Duterte: Philippines aims to cut greenhouse-gas emissions by 75 percent by 2030

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 22 2021 09:02 AM | Updated as of Sep 22 2021 09:24 AM

Students protest at University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City, as they join youth-led worldwide climate strikes on September 20, 2019. Joining the students are indigenous people groups, coal-affected communities, coastal villagers and other activists from different parts of the country. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News/file
Students protest at University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City, as they join youth-led worldwide climate strikes on September 20, 2019. Joining the students are indigenous people groups, coal-affected communities, coastal villagers and other activists from different parts of the country. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News/file

MANILA—The Philippines aims to reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions by 75 percent by 2030 as part of its responsibility to mitigate the global climate crisis, President Rodrigo Duterte said in a speech during the 76th United Nations General Assembly.

Duterte said a moratorium on the construction of new coal power plants has been issued, as well as a "directive" to explore nuclear-energy options.

"The Philippines accepts its share of responsibility and will do its part to avert this collective disaster," the country's chief executive said.

"But this contribution will be rendered useless if the biggest polluters past and present choose to do business as usual."

Duterte also noted that vulnerable nations "suffer" the most from climate change. He urged developed countries to "fulfill their long-standing commitment" to financing, technology transfer and capacity building focused on the developing countries.

"The risks and burden of a warming climate are simply not the same for everyone. The greatest injustice here is that those who suffer the most are those the least responsible for this existential crisis," Duterte said. 

"We, therefore, appeal for urgent climate actions, especially those who can truly tip the balance...This is a moral obligation that cannot be avoided," he added.

In its August 2021 climate change report, the UN said emissions due to human activities have "unequivocally" pushed the global temperature up 1.1 degrees Celsius from its pre-industrial average. 

Global leaders have earlier committed to cap temperature rises to 1.5 degrees Celsius under the 2015 Paris climate accord.

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— With reports from Reuters and Agence France-Presse