STATEMENT: Fidel Ramos blasts President Duterte for not ratifying the Paris Climate Agreement

Manila, 30 Oct 2016 – In a strongly-worded opinion article on the Manila Bulletin today, former President Fidel V. Ramos castigated President Rodrigo Duterte for frequent complaints and his inaction on the Paris Climate Agreement, which comes into force on November 4. Mr Ramos said President Duterte “is unwittingly shooting himself in the mouth, and also all of us, 101.5 million Filipinos” and “has done little to move the Paris Agreement forward”. He concluded that President Duterte should approve the ratification of the Paris Climate Agreement to promote the Philippines’ interests and fight for climate justice.

Reacting to the news, Renato Redentor Constantino, Executive Director of the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC) released the following statement:

“Ratifying the Paris Climate Agreement is in the best interest of the Philippines and the Filipino people. It ensures that our leadership is maintained internationally, and gives us the platform to demand far greater action towards limiting global warming to under 1.5C degrees so we can avoid far worse climate impacts. It would also enable us to seek far greater accountability from industrialized countries.

We agree with the Duterte administration that industrialized nations, due to historical responsibility, be required to contribute more resources and technological assistance to the most vulnerable countries so they can protect their people while they pursue sustainable economic development.

We applaud cabinet ministers who support ratification. It is indeed possible to pursue industrialisation and environmental protection at the same time. However, the government must present a unified front and immediately forge ahead on ratifying the climate treaty.

Failure to ratify the climate agreement means the Philippines would become an outsider to global climate negotiations. Being non-party to the treaty also presents challenges to our current leadership positions, both as ASEAN chair and as part of the leadership troika of the Climate Vulnerable Forum, a grouping of more than 40 countries. Several members of both groupings have already ratified the climate treaty, therefore, the Philippines risks losing its moral standing in leading and representing our collective interests.”
The Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities is a policy group in the Philippines promoting low-carbon development initiatives, sustainable energy solutions and fair climate policy in vulnerable countries.

For more information:
AC Dimatatac, Media Coordinator, +63 998 546 9788, media@icsc.ngo