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DENR chief cites importance of global backing to advance PH’s position at COP 28

Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga

Environment Secretary Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga said on Wednesday that she hopes that the integrated messaging and the approach being pushed by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. will inspire other nations to back the Philippine position as they negotiate for favorable climate financing and support, as nations gather in Dubai, United Arab Emirates for the 28th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28).

Yulo-Loyzaga made the remarks when asked by reporters during a Palace press briefing on the importance for garnering other countries’ support on climate-related matters.

“I think it is extremely important for us to be heard by other countries because what we are trying to do at this point is really to approach our climate resilience by twinning adaptation, mitigation and, I should say a third leg, the disaster risk reduction, and that will involve the social, economic, environmental and scientific efforts of our whole of government,” Yulo-Loyzaga said via Zoom.

“What we have managed to do under this administration, because the President is one of those who have actually really supported the integration of climate into the different policy areas of the different departments and he understands the link between climate, biodiversity, pollution and sustainable development. These integrated messaging and the integrated approach that we are trying to now marshal as a country, we hope will inspire others as well.”

The Philippines, she said, is highly vulnerable to climate change, and it is actually also part of G77, a group of developing countries.

The Philippines, the DENR chief said, has so far achieved some recognition on this, even on its work on oceans and biodiversity. The country’s representatives will be speaking at a number of panels while at COP 28, as well as on side events of other organizers during the climate conference.

“And particularly, they have asked DENR, myself, to speak on oceans and climate, on minerals and climate, especially this is a group that is led by the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, or EITI and, of course, a number of nature-based panels as well and, of course, in the innovative financing that needs to go into this work related to loss and damage and adaptation,” she explained.

“And so, there is recognition. I should add one particular effort that is also recognizing the work that’s being done in the Philippines, and it is the work on green shipping and how we might be able to support the reskilling and up-skilling of our seafarers and those working in the energy sector,” she said.

According to Yulo-Loyzaga, the DOE is a very strong partner and leader at COP 28 and has been speaking in several forums especially about Filipino seafarers and the need for their re-skilling and up-skilling as part of the changes in the shipping industry.

“So marami pong intersecting themes that we are also being asked to speak at. I will be speaking at about 10 different side events of others po on these different areas that they have recognized the Philippines to have made headway on,” she said.

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. is leaving for Dubai on Thursday to participate in COP28, where he is expected to rally to the global community and call upon nations to honor their commitments, particularly in climate financing.

The President underscored the significance of the COP28 to the Philippines, having been determined as one of the most vulnerable countries to the impact of climate change. | PND

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