With Typhoon Ulysses uprooting communities, killing at least 13 people, and leaving one of the worst floods in years, the impact of climate change can no longer be denied. Despite being a natural disaster, we can’t say that disasters like these are completely unprecedented.
As early as 2015, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that worsening global warming could bring supertyphoons to erratic climates such as the Philippines. Meanwhile, 2019’s Global Peace Index ranked PH as first in the list of countries prone to climate change risks.
It also found that 47% of our population live in places highly susceptible to floods, typhoons, earthquakes, tsunami, and drought. Thus, the now-resounding online call for climate emergency.
DECLARE CLIMATE EMERGENCY.
— zild (@zildbenitez) November 12, 2020
Per You Matter, declaring a climate emergency would mean acknowledging that climate change is causing real harm to a country’s people and humanity as a whole. It would also call for international help on limiting these changes. Over 1,800 laws in 31 countries have declared a climate emergency.
‘Typhoon Rolly is not the strongest typhoon to sweep through the Philippines, nor will it be the last. There will be more and they will likely be worse,’ said Greenpeace member Virginia Llorin.
‘Now is the time for the Philippine government to show true climate leadership by championing climate justice for the poorest of the poor who bear the brunt of the damage and calling for accountability from industrialized nations as well as corporations most responsible for the climate crisis.‘
Back in September, President Duterte was apparently still considering the call for climate emergency, as the environment is on ‘top of his agenda‘.
Along with the calls for climate emergency calls, petitions have also emerged in efforts for environmental preservation amidst the continuing typhoons.
One example is the call to stop the construction of Kaliwa Dam in Metro Manila as it could potentially demolish the 300-hectare Sierra Madre mountain range.
‘We thus call on President Rodrigo Duterte and all government leaders to revoke the Kaliwa Dam Project. We believe that this project will not address the problem but also make conditions worse for the Philippines,’ the petition reads.
The petition.org site has since reached 105,000 signatures as of writing.
Banner credit: Manila Bulletin