Climate and Environment

Most Filipinos support goal to protect 30% of land and oceans by 2030 — poll

Gaea Katreena Cabico - Philstar.com
Most Filipinos support goal to protect 30% of land and oceans by 2030 â poll
This February 7, 2021 photo shows Masungi Georeserve in Baras, Rizal. The georeserve, known for its 60-million-year-old limestone formations, was restored after 20 years of protection.
Philstar.com/EC Toledo IV

MANILA, Philippines — A vast majority of Filipinos back efforts to protect at least 30% of the world’s land and oceans by 2030, a new survey suggested.

An online poll of more than 1,150 people found that 95% of Filipinos support a proposed “30x30” nature protection target, which is designed to help address biodiversity loss and mitigate the impacts of climate change. Ninety-one percent said they were highly or somewhat aware of talks on a nature protection goal.

Eighty-five percent of Filipino respondents want the government to back the “30x30” target. 

The same poll was also conducted by firm Vase.ai in Malaysia and Indonesia—other biodiversity-rich nations. Ninety-six percent of Malaysians and 98% of Indonesians support the pledge.

According to the survey commissioned by Malaysia-based Atri Advisory, 95% of Filipinos said they were extremely or very concerned about the biodiversity crisis.

While the Philippines is among the world’s megadiverse nations, it is tagged as a biodiversity hotspot with at least 700 threatened species. The Philippines is also one of the most vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change.

A coalition of more than 80 countries called High Ambition for Nature and People have already backed the "30x30" target. So far, only Cambodia is a member of the coalition from Southeast Asia.

"Southeast Asia comprises just three percent of Earth’s landmass, but it contains almost 20% of the world’s biodiversity," said Tony La Viña, associate director for climate policy and international relations of Manila Observatory.

"This poll shows that people in the region fully appreciate the value of this biodiversity to our own development and appreciate the role we can play in preserving it. This poll is a public mandate for the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia to embrace the 30x30 goal," the former environment undersecretary added. 

Nearly 190 countries are expected to finalize a global strategy that is designed to stave off a biodiversity crisis in United Nations Biodiversity Conference (COP15) that will be held in Kunming, China in April.



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