Catch of the Week
After ‘Haiyan,’ World Leaders Vow to Address Climate Change in the Philippines

After ‘Haiyan,’ World Leaders Vow to Address Climate Change in the Philippines

Catch of the Week
Aftermath of a typhoon in the Philippines (ADB Photo Library)

Aftermath of a typhoon in the Philippines (ADB Photo Library)

World leaders at the United Nations (UN) climate change summit in Warsaw, Poland heeded the call of the Government of the Philippines to address climate change concerns in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan which affected millions and left thousands dead.

Naderev Saño, head of the Philippine delegation at the UN climate talks which started 11 November 2013, gave an emotional speech in front of world leaders, saying that the devastating typhoon was directly linked to global climate change.

Saño, who heads the government’s Climate Change Commission, gave the speech during the opening of the 12-day UN climate talks while rescue and relief operations continue in the hard-hit areas of Leyte Province. Despite daunting challenges such as the lack of communications, transportation, and logistics, pledges of support from abroad continue to pour in.

“The typhoon was part of the sobering reality . . . negotiators should go the extra mile in their efforts.” — Christiana Figueres, UN climate chief

The government official capped his speech by vowing to fast until participants of the climate meeting agree to come up with “meaningful” solutions to address climate change.

A report by the BBC quoted UN climate chief Christiana Figueres saying that “the typhoon was part of the sobering reality.” She also said “negotiators should go the extra mile in their efforts.”

The report also said participants from the Alliance of Small Island States see the typhoon as a reason for “more work” on climate change in Warsaw.

Climate change is an important concern in Southeast Asia. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has been focusing on an integrated economic assessment model to examine the potential costs of climate change in coastal areas, agriculture, and water supply through various studies.

The ADB studies aim to raise the level of understanding of all sectors and stakeholders on possible impacts of climate change, with analyses that lead to regional strategies supported by national programs linked to local policies and activities.

Climate change is one of the major challenges that member nations of the Coral Triangle, including the Philippines, currently face.

DOWNLOAD: The Economics of Climate Change in Southeast Asia: A Regional Review

DOWNLOAD: Climate Change in Southeast Asia

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