Legarda: COP26 must deliver on Paris pledge to help climate-vulnerable countries


House Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda said the upcoming 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) must deliver on the Paris Agreement’s commitments on climate finance to help vulnerable countries survive the impacts of climate change. 

Legarda on Tuesday also said she counts on the Department of Finance as head of the country’s delegation to the COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow to ensure that developed countries will urgently move to deliver on their commitments not just on climate finance but also on technology transfer and capacity building from developed countries to developing ones. 

Under its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the Paris Agreement, the Philippines has committed to reducing the country’s greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 75 percent. 

“Without these, the Philippines will not be able to build the capacity and technical know-how we need to avoid more GHG emissions, and we will not be able to survive the intensifying impacts of climate change. The same fate awaits many climate-vulnerable developing countries like us,” Legarda said during the Pre-COP26 media briefing. 

The COP 26 conference will be held from October 31 to November 12. 

Legarda also stressed the call of the Climate Vulnerable Forum for COP26 to finalize and deliver strong carbon market mechanisms and to enable emissions avoidance by  establishing the eligibility of activities which, in effect, would allow the Philippines and other developing countries to assert “our right to the remaining global emissions space without actually emitting them.”

Moreover, she said the Philippines expects also COP26 to agree on a Delivery Plan for the annual $100 billion over five years, from 2020-2024, pledged by developed countries to vulnerable countries to help them adapt to climate change and mitigate further rises in temperature.

Rich nations should have delivered $100 billion already starting last year and by 2025, the $100 billion should start increasing annually, Legarda said. 

Apart from this, she also expects COP26 to take action on Loss and Damage integral to its outcome. These will be critical to the implementation of the Philippines’ NDC, which will also be brought forward to COP26.

She also emphasized the need for ambitious national targets under the country’s NDC—and for making every budget a climate-adaptive budget, noting that the proposed P5.024 trillion national budget does not show the country’s commitment under the Paris Agreement. 

“I do not see a reflection of our NDC in our National Expenditure Program in the national budget that Congress is deliberating now. It is a business as usual budget. I don’t even see it as a pandemic recovery budget,” she said. 

“I would like to see a pandemic recovery budget that is aligned and attuned to the climate pathway that mainstreams ecological integrity,” she added. 

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