QC gov’t launches climate crisis action plan

Published August 11, 2022, 1:46 PM

by Aaron Homer Dioquino

The Quezon City government, in collaboration with the C40 Cities, has launched a new environmental initiative that will address the climate crisis in the city.

Mayor Joy Belmonte led the Climate Action Implementation (CAI) program launching ceremony at the Novotel Manila in Araneta City, QC on Thursday, Aug. 11, along with Vice-Mayor Gian Sotto, British Ambassador to the Philippines Laure Beaufils, C40 Regional Director for East, Southeast Asia, and Oceania Milag San Jose-Ballesteros, city officials, and other guests.

The C40 Cities is a network of mayors of nearly 100 leading world cities collaborating to deliver the urgent action needed to confront the climate crisis, according to www.c40.org.

Through the CAI, which is part of the Urban Climate Action Plan programme funded by the United Kingdom government, the C40 will work with 15 cities from different countries in Africa, Southeast Asia, and Latin America, to deliver at least two priority high impact actions from their climate action plans and embed them into city governance, planning and decision making structures, supporting continued monitoring and progress of climate actions.

Quezon City is the only city in the Philippines which is part of the group since 2015.

“The UK recognises that climate action at the sub-national level is a key element of the global net zero equation. With rapid urbanization, cities like Quezon City, will have more crucial role in the climate transition to curb emissions, ensure a green recovery and low-carbon growth, while safeguarding citizens against the severe impact of climate change,” Beaufils said.

According to the city government, the program will implement transformational climate change actions and mainstreaming activities based on the city’s enhanced Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP).

It will focus on policies and actions to enhance energy efficiency, amend the “green building code,” and expand the adoption of renewable energy in the government-owned, commercial, and residential buildings, the local government said.

It will also help Quezon City become “carbon-neutral” by 2050 and secure a greener future for its residents.

CLIMATE ACTION IMPLEMENTATION. Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte and British Ambassador to the Philippines and Palau Laure Beaufils sign the pledge of commitment, during the launching of the Climate Action Implementation (CAI) program, at the Novotel, Araneta City, Quezon City, Aug. 11, 2022. The CAI Program, which is funded by the UK government, is a new environmental initiative that takes urgent action to address the climate crisis in collaboration with C40 cities. It will implement transformational climate change actions and mainstreaming activities based on the city’s Enhanced Local Climate Change Action Plan. (Mark Balmores/ MANILA BULLETIN)

“The CAI will definitely expedite the city’s climate action initiatives as we aspire to be the leading city in advancing inclusive, ambitious, and evidence-based climate actions in the Philippines to a livable and quality community for all,” Belmonte said.

“This partnership will surely intensify our commitment in protecting every QCitizen against the effects of climate change. We hope that this will be the beginning of our future collaborations for a safe, healthy, and greener society,” she added.

Belmonte said that through the program, all public buildings in the city will be solarized, including the city’s three hospitals (Rosario Maclang Bautista General Hospital, Novaliches General Hospital, and Quezon CIty General Hopsital), public schools, and the City Hall.

She added that the city’s bike lanes will be extended so that more citizens will be encouraged to use bicycles when traveling, and carbon emission will be lessened. More walkable corridors will be also be created.

“Sa lahat po ng mamamayan ng lungsod Quezon nais ko lamang pong hikayatin kayong lahat na makipagtulungan po sa pamahalaan natin upang atin pong ma-address o matugunan ang tinatawag nating climate crisis o climate emergency na napagmamasdan naman natin ngayon sa pagbago ng ating klima (To all city residents, I want to encourage all of you to cooperate with our government so that we can address what we call the climate crisis or climate emergency which we are now seeing in the changes in our climate),” the mayor said.

“Quezon City, as you know already, has its climate action plan with clear priorities that were already outlined. So, we are working here with the partner that is committed to making real life difference and maximizing its impact on two areas – renewable energy and energy efficiency. Both of which will, in the space of three years, make a real difference not just to emissions although obviously it is a core priority, but also on the quality of life of the citizens in the city,” Beaufils said.

The city’s enhanced LCCAP 2021-2050 affirms the city’s commitment to a sustainable urban future, and a green and just recovery in light of the Covid-19 pandemic (according to quezoncity.gov.ph).

It sets out a strategic framework and road map to build climate resilience, pursue carbon neutrality, advance green economic development, and provide a livable and quality community for all.