Lacson: PH can be model country in the fight against climate change

Published January 26, 2022, 7:10 PM

by Ben Rosario

From is current status as poster country of global disasters, Philippines can be transformed into a model nation that was able to fight off the disastrous effects of climate change.

Senator Panfilo Lacson stage

Partido Reporma chairman and standard bearer Panfilo “Ping” Lacson aired this optimism as he vowed to make this part of his environmental agenda.

Lacson said the environmental agenda will be backed by science-based and data-driven solutions that would address the effects of climate change and global warming.

“Ang Pilipinas [ay] napakaliit na bansa para makapaglagay ng dent doon sa tinatawag na—sa climate change—‘yung problema. But then we are still part of an international community of nations and we can do our share. [The Philippines is a small country to put a dent in what we call the problem of climate change. But then we are still part of an international community of nations and we can do our share.],” Lacson said during a recent interview with broadcast journalist Jessica Soho.

Included in his environmental protection and anti-climate change goal is the swift transition into renewable into renewable and alternative sources of energy to help cut global greenhouse gas emissions by 1.5-degrees Celsius, relative to the 2015 Paris Agreement, which the Philippines signed along with 191 other nations.

The presidential aspirant also plans to make the country better prepared in its disaster risk response and reduction mechanisms by cracking down on one of the worst forms of corruption that happens whenever calamities strike.

“‘Yung kalamidad dapat naka-ready tayo. Ang problema [ay] maski ‘yung kalamidad pinagkakakitaan pa. (We must be ready in the face of calamity. The problem is that some calamities are being taken advantage of to rake in profits),” Lacson said.

Under a Lacson presidency, technology would also play a huge role in his government’s efforts to mitigate disasters.

He vowed to incorporate this in his urban and rural planning as a proactive approach to prevent massive loss of lives during extreme seismic events and other natural phenomena.

Lacson was motivated to include this particular aspect in his digital transformation agenda after seeing first hand last December how Baguio City is trying to solve environmental hazards like air pollution, fault lines, unexpected rainfall and other things through a geographic information system.

The presidential aspirant also mentioned that his disaster response plans would be sustainable and not limited only to natural calamities, but would extend even to man-made crises like armed conflicts and terrorist attacks.

Part of his objective, too, is to change the mindset of using calamities as springboard for politicians to advance their political careers under the guise of charitable acts at the expense of unsuspecting victims who must be helped and supported by the government with no strings attached.

“’Pagka mayroon kalamidad dapat ang prayoridad ng gobyerno nakatutok at saka sustained. Hindi pwedeng kung uso lamang saka lamang nagpupuntahan doon. Alam mo, kaya ako nakapagsabi ng mayroong politics of service at saka ‘yung politics of self-interest [kasi] alam mo kung saan ‘yung kalamidad doon nagkakagulo ‘yung mga pulitiko—kanya-kanyang epal. (Whenever a calamity strikes, the government has to make it a priority and sustain a focused response. We cannot be visiting calamity-hit areas just because they’re trending. You know, this is why I issued a statement recently about politics or service and politics of self-interest. Because, you know, whenever we have calamities that is only when you feel the presence of attention-grabbing politicians.),” said Lacson.