December 27, 2009 in Featured
with NORDIS reports
BAGUIO CITY — Katribu Partylist declared that climate change mitigation and adaptation initiatives must be pursued at the community level as it commended and welcomed the the draft climate change ordinance of Negros Oriental. This came as the dismal results of the Climate change negotiations in Copenhagen, Denmark hit the news.
“There is not much to expect from the Copenhagen Accord. KATRIBU Partylist would rather rely on the strength of local communities in mitigating the effects of climate change through sustainable practices”, Beverly Longid, President of KATRIBU Partylist asserted.
She added that global initiatives like the proposed climate change ordinance in Negros Oriental must be strengthened, supported and promoted.
“The fight against Climate Change should be won on the ground by local communities because the impact of the climate crisis is severely felt at that level”, declared Longid,
The Negros Oriental provincial board environment committee is currently hearing a proposed ordinance that seeks to consolidate the efforts of individuals, institutions and the provincial government to address risks posed by climate change to vulnerable sectors and communities.
Longid, an Igorot of Bontok and Kankanaey, said that indigenous peoples have also been undertaking adaptation and mitigation measures since time immemorial to deal with climate change as manifested in their daily toils as defenders of their ancestral lands and nurturers of the environment.
Indigenous peoples, not only in the Philippines but also in the entire world have customary laws and practices that protect the environment and promote biodiversity. Our sustainable livelihoods and practices certainly contribute to mitigating the adverse impacts of climate change.
Indigenous farmers, for instance, follow traditional knowledge on resource management that works with the laws of nature. They grow varieties of crops to sustain biodiversity and practice organic farming that do not rely on pesticides that contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.
KATRIBU Partylist, together with the indigenous peoples it seeks to represent, vows to protect ancestral lands and resources. Without forests, there would be no water for irrigating the swiddens and the rice lands we till, without which our food security and livelihoods are threatened, Longid said.
The group also expressed concern that the Philippines is ill-equipped to face the challenges of climate change. Food security, health, and the general welfare of Filipinos including indigenous peoples are at stake. Ironically, indigenous peoples are most vulnerable to the effects of climate change even if we contribute the least to the climate crisis.
Reacting to the Philippine delegation’s decision to lobby and support the non-binding Copenhagen Accord, Longid said that this only reflects the weak stance of the Arroyo government on environment issues.
Considering its poor record on protecting the environment and its proclivity to accommodate foreign interests, the Arroyo government was expected to buckle under the pressure of the US and other developed countries during the climate negotiations in Copenhagen, said Longid.
The Copenhagen Accord was brokered by the United States and was approved after rich countries bullied their way into its passage. Several developing countries including the Philippines reportedly helped in brokering the deal. It allowed for a market mechanism, carbon-trading, which allows carbon emissions as long as the emitting country pays governments, companies and forest-owners for keeping the forests intact. # nordis.net