MANILA—The Senate on Tuesday officially concurred in ratification of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change two weeks after Pres. Rodrigo Duterte signed it last February 28.
This after Senate Resolution 320 was passed on third and final reading with 22 affirmative votes, no negative votes and no abstentions.
This treaty seeks to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius. To recall, Pres. Duterte initially opposed the ratification of the agreement.
He changed his mind about the treaty after most of his Cabinet members voted in favor of what has been described as a landmark global deal to cut harmful carbon emissions that are causing climate change.
Sen. Loren Legarda, chair of the Senate Subcommittee on the Paris Agreement under the Committee on Foreign Relations, said the treaty shows that “developing and developed nations could pursue climate action together.”
“Paris Agreement is a testament of solidarity and a call for global climate action,” she said in her speech at the Senate plenary.
She said the treaty is also a “manifesto for climate justice” noting that countries which have contributed the most to global warming must shoulder the greater burden of acting with greater accountability to the environment.
The senator said that it also allows the Philippines to acquire support from developed countries for adaptation, mitigation, technology development and transfer, and capacity building.
Moreover, she said it also strengthens the country’s role in climate talks by exercising governance, oversight, leadership, and decision-making.
She also described it as an “embodiment of a legacy” as it will be recognized as one of the Philippines’ “shining achievements.”
“The 17th Congress can be regarded as the legislative assembly that championed climate action, environmental protection, and sustainable development,” Legarda said.
“The 17th Congress, under the Duterte Administration, will be remembered for paving the way for green jobs and green growth for the Filipino nation,” she added.
Legarda, who is also UN Global Champion for Resilience, previously stressed the importance of the treaty for the Philippines being a vulnerable nation to the impact of climate change.
She said that the ratification would allow the Philippines to access to the Green Climate Fund.
With the treaty fully ratified, the Philippines will become part of the succeeding meetings about the Paris Agreement.
She said that it is to the advantage of the Philippines to be in talks to converge with fellow vulnerable nations.