Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon Paje signs the Paris Climate Agreement at the United Nations Headquarters
22 April 2016, New York – The Philippines, along with 174 countries, signed today the Paris Climate Agreement, the largest number of signatures any treaty has garnered on the first day of opening for signature.
Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon Paje signed for the Philippines. He was joined by Senator Loren Legarda as co-head of delegation, Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Lourdes O. Yparraguirre, Climate Change Commission (CCC) Secretary Emmanuel de Guzman, DENR Undersecretary Jonas Leones, and CCC Commissioners Frances Veronica Victorio and Noel Gaerlan.
In a statement delivered after the signing, the Philippines highlighted the steps it has taken to pursue national actions to address climate change through its intended nationally determined contribution (INDC).
“Despite financial limitations, the Philippines has already demonstrated its commitment to meeting its pledge with the implementation of the national climate action plan and the integration of climate change in national and local development plans and budgets,” Secretary Paje said.
The signing ceremony was attended by Heads of States and/or Governments, led by French President Francois Hollande, as well as Ministers of 175 countries.
Secretary Paje added that the Phiippines will continue to cascade climate change mitigation and adaptation actions to sub-national levels and to invest in climate-resilient local economies, consistent with post–2015 international frameworks such as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
The Philippine Delegation to the Paris Agreement signing. (First row, left to right): Ambassador Lourdes O. Yparraguirre, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon Paje and Senator Loren Legarda. (Second row, left to right) Climate Change Commissioners Frances Veronica Victorio and Noel Gaerlan.
“To secure a sustainable future, the Philippines is pursuing value-adding strategies to ensure the provision of ecosystem services and green growth to address pollution and environmental degradation. To this end, a greenhouse gas inventory management and reporting system is being developed to create a transparent, accurate and comparable baseline of emissions,” the Secretary added.
“Too much is at stake. Developed countries therefore need to do more in terms of dramatically raising their NDC ambition compatible with the 1.5-degrees Celsius threshold, as well as raising funding contribution to the climate action plans of vulnerable countries, which require adequate, predictable and sustainable financing. The Philippines also urges developed and developing countries alike to take urgent pre-2020 action,” Secretary Paje stressed.
At the High Level Informal Event for the early entry into force of the Paris Agreement, Senator Legarda called on countries that signed the Paris Agreement to immediately ratify the Agreement for its early entry into force.
The Senator committed to rally the Philippine Senate to act on the Philippines’ own ratification of the Agreement.
Senator Legarda has written to fellow Parliamentarians of the 43 countries making up the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) urging them to do the same.
“The Philippines joins you here today to take that next step and affirm our commitment to undertake and complete domestic processes to bring the Agreement into effect within this year,” Senator Legarda said.
To date, 15 countries have ratified the Agreement. For the Paris Agreement to enter into force, 55 Parties, representing at least 55 percnt of global emissions, must join. END