President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed this afternoon the National Framework Strategy for Climate Change in a no-fuss ceremony at the regular meeting of the National Climate Change Commission at the Asturias Hotel.
The signing of the Framework came a month early from the deadline specified by the Republic Act 9729 better known as Climate Change Act of 2009. The Framework shall serve as the basis for a program for climate change planning, research and development, extension, and monitoring of activities to protect vulnerable communities from the adverse effects of climate change.
In an interview, Secretary Heherson Alvarez of the Climate Change Commission said that the Philippines is the first country in Asia with an approved framework strategy to address climate change.
He said that the signing of the Framework is a positive development amidst the extreme heat and drought in the country brought about by the El Niño phenomenon.
He said that the Phillippines is identified as one of the top countries that is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change such as extreme heat and longer hot season, drought, heavy rains and flashfloods. He expressed alarm at the many catastrophes that hit the country recently which he said were brought about by climate change.
With the approval of the Framework, the Commission will begin work to draft the National Climate Change Action Plan which will be formulated in accordance with the National Framework Strategy for Climate Change.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo presided over the meeting of the Climate Change Commission after presentations conducted by Mr. Lorenzo Tan, President of World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Philippines and DOT Secretary Ace Durano who presented major tourism projects in Central Philippines.