There is a blue sky behind climate change thick clouds.
Very recently, the government of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. geared up, following up on his pledge on July 25 during his first State of the Nation Address, and scaled up its response to cushion the impact of global warming.
Malacanang said that climate change, which refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns, and its effects are major issues the 64-year-old President Marcos will address throughout his six-year term ending in June 2028.
Simply put, “climate change” means a change of climate attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.
Malacanang said proof of the government’s commitment is the allocation of P453 billion for climate change adaptation and mitigation programs in the 2023 National Expenditure Program.
In his letter to the House of Representatives before it started deliberations on the proposed national budget, the President said the country needed to “increase capacity building for natural disaster resiliency” and “disaster-proof planning of our communities.”
Also recently the Philippines and Qatar agreed to bolster their partnership for climate change mitigation, with both sides agreeing to focus cooperation on knowledge and technology sharing to minimize the consequences of the global environmental issue.
The Philippine side, as a state party to the UNFCCC (UN Framework Convention on Climate Change), Kyoto Protocol, and Paris Agreement renewed its commitment to fulfill its Nationally Determined Contribution to reduce by 75 percent the country’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Foreign Undersecretary Ma. Theresa Lazaro and Qatar Secretary General Ahmed Hassen Al Hammadi reviewed this month the progress of the two countries’ bilateral relations, including cooperation in the areas of culture, tourism, education, sports, trade, investment, and the economy.
It is heartening to note that both sides also discussed opportunities and ways to enhance and expand partnerships, as well as exchange views on climate change mitigation and regional and international issues.
During his first State of the Nation Address, President Marcos Jr. outlined his plan to increase the country’s use of renewables as part of the country’s climate agenda.
Although one of the top gas exporting countries in the Middle East, Qatar had repeatedly affirmed its commitment to support the transition to low-carbon energy and backed global efforts to assist countries most vulnerable to climate change.
The Joint Consultation Meeting. formalized with the signing of a 2019 memorandum of understanding, will serve as the primary dialogue mechanism with Qatar at the vice-ministerial level.
The Qatar Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted the inaugural meeting in Doha, with the second expected to be held in Manila next year.
Now we look up and see a sign of hope in an otherwise negative situation.