A somber Secretary Mary Ann Lucille Sering faced the media Monday to report on the outcome of this year's United Nations climate change negotiations in Doha, Qatar, which she said fell below expectations due to a lack of commitment from more developed countries.
“Overall, the Doha talks based on the developing country perspective is weak,” said Sering, executive director of the Climate Change Commission, at a briefing in Malacañang.
The Doha negotiations, which ended December 8, finished with a mere 18-percent commitment to reduce carbon emissions below 1990 levels, she said.
“Ang ibig pong sabihin nito: kung patuloy na ganito lang ang commitment ng developed countries ay maaaring ‘yung trajectory ng tinatawag nilang impact na 2-degree to 4-degree ay mangyayari,” Sering explained.
She added that what makes the conference more lukewarm is the fact that developed countries Canada and Japan have decided to pull out of the Kyoto protocol, which sets binding obligations on developed countries to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
“Isa rin po nating nakita kaya siya weak, ang Canada at ang Japan ay nag-pull out ng Kyoto, hindi sila sumama sa second commitment period. Nauna na po dito ‘yung United States of America. So ang nangyayari po, we have an 18 percent reduction only and there is another 82 percent that is not captured as what science actually requires,” Sering said.
Other than a lack of commitment from developed countries to lower greenhouse gasses, Sering said the Green Climate Fund earlier approved was unclear as well, in terms of sourcing funds.
“Doon naman sa usaping pinansiyal, kahit gumawa ng Green Climate Fund ay walang klaro pa rin kung saan manggagaling ‘yung pondong ilalagay sa Green Climate Fund,” Sering said.
Nevertheless, Sering maintained that at least for the Philippines, the future remains bright due to a strong commitment by the government to address the issue of climate change.
“We remain to be optimistic kasi ang Philippines na ngayon ang tinitingnan na parang pilot or example kasi sa rami po ng mga institutional response tulad ‘nung pinirmahan na batas ni President Aquino na People’s Survival Fund,” she said.
Patricia Denise Chiu
December 17, 2012