The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Philippines welcomes the submission of the Philippines’ Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) last 15 April 2021, but reminds the government to ‘act swiftly, with higher ambition and with a great sense of urgency.’
Atty. Angela Ibay, head of Climate Change and Energy Programme for WWF-Philippines, said:
“The country’s official commitment to reduce emissions by 75% by the year 2030 from the agriculture, waste, industry, transport, and energy sectors highlights the importance being given toward climate action. Achieving the 75% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is anchored on enhanced access to climate finance, technology development and transfer, and capacity building. The value of ensuring ecosystem integrity, of using traditional knowledge, education, and public awareness, and of meaningful inclusive collaborative participation in climate action are specifically recognised therein. Moreover, the Philippine NDC expresses the challenges and adaptation needs of the country to address climate change while pursuing a low carbon, sustainable, and climate, and disaster-resilient development.
“While we appreciate the commitments made by the Philippine government, we also note with disappointment that only 2.71% of the 75% emission reduction target remains unconditional, while the remaining 72.29% is conditional. This gives much space for the possibility that the NDC targets will not be met in full. Climate action must be among our top priorities, as the lives of millions of Filipinos will continue to be affected otherwise.
“What is being asked of all countries during the Decade of Action is higher ambition in the fight against climate change. This ambition is not entirely reflected in the way the Philippine NDC has been structured, with more details and clarity needed to articulate how targets can be achieved. Ultimately, the Philippine NDC has to deliver against the 1.5C ambition of the Paris Agreement.
“We see that plans and policies are in place that allow for higher ambition in the NDC, and that can lead to a significant cut in our emissions by 2030. We can hardcode emissions reduction into our national plans, so long as we have the political will to meet our commitments. With the NDC submitted, the government must set in motion the actions, policies and measures needed to attain the commitments made therein.
“Even as we remind the government of the importance of prioritizing climate action, we call on all stakeholders to work together to take our commitments even further and to act upon them. We look forward to continued constructive engagement with the government, the various agencies and other stakeholders on the key aspects of the Philippine NDC and look towards its enhancement and the attainment of goals set therein. We are running out of time in the fight against climate change, and our islands will be among the worst affected should we fail to change course now. We ask that the government act swiftly, with strong ambition, and strive to meet the 75% emission reduction in full, for the sake of all our shared futures.