While many have been focused on the global health crisis, the oldest student organization of the University of the Philippines, Upsilon Sigma Phi, turns its attention to the worsening global climate situation.
The organization created the Climate Action Network (CAN) to focus discussion on climate change and practical solutions for it. CAN encourages an interchange of ideas and solutions among Filipinos on how to address this pressing global problem.
Congress Majority Representative and Upsilon Sigma Phi Alumni Association (USPAA) Chairman Martin Romualdez lauded the initiative of Batch 1995 led by Dominic Afuang, Justinn Valerio, and Norman Garcia for creating the platform. Romualdez said that the current health situation has provided the planet a brief respite for recovery and humans must take this opportunity to talk about and create solutions to address the alarming natural deterioration happening.
The Climate Action Network was launched with Department of Energy Undersecretary Felix William Fuentebella outlining the contributions of the Philippines to the Paris Agreement. He shared how the Department of Energy laid down the Philippine Energy Plan that supports the country in adapting to climate change. The main goals of this plan are to boost indigenous energy production, install additional power generating capacities, promote and expedite investment, promote consumer welfare, and strengthen local and international partnerships.
Fuentebella said that the effort to address climate change is a serious national endeavor and that the Philippine government will continue to create policies, laws, and initiatives that strengthen climate resilience. "The country is one step further in meeting the development goals of affordable and clean energy, sustainable cities and communities, and climate action."
Unilever Vice President for Sustainability and USPAA President Ed Sunico said that the initiative seeks to raise awareness about climate change. "While it seems that COVID-19 is our biggest challenge now, it is a fact that two of the biggest threats we are facing remain to be climate change and social inequality. Climate change is not just an environmental concern but also a social one, especially when it unjustly impacts the lives and livelihoods of specific groups of people in our society."
"We want to spread the message that each Filipino can contribute to addressing climate change and we created a platform for it," Sunico added.
The group will be holding a series of free talks on different issues concerning climate change. Topics will include renewable energy opportunities in the Philippines, sustainable water solutions, and green building practices.
You can check out this link to view and participate in upcoming seminars and future U-Talk events.
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