided by the World bank, there are so many things which needs to be addressed. From the financing part, having a knowledgeable staff or committee and raising public awareness of Climate change. Shouldn't we start in raising public awareness? Like educating the people about the cause and effect of the climate change, what the agenda is and how an individual can contribute to the success of this plan? I believe that if everyone is educated and cooperates to this agenda, though it may seem a little change but will still make a difference.
I just have one doubt about the effectiveness of this agenda, how do you think the Filipino's will buy-in the idea of this plan, given that we know that the government is corrupt? How do we know that the funds which will be allocated for this project will really be used for its sole purpose?

Ma. Dominique Hernandez
October 04, 2013

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.