Press Release
April 29, 2011

Legarda Urges Cooperatives to Join Crusade for a Climate-Resilient Nation; Calls for Green Enterprises

Senator Loren Legarda urged the cooperative sector to join in the nationwide effort to make the country disaster- and climate-resilient.

Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, made the statement during the First National Capital Region Cooperative Sector Conference on Climate Change organized by the Metro South Cooperative Bank Foundation, Inc.

She encouraged cooperatives to focus on green enterprises that make use of recycled and natural materials, like the ECHOstore, which promotes the creation of products and designs that are made by various communities and livelihood groups in the country, thereby advocating green living, fair trade and care for the environment.

"One of the principles of cooperativism--the concern for community--is geared towards the achievement of sustainable development, which is essential in climate change adaptation," she said.

The Senator has partnered with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) to conduct livelihood programs that promote green skills such as newspaper bag weaving, creating slippers and bags from water lilies, and making accessories such as bracelets and rosaries from old magazine strips.

She said that the cooperatives sector can also forge a partnership with the Small Business (SB) Corporation, which can provide loans to help micro, small and medium enterprises.

Legarda stressed that what is important is to promote a sustainable lifestyle because unsustainable development practices have depleted the country's natural resources, and this ecosystems decline is further aggravated by climate change.

She explained that it is the task of every citizen to be involved in efforts to reduce disaster risks and adapt to climate change. Furthermore, the cooperative sector has the capacity to be key participants in meeting the challenge of this global phenomenon.

"I urge all cooperatives to take up this important task of reviving and nurturing our environment. You must continue to improve your current activities that promote sustainable development, unite and mobilize your collective efforts in confronting the climate change challenge," she said.

"There is no time to lose. We must all work together and forge a network of cooperation to raise awareness and promote solutions to climate change. We must be resolute in creating a safer future for this and the next generations," Legarda concluded.

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