World leaders urged to act on climate change
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - October 23, 2015 - 10:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Various business groups in the country have joined the mounting call on world leaders to come up with a binding agreement that will address the threat of climate change, especially in vulnerable countries like the Philippines.

Business leaders yesterday signed the Manila Declaration, which also included commitments from the private sector on how it will contribute to make the country resilient to the effects of climate change.

“We seek for the governments of the world to come to an international agreement and national commitments to reduce carbon emission,” read the declaration.

“(We also urge them to) establish a reliable monitoring, reporting and verification system to follow-up on the nation’s contributions (and) create enabling environment and market mechanisms to facilitate the transformation of industry, energy, agriculture and forestry systems,” they added.

The business groups also called on world leaders to contribute to climate finance and provide funds and skills to enable the most vulnerable countries to become more resilient.

Among the declaration signatories are the Philippine Business for Social Progress, Philippine Business for the Environment, Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Management Association of the Philippines, Makati Business Club, Federation of Philippine Industries and the Financial Executives of the Philippines.

Also signing the document are executives of Shell, Aboitiz Group of Companies, Ayala Corp., Bank of Philippine Islands and Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) Co.

In addition to their calls to world leaders, the business groups also pledged to develop and implement mitigation strategies as part of their operations and in their value chains.

“(We commit to) recognize climate change risks and provide solutions to make our operations, our value chain, our customers and the communities where we operate more carbon efficient (and) develop solutions to help increase the resilience of communities against the consequences of a changing climate,” they said.

The business leaders also expressed support to the country’s intended nationally determined contributions (INDC), which they said are aligned with national priorities, circumstances and capabilities, subject to meaningful consultation with all stakeholders.

In its submission to the United Nations Framework Convention on the Climate Change, the Philippines – through the Climate Change Commission (CCC) – pledged to a “conditional” reduction of 70 percent of its greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

Joyceline Goco, CCC deputy executive director, earlier told The STAR that the country would need around $12 billion to $15 billion in support from the international community to achieve its INDC.

Alexis Lapiz, chief of the commission’s strategic partnership division, welcomed the support of the business sector.

“We commend this united stand of the private sector to support national measures on climate change and mainstream climate change adaptation and mitigation into their business,” Lapiz said.

“Participation of every stakeholder to sufficiently address climate change is essential. With the support of businessmen, we can look forward to climate-smart industries and services, one of the strategic priorities of the National Climate Change Action Plan,” he added.

ABOITIZ GROUP OF COMPANIES ACIRC ALEXIS LAPIZ AYALA CORP BANK OF PHILIPPINE ISLANDS AND PHILIPPINE LONG DISTANCE TELEPHONE BUSINESS CHANGE CLIMATE CLIMATE CHANGE CLIMATE CHANGE COMMISSION PHILIPPINE BUSINESS
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