Press Release
May 10, 2011

Legarda Bats for More Funds for Climate Adaptation Efforts

Senator Loren Legarda today pushed for the establishment of a permanent fund for the country's climate change programs, stressing that the lack of budget halts further progress in the crusade for a climate-resilient nation.

"The ill effects of a changing climate can be prevented if we consider climate change adaptation not as a cost but as a wise investment," Legarda said in her sponsorship speech for the People's Survival Fund (PSF) bill.

Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change, explained that the PSF is a special trust fund for the financing of adaptation programs and projects based on the National Strategic Framework and the National Climate Change Action Plan.

The fund shall be sourced from public sources, foreign or local, including 10 percent from cash dividends declared by all government-owned and controlled corporations; five percent of the proceeds from the sale of certified or verified emissions reduction carbon credits generated from domestic activities; and 10 percent of the monies collected under Republic Act 8794, otherwise known as the Motor Vehicles User's Charge.

"This fund shall be used to support local governments' adaptation activities, such as in the areas of land and water resources management, agriculture and fisheries, health, infrastructure development, and natural ecosystems."

"This will also support the improvement of the monitoring, controlling and prevention of diseases triggered by climate change; establishment of forecasting and early warning systems; and strengthening institutional development, for local governments, for preventive measures, planning, preparedness and management of impacts relating to climate change," Legarda said.

The Fund will be managed by the People's Survival Fund Board, under the Commission on Climate Change, which will also approve project proposals submitted by local government units and community-based institutions for funding.

This PSF Board shall be composed of the Secretary of the Department of Finance as chair, Vice-chairperson of the Commission on Climate Change, Secretary of the Department of Budget and Management, Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority, Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government, a representative from the business sector, and a representative from the NGOs, to provide overall strategic guidance in the management and use of the fund.

"There is no substitute for national and local government budget that are climate change-adaptive. It is time to create further progress in our efforts, which will not be sustainable if resources are provided in bits and pieces. The creation of the People's Survival Fund, as proposed, will allow us to pole-vault toward ensuring disaster- and climate change-resilient communities," Legarda concluded.

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