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Climate and Environment

Philippines urges UN climate agency to enhance access to climate finance

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Philippines urges UN climate agency to enhance access to climate finance
A rescuer crosses a river using a zip line in an attempt to reach the landslide-hit village of Kantagnos in Baybay town, Leyte province on April 13, 2022, following heavy rains brought about by tropical storm Megi.
AFP/Bobbie Alota

MANILA, Philippines — The country’s Climate Change Commission called on the United Nations climate change agency to streamline processes and improve modalities in accessing climate finance to bolster the defenses of vulnerable communities to the impacts of climate change.

CCC Secretary Robert Borje stressed the urgency of enhancing access to climate finance at the 15th Meeting of the Executive Committee of the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage last week, the commission said in a release.

In his intervention, Borje said that vulnerable nations like the Philippines continue to bear the brunt of the climate crisis as he called for urgent climate action.

Cyclones Odette (Rai), Ulysses (Vamco) and Rolly (Goni) caused loss and damage valued at around $1.2 billion, which Borje said represents the government’s national health insurance funding for about 61 million Filipinos.

“The cascading impacts of loss and damage are compounded further by the COVID-19 pandemic and its burden on the country’s economy,” he said. Loss and damage refers to the costs that some nations are facing because of a warming planet.

“Let us look at ways to streamline processes, simplify procedures, and improve the efficiencies of existing modalities,” the official also said.

Experts said the reports released by the UN climate planet send a strong message that the Philippines should strengthen measures that will help its citizens cope in a warming planet.

Borje urged developed countries to “fulfill their climate finance commitments, with limited domestic fiscal resources becoming even scarcer as developing countries deal with the impacts of climate change.”

He added that financing and investments, technology and innovation, and capacity development through inclusive multilateralism are crucial to addressing intensifying loss and damage from climate hazards.

In COP26 climate talks last year, developed nations blocked the establishment of a funding facility that will help vulnerable countries cope with losses and damages from climate change impacts. They opted to initiate a “dialogue” on the topic in future talks. — Gaea Katreena Cabico

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