Philippines urges developed nations, int'l orgs to unlock climate financing to developing nations
KUMAMOTO CITY, Japan -- Asia and Pacific nations should forge stronger partnerships to address the impacts of changing climate by making available and accessible climate financing to developing countries that bear the brunt of global warming, the Philippines’ top climate official said on Sunday.
Delivering a high-level statement during the 4th Asia-Pacific Water Summit here, Climate Change Commission Secretary Robert E.A. Borje said: “Our challenge and responsibility then is to formulate and implement water development strategies and trajectories in the era of climate change – up to the last mile, up to the last person.”
“To this end, we need climate financing. Make it more accessible and available. Unlock it for the developing world.”
“This is not a plea for handouts, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen. This is an urgent call for responsible partnership. We want to contribute more but we in the developing world need to help ourselves first.”
The core of climate change adaptation and mitigation is climate justice, Secretary Borje emphasized, underscoring that to the least responsible for climate change, with the least resources and the most exposed and vulnerable, more should be done.
“Through the 4th Asia Pacific Water Summit, the Philippines hopes this message is heard clearly and acted on urgently,” he said.
The Filipino official raised the Philippines’ experience following the onslaught of recent series of typhoons in the country.
He particularly mentioned Tropical Depression ''Agaton'', which inundated large swathes of the Visayas region at the height of summer and displaced many residents.
Total damages was estimated at $1.6 billion, representing the country’s health insurance budget for around 60 percent of the total population, he said.
“But, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen of this meeting, the narrative can still be transformed: from frustration and desperation to one of action and inspiration,” Secretary Borje said.
“This is where climate justice becomes relevant in what we do - a guiding light towards a more informed collaboration among our nations, so that our peoples, across generations, will be equipped to restore and ensure the quality of and access to water for all – as a matter of life – a dignified life.”
Borje’s speech elucidated President Rodrigo Duterte’s position on climate change.
Last week, Duterte during his regular Talk to the People program stressed that wealthy countries must be held accountable for erratic severe weather events caused by climate change drivers that caused damage and destruction to developing nations like the Philippines. Presidential News Desk