QUEZON CITY, Philippines – September 23, 2020 – President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday addressed the United Nations (UN) General Assembly for the first time. In his speech, he called on all parties to the Paris Agreement to honor their commitments to fight the climate crisis.
Reacting to the statement, Greenpeace Country Director Lea Guerrero said:
“Greenpeace is renewing our calls for President Duterte to declare a Climate Emergency  as a policy instrument that would ensure that the administration acts on the climate crisis with the much-needed urgency he has called for in his speech.
“We urge President Duterte to issue an executive order to put climate action at the center of all policy decision-making from local to national level. This will ensure the Philippines’ rapid and just transition to a low-carbon pathway through the phaseout of coal and fossil fuel investments.
“Aside from calling in countries to enhance their commitments to the Paris Agreement, the declaration must also be a call for climate justice and hold big polluters–fossil fuel and cement companies–accountable for their role in driving climate change  which has placed millions of Filipinos in vulnerable situations with loss of lives, homes and livelihoods.
“Indeed, Filipinos cannot afford to suffer more. President Duterte must use this opportunity to declare a Climate Emergency that will enable a recovery that will transform our economy and society to tackle the climate crisis and promote positive environmental and health outcomes. Doing so will help build resilience against future shocks, and ensure a society that puts the well-being of people and nature first.”