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Duterte signs Paris Agreement on Climate Change

Despite previous misgivings, President Rodrigo Duterte finally signed the Paris Agreement on Climate Change on Wednesday, March 1.

Malacañang on Wednesday released the signed the Instrument of Accession to be submitted to the Senate for concurrence:



Despite strong Cabinet support for the agreement, Duterte had mulled pulling the Philippines out of the pact, underscoring his concern that small countries would be disadvantaged by it.

"I just hope that the nations that are controlling the interests there, including the money that they will contribute to the common fund — which I think we are not qualified to be in there — ayusin lang nila because 'pag hindi, magwi-withdraw ako. I'll be the first one," Duterte said at the time.

For his part, Climate Change Commissioner Manny de Guzman heaved a sigh of relief that Duterte is finally signing the Paris Agreement.

"I am overjoyed with the President’s ratification of the Paris Agreement. The Philippine delegation’s hard work to lobby the 1.5-degree climate goal during the Paris negotiations has finally paid off," he said in a statement.

De Guzman pointed out that the ratification is in fulfillment of Duterte's promise at his first State of the Nation address.

"This is a clear articulation of his marching orders for the Climate Change Commission in the succeeding months. Not only does this affirm the President’s pronouncement during his first SONA that climate change is a top priority of this administration, but also his advocacy of championing climate justice for the poorest of our poor," he said.

"I share our President’s vision for a healthier and more sustainable future for the Filipino people. The 1.5-degree climate goal as prescribed in the Paris Agreement is our threshold of chance and hope. I believe that our President’s resolve for climate action will keep us in the right direction of attaining social justice. With this greater task at hand, we, in the CCC, will remain steadfast in our commitment to pursue efforts in keeping with the principles manifested in the Paris Agreement," he added.

De Guzman also commended Senator Loren Legarda for pushing for the ratification of the Paris Agreement.

"I commend Senator Loren Legarda, UN Global Champion for Resilience, who has been passionate and constant in her commitment and advocacy to ratify the Paris Agreement," he said.

The Office of the President is expected to deliver the signed Paris Agreement to the Senate on Wednesday afternoon. — TJD, GMA News