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The Climate Change Commission honors the visit of His Holiness Pope Francis to the Philippines as it highlighted his empathy to countries that are highly vulnerable to climate change impacts and challenged Filipinos to care for the environment and act on climate change.

During the Pontificate’s five-day visit, he significantly emphasized how human-induced climate change affects developing countries in terms of mortality and economic costs.

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His Holiness Pope Francis waves to the public during his motorcade en route to Manila Cathedral on January 16.

In His Holiness’ speech at the University of Santo Tomas and his public mass at Luneta, he also posed a challenge to all Filipinos: care for the environment and protect each other from the effects of climate change.

Aboard on his Papal Plane from Sri Lanka to Philippines on Thursday, January 15, Pope Francis called out human beings as responsible for climate change as he said, ‘Man has gone too far’ and ‘it is man who continually slaps down nature.’

The Pope has been vocal about his concerns on the urgency of addressing climate change. It was also widely reported that the Pope told journalists travelling with him on his Papal plane that he was frustrated by the lack of progress made at the Lima climate talks, and that he hoped delegates at the Paris climate summit in December this year will be ‘more courageous.’

The message and concern of the Pontificate is also highly relevant to CCC’s role as president of the Climate Vulnerable Forum, an international partnership of vulnerable countries seeking to build consensus on international policies and promote cooperative action to deal with global climate change, which convened at the Lima climate talks last December 2014.

“We are a gathering wave and I have no doubt that, working together, we have the means to overwhelm pessimism with concerted climate action,” said Secretary Lucille Sering of CCC.

This 2015, Pope Francis is expected to release his encyclical message- the highest form of papal writing, on ecology and it is expected to come out before the United Nations Climate Conference in Paris to encourage negotiators and rally people of faith towards climate action.

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January 27, 2015