QUEZON CITY, 21 November 2023 – At the Climate Investment Forum (CIF) 2023 held yesterday at Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria, key stakeholders from the public and private sectors sought to establish conducive conditions for climate-related investments aligned with national policies and sectoral needs. Stronger collaboration between the government and private sector is necessary to scale up sustainable and green investments that propel economic growth, as laid out in the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2023-2028. In a keynote address, Department of Finance Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno outlined the country's first Sustainable Finance Roadmap which sets the stage for a comprehensive, whole-of-government approach to promote sustainable finance. The roadmap includes strategic plans such as integrating risk management, encouraging climate related disclosures, and participating in international initiatives. "We are laying the groundwork for enabling a just transition where every sector, every community, and individual can thrive," he emphasized. Diokno highlighted the crucial role of the “Green Forces” alluding to the Inter-agency Technical Working Group for Sustainable Finance. This body reviews the sustainable finance landscape, addresses policy gaps, and integrates sustainability into microeconomic policies. Director Nieva Natural of the National Economic and Development Authority presented enabling mechanisms for climate investment, including the PDP 2023-2038, emphasizing the need for investments from the private sector to augment public investments and funds. The World Bank, through its Country Climate and Development Report, explained the benefits of investing in climate solutions. The report states that “the cost of climate adaptation is substantial but easily outweighed by the economic benefits of reduced climate damage. Mitigation measures would increase GDP by about 0.5 percent in 2040 and generate 80,000 jobs.” For his part, Dr. Selva Ramachandran, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme, reiterated UNDP's commitment to supporting the country's efforts in climate-resilient development and accelerating climate investment and financing. Emphasizing the need for increased private sector engagement, Dr. Ramachandran stated, "Together, we can forge a path towards sustainable development, harnessing the strength of bayanihan for positive change." The event also featured a presentation on the Strategic Investment Priority Plan by Director Sandra Marie Recolizado of the Board of Investments. Panel discussions ensued. The first session was moderated by Mr. Bonar Laureto of SyCip, Gorres, Velayo and Company. It featured Department of Transportation Assistant Secretary Leonel Cray De Velez and Department of Energy Director Willian Quinto addressing topics on steering investments towards a low-carbon pathway. The second panelists included Ms. Maria Christine Ponce Garcia of Nestle Incorporated, Mr. Peterson Fernandez of Globe, Mr. Edwin Carrie of UNDP and Mr. Marcel Silvius of the Global Green Growth Institute who delved into the theme of advancing adaptation actions. Discussions followed during the open forum, covering topics such as security concerns in climate programs, private sector thoughts on new technologies, and challenges faced by organizations in investing more in climate action. Commissioner Rachel Anne Herrera concluded the forum, summarizing key insights and emphasizing the need for collaborative efforts between the public and private sectors to address climate challenges. In her closing remarks, she expressed optimism for the country’s sustainable future, noting that the Philippines is poised to lead the region in sustainable finance, fostering innovation and prioritizing climate-related investments. “With sustained support of our partners from the private sector and business community, we shall be leveraging on boosting collaboration aimed towards maximizing opportunities and available resources beyond the defined landscape of climate financing,” she pointed out. Commissioner Herrera said that in line with the pronouncements upheld by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., “we must mitigate, adapt to, and be part of the solution – embark on advocacies, programs, and initiatives that will help us preserve our home.” “This year’s CIF serves as a testament that through our strong collaboration, we can achieve and accomplish more. We hope to further strengthen our linkages beyond this forum, in the aim of carrying out fit-for-purpose and transformational climate interventions,” she concluded. The CIF 2023 is part of the 16th Global Warming and Climate Change Consciousness Week happening from November 19 to 25, 2023. It serves as a platform for enhanced collaboration between the government and private sector, addressing challenges and capitalizing on opportunities in climate investments. The forum seeks to expedite the transition towards a climate-resilient and low-carbon future. For updates on the CCC Week commemoration visit the Climate Change Commission’s website at https://climate.gov.ph and www.facebook.com/cccphl.
(left) CCC Secretary Robert E.A. Borje together with officials and representatives from BARMM Ministries in the Capacity Building Program. (right) CCC and the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Energy release turtle hatchlings in Aboitiz Cleanergy Park, Davao City. MANILA, 25 October 2023 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC), in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), conducted the Capacity Building Program for Ministries in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) to foster climate resilience in the region. Secretary Robert E.A. Borje, CCC Vice Chairperson and Executive Director, highlighted the immense challenges faced by the BARMM region, emphasizing the need for transformative governance to combat climate change effectively. “We may face the same storm, but our vessels differ. Some have advanced radars and engines; we have the most basic. We must transform ourselves into the most resilient, the most capable vessel so that we can proceed with our journey not just for peace, not just for development, but for sustainability, progress, and full prosperity for our people,” said Borje. BARMM Minister Akmad Brahim echoed Secretary Borje's sentiments, emphasizing the need for proactive planning and building resilience in the face of climate change. “By engaging in proactive national and local planning, we can improve our ability to prevent future disasters and adapt to the changing climate. This requires good governance informed by sound climate science,” said Brahim. UNDP Deputy Resident Representative Edwin Carrie stressed the interconnectedness of climate change, peace and development issues, and emphasized the importance of prioritizing financing to effectively tackle climate change impacts at the local level. “Development is not a checklist of separate development issues such as climate, such as peace, such as poverty reduction, such as effective governance. Those are interconnected development issues that interact and impact into the development trajectory of any country,” said Carrie. The Capacity Building Program, attended by technical representatives from 15 ministries, covered topics such as Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP), People's Survival Fund (PSF) project proposals, and the conduct of greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory and climate change expenditure tagging (CCET). The CCC thanked BARMM ministries, LGUs, and all stakeholders for their active participation in the Capacity Building Program. This collaborative effort marks a significant milestone in the region’s journey towards a sustainable, climate-resilient future. Conserving marine biodiversity In a parallel event, the CCC joins hands with BARMM’s Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Energy in releasing turtle hatchlings in Aboitiz Cleanergy Park, Davao City. The activity underscores the CCC's dedication to safeguarding marine biodiversity and protecting vulnerable species from the impacts of climate change. Sea turtles, essential to our oceans particularly in maintaining healthy coral reefs, were released as part of a crucial conservation effort. "By participating in the release of these hatchlings, we are not just conserving a species; we are contributing to the overall health and resilience of our marine environment," Borje emphasized. The CCC encourages the public to join in this endeavor by learning more about sea turtles and supporting local conservation initiatives for a sustainable environment. For more information on the CCC’s climate mainstreaming activities, visit https://climate.gov.ph and https://facebook.com/cccphl.
The People’s Survival Fund Board approves project proposals endorsed by the Climate Change Commission. Photo courtesy of the PSF Board Secretariat. MANILA, Philippines | 25 October 2023 – The Climate Change Commission (CCC) lauds the approval of projects geared toward increasing the adaptive capacity of local government units (LGUs) through climate change adaptation by the People’s Survival Fund (PSF) Board. In its 20th meeting held on Monday, the PSF Board approved five climate change adaptation projects endorsed by the CCC amounting to Php 540.3 million. “The PSF Board’s approval of these five projects signals a pivotal message on the value of advancing adaptation measures at the local and community level, especially at a time when risks and challenges posed by climate change demand immediate and urgent actions,” said CCC Vice Chairperson and Executive Director Robert E.A. Borje. He thanked Department of Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno, PSF Board Chair, for his leadership and commitment in advancing the objectives of the PSF. Borje also thanked the PSF Board members for their sustained effort and collaboration throughout the review and evaluation, and field validation exercises, which led to CCC endorsement and PSF Board’s project approvals. These projects are submissions of LGUs from the PSF Board-issued Call for Proposals in February to April 2023. Adaptation interventions to be implemented by LGUs include establishment of climate field school for farmers, flood protection, river ecosystem management, installation of solar-powered pumps, and mangrove rehabilitation. “With the benefits to be provided by these projects, the PSF will be able to demonstrate effective and sustainable practices on local climate actions, championing the resilience of the most vulnerable sectors to climate change,” Borje added. During the same meeting, the PSF Board approved a Php 2-million Project Development Grant (PDG) for the Municipality of Besao, Mountain Province to undertake project preparatory activities such as hydrological and geotechnical studies to establish rationale of the LGU’s adaptation intervention. The said approvals enabled 17 LGUs to receive support from the PSF and its PDG. Among the previously approved projects are from Lanuza, Surigao del Sur; Kitcharao, Agusan del Norte; Gerona, Tarlac; Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte; Sarangani Province; and San Francisco, Camotes Island, Cebu. The CCC, in coordination with the DOF, is working on further streamlining the accession of PSF through enhancement of the processes entailed by project proposals from submission until the approval stage. Created through Republic Act No. 10174, amending the Climate Change Act of 2009, the PSF is a long-stream finance for adaptation projects of local government units and community organizations. Its goal is to enhance the resilience of communities and ecosystems to climate change. The CCC is likewise mandated to conduct the Climate Rationale Review and Evaluation (CRRE) of project proposals submitted for PSF, convening the National Panel of Technical Experts to look into the climate rationale of projects. The CRRE process takes into consideration the historical and present data, ensuring that projects are fit-for-purpose and responsive to specific climate risks and vulnerabilities of an LGU. For more information on the PSF, visit the CCC’s website at climate.gov.ph or the People's Survival Fund Facebook page.
Climate Change Commission Secretary Robert E.A. Borje addresses NGOs and other stakeholders at the Facing the Impact of Climate Change on Sustainable Development forum MANILA, PHILIPPINES | 19 October 2023 – The Climate Change Commission highlights the crucial role of collaboration with civil society organizations (CSOs) in pursuing climate action, particularly in resilience-building efforts, in a public forum yesterday. “Our gathering today marks an initial step towards our partnership to further contribute to climate action. For climate change, no task is too big or too small. Participation in programs and activities, like tree and mangrove planting and coastal cleanups – when done together, simultaneously – can make a huge difference,” said Secretary Robert E.A. Borje, CCC Vice Chairperson and Executive Director, in a public forum held to commemorate the Social Development Week 2023. With the theme, “Facing the Impact of Climate Change on Sustainable Development,” the forum was sponsored by the Caucus of Development NGO Networks (CODE-NGO), one of the country’s largest groups of CSOs, composed of 12 national and regional networks representing 1,600 non-government organizations, people’s organizations, and cooperatives. Borje pointed out that the CCC, under the guidance of President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos, Jr., has established and strengthened partnerships with stakeholders, including civil society organizations, development partners, the private sector, and local government units through various coordination mechanisms, including the "Working to Empower Climate Action Network” or “WE CAN", tailored specifically for civil society organizations. “The Commission counts on your active involvement in this resilience-building effort. But we can do more if we continue to work together. The CCC champions advocacies where all of you can take part. May we continue to be part of the solution to this global governance challenge of our generation,” he said. “In the end, all our actions and initiatives will count as means to save lives, protect our livelihoods, and secure our future. As partners, sama-sama tayong magkaisa tungo sa isang bagong bansang matatag,” Borje added. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Maria Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga also emphasized the importance of multistakeholder collaboration and partnerships. “We aim for inclusive processes recognizing that every voice needs to be heard, and for partners to secure co-benefits and build resilience for a truly whole-of-society effort in addressing climate change,” she said. For updates on the Philippines’ climate mainstreaming activities, visit the Climate Change Commission’s website at https://climate.gov.ph and www.facebook.com/cccphl.
Pasay City, Metro Manila, 10 October 2023 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) underscored the mitigation and adaptation benefits of nature-based solutions in urban areas at the Philippine Urban Forum 2023 held on October 5-6, 2023 in PICC, Pasay City. Nature-based solutions involve working with nature to address societal challenges, like climate change. These include actions that are broadly categorized as the protection, restoration, or management of natural and semi-natural ecosystems; sustainable management of working lands and aquatic systems; and the creation of novel or human-built ecosystems. “Our cities are facing unprecedented challenges due to the triple planetary crises of pollution, climate change, and biodiversity loss. Urban areas compound these crises but have a fundamental role to play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions through nature-based solutions that offer innovative ways to reduce carbon emissions and enhance overall climate resilience,” said CCC Commissioner Rachel Anne S. Herrera. Urban development experts presented existing and potential applications of nature-based solutions, including the sustainable management project of the Upper Marikina River Basin Protected Landscape (UMRBPL) led by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the Renewable Energy Technologies (RETS) project of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) which assists seaweed farmers in Tawi-Tawi, and the biodiversity conservation programs funded through the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of Germany. The UN-Habitat also presented its Healthy Oceans and Clean Cities Initiative focusing on circular economy and nature-based solutions in the urban environment. Commissioner Herrera acknowledged the tremendous potential of nature-based solutions, but also recognized the challenges surrounding their implementation. “Urban spaces that are suitable for nature-based solutions depend on the topography, physical structure, and urban density, therefore projects must be contextualized to the local environment. Governance for nature-based solutions requires the active cooperation and coordinated action between multiple stakeholders with different priorities and interests, as well as adequate knowledge and resources,” said Herrera. Since nature-based solutions are mostly components of wider scope climate adaptation and urban greening projects, Commissioner Herrera also encouraged local government units to tap the Green, Green, Green Program under the Local Government Support Fund, which provides funding for the construction, rehabilitation, repair, or improvement of projects for green open spaces, such as public parks and plazas, arboretum, and botanical gardens. “We need to strengthen our efforts that would champion the benefits of nature-based solutions as viable measures in saving our future and our planet. Nature-based solutions are an integral piece to the whole picture of our efforts on climate action,” Herrera concluded. The Philippine Urban Forum 2023 (PhUF), with the theme “Transforming our Cities and Building Resilient Communities,” is spearheaded by the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development in partnership with the United Nations Human Settlements Programme. The PhUF is the country’s largest multi stakeholder platform for knowledge and technology exchange on sustainable human settlements and urban development, highlighting the Philippine New Urban Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals 2030. For more information on the CCC’s climate mainstreaming activities, visit https://climate.gov.ph and www.facebook.com/CCCPHL.
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