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Climate and Environment

Environment groups launch 'green' scorecard for 2022 polls

Gaea Katreena Cabico - Philstar.com
Environment groups launch 'green' scorecard for 2022 polls
Street artists paint a mural on a wall opposite the COP26 climate summit venue in Glasgow on October 13, 2021.
AFP/Andy Buchanan

MANILA, Philippines — A coalition of environmental groups launched Monday its “green scorecard” for the 2022 national elections, which aims to determine the positions and commitments of poll candidates on climate and environmental issues.

In a briefing, the Green Thumb Coalition expressed hope that the results of the scorecard will serve as a tool to help voters decide which candidates to vote in the May polls.

"It’s very important for environmental groups to come together and influence elections because we know the next leader will shape policies and development pathway, and set the scope and depth of actions protecting the environment," Alyansa Tigil Mina national coordinator Jaybee Garganera said in Filipino. ATM is one of the convenors of the coalition.

Which issues will be covered by the scorecard?

  • Climate justice
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Waste management
  • Mining extractives and mineral resource management
  • Biodiversity preservation and ecosystem integrity
  • Energy transformation and democracy
  • Natural resources and land use management and governance
  • People-centered sustainable development

How will it work? Presidential, vice presidential and senatorial candidates must respond to the GTC survey questionnaire by March 27.

Then, candidates will be assessed through their response to the scorecard, academic credentials and track record, policy pronouncements, and linkages to major players.

GTC is hoping to release the results of the scorecard on April 8, a month before the crucial polls.

The coalition issued "green" scorecards in 2016 and 2019 polls.

What happens if a candidate refuses to answer the questionnaire? Sanlakas secretary general Aaron Pedrosa said the scorecard is necessary for candidates to clarify their stances on environmental issues, especially those who do not attend fora or debates.

"It’s not a loss for us [if they refuse to participate in the scorecard]. It is a loss for them. That is very telling of how they take the push for environmental agenda. We encourage all the candidates to take the environment seriously, and by not responding is a sign that they are not taking the environmental agenda seriously," he said.

Why is it important? Environmental and climate campaigners stressed it is important that tackling the impacts of climate change and environmental degradation is included in the platforms of candidates in the elections. Poll aspirants are urged to present coherent plan of action to deal with the climate crisis. 

The Philippines is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate hazards.  It is at risk from sea level rise, tropical cyclones, flooding, drought and biodiversity loss.

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