Members of the Global Legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment (GLOBE) in the Philippines met with British parliamentarian Sir Graham Watson to share their experience and discuss the role of legislators in tackling climate change on 8 November at the Manila Hotel.
Sir Graham Watson met with members of the House of Representatives Agapito Guanlao of Butil Paty-list, Barry Gutierrez III of AKBAYAN Party-list, Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan De Oro, Mel Senen Sarmiento of Western Samar, and Susan Yap of Tarlac in the GLOBE Philippines meeting.
Sir Graham, who received a Knighthood in Queen Elizabeth II's birthday honours list in 2011 for his services to politics. He is one of the Vice Presidents of GLOBE European Union and Chairs the Climate Parliament.
"Strong global networks like the Climate Parliament and GLOBE bring together parliamentarians worldwide to advance policies that promote the use of clean energy and other measures to achieve sustainable development. I am delighted to meet Filipino legislators who are interested to be part of this global initiative," said Sir Graham.
The international champion further adds, "While UN talks are moving too slowly, legislators can take actions now. For example, the Climate Parliament group in the European parliament is pushing for an increased share for renewable energy in the annual EU budget. We are pressing the EU to set up investments to increase support for research and development to reduce steadily the cost of clean energy which eventually benefit developing nations like the Philippines."
Christopher Estallo, Director of GLOBE Philippines said, "The meeting of Sir Graham and Filipino legislators show the willingness of legislators from opposite parts of the world to come together and discuss how to tackle global climate challenge."
He adds, "GLOBE International's role is to bridge legislators worldwide to mobilise actions and work together towards an ambitious future climate regime by 2015. To date, we already have 15 legislators who expressed support to be part of GLOBE Philippines."
GLOBE Philippines founding member, Tarlac 2nd District Representative Susan Yap said, "The latest report of UN IPCC report on climate science certainly calls everyone to act - mobilising legislators becomes imperative."
Congresswoman Yap, who also chairs the House Special Committee on Reforestation, adds, "Legislation need to timely address our country's needs and should be coherent with our national strategy. Having an international parliamentarian exchange will create better understanding and engagement with governments across the globe on how we can collectively unite and take action to achieve our common goal to combat climate change."
Congresswoman Yap with support from GLOBE Philippines will be participating in the upcoming UN climate negotiations –UNFCC Conference of the Parties (COP 19) in Warsaw, Poland this month.
Founding members of GLOBE in the Philippines: Senator Loren Legarda and members of the House of Representatives -Rep. Ma. Lourdes Acosta-Alba of Bukidnon, 1st District; Rep. Emmeline Aglipay of DIWA Party-list; Rep. Gary Alejano of MAGDALO Party-list; Rep. Kaka Bag-ao of Dinagat Islands; Rep. Rodel Batocabe of AKO BICOL Party-list; Rep. Walden Bello of AKBAYAN Party-list; Rep. Lawrence Lemuel Fortun of Agusan del Norte, 1st District; Rep. Ibarra Gutierrez of AKBAYAN Party-list; Rep. Agapito Guanlao of BUTIL Party-list; Rep. Douglas Hagedorn of Palawan, 3rd District; Rep. Leni Robredo of Camarines Sur, 3rd District; Rep. Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan De Oro City, 2nd District; Rep. Mel Sarmiento of Western Samar, 1st District; and Rep. Susan Yap of Tarlac, 2nd District.