The climate crisis is hitting poor countries hardest

THE Philippines is the country hardest hit in Asia by the frequency and greatest intensity of typhoons unquestionably caused by climate change. The World Meteorological Organization says weather-related disasters in the Philippines have increased five times over the past 50 years. What you read here is the truth; it is a painful, self-inflicted pain of humanity, but knowing the truth could set us free.

Warming oceans and rising sea levels are all impacting the Philippines. Roxas Boulevard will be underwater in 20 years. Mango and banana crops have been hit hard with mango production declining by 4%, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) in 2022.

Demonstrators shout slogans during a protest outside the venue for the 27th UN Climate Change Conference at the Sharm el-Sheikh International Convention Center in the eastern Red Sea resort of the same name of Egypt, Thursday, November 10, 2022. PHOTO AFP

Demonstrators shout slogans during a protest outside the venue for the 27th UN Climate Change Conference at the Sharm el-Sheikh International Convention Center in the eastern Red Sea resort of the same name of Egypt, Thursday, November 10, 2022. PHOTO AFP

The 27th Conference of the Parties (COP27) of the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) is taking place in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, until November 18, 2022, and more than 100 heads of state will attend participated. For 10 years, rich countries have promised to reduce greenhouse gases, move away from fossil fuels and compensate poor countries, but most have never done so. In fact, carbon dioxide emissions have increased, a shameful lie record. Companies have also lied by “laundering” their CO2 polluting projects. Al Gore reveals at COP27 “…the top 14 individual polluters are all oil and gas fields and their associated facilities, although their emissions are ‘significantly underreported’ by 50%.

Methane leaks and flaring were found to be three times greater than they reported to the UN. Methane is 80 times worse for the atmosphere than CO2.

In fact, all the oil companies have lied again and again and are still lying to the world and making billions in extra profits by selling oil and gas at inflated prices on which the world economy depends. The European Union has passed a law requiring them to pay an additional “bargain” tax.

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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said the world is on the road to a fatal accident with the foot on the accelerator for not stopping the burning of fossil fuels. In fact, the world has increased its production of deadly CO2 by 14%. Rich country governments continue to provide financial subsidies to oil exploration companies. “The fossil fuel industry is killing us,” Guterres also said, “and leaders are out of step with their people, who are demanding urgent climate action.” This increase in emissions means that it will not be possible to keep the global temperature below a 1.5 degree increase. The planet has warmed continuously over the past eight years and will continue to warm. We can expect more disastrous climatic events.

The climate crisis is getting worse, not better, and the planet is in convulsion. If you have any doubts about this, consider the following. Thousands of experts and scientists report that 2022 is the worst year for climate disasters. The Philippines has experienced the worst series of super typhoons in living memory, causing flooding and devastation.

Pakistan has experienced a massive drought with 62% less rain and temperatures of 40 degrees Celsius. Then the incessant rains came and 33 million people had to flee because a third of the country was under water. About 1,500 people died. China, the world’s worst CO2 producer, also experienced temperatures above 40 degrees that lasted 70 days, followed by flooding. Massive flooding has also devastated parts of South Korea with twice the average rainfall and the worst flooding in 80 years.

India had temperatures as high as 49 degrees. Many have died on the hottest days in the 122 years since records began. Rainfall and drought decreased by 71%. Huge forest fires raged across Europe with the worst drought in 500 years. Siberia and the United States also experienced their worst droughts in living memory. Australia lost $3.5 billion due to massive flooding. Somalia is suffering from four years of devastating drought and thousands of people are suffering from famine. The low islands of the South Pacific go underwater.

Despite the call at COP27 for trillions of dollars to be paid in court for the damages caused by rich countries to the poor, the rich mostly make promises but little money despite the fact that they are behind of the climate crisis. The Philippines are unlikely to be compensated for disasters and losses caused by more intense typhoons. The Philippines adds CO2 to global warming from its current 28 coal-fired power plants. These have provided 44.5% of the total energy supply since 2015. Twenty-two new plants are approved by the government but are on hold due to public outcry against them and the Philippines’ commitments to the Paris Agreement aimed at reducing CO2 emissions.

There are few alternative renewable energy generation projects that provide electricity. Renewable and completely free sources of energy are available in the Philippines – hydroelectricity, solar panels, wind, geothermal and biomass – which can replace oil and coal, so investors should focus on more renewable energy sources .

Guterres called for climate justice and said the 2015 Paris Agreement promises for rich developed countries to give $100 billion to the poor as compensation and to mitigate climate change disasters have not come to pass. not materialized. “I stressed the need to double [the] adaptation support to $40 billion a year by 2025,” as agreed at COP26 in Glasgow last year. “Climate destruction is happening. People are hurting now.”

What people everywhere can do is organize their communities so everyone starts tree nurseries in their backyards and when the rainy season starts they have community plantings in designated areas or with the Indigenous Peoples. The Preda Foundation has records showing that it has planted (with the help of the Aeta indigenous people of Zambales) a total of 49,150 mango saplings and other fruit trees on their ancestral lands since 2002 and many more planted before this date. These trees absorb at least 8.3 tons of CO2 every year. Anyone can join this ongoing project. Send to [email protected]

Aboriginal people are lovers of nature and the forest. They live in harmony with what is left of it. They were the hunters and gatherers before political logging families cut down rainforests, exported raw logs and sold them to rebuild Europe and Japan. The powerful families then claimed ownership of the denuded ancestral lands of the indigenous people and planted 3.2 million hectares with 325 million coconut trees which made them incredibly wealthy and powerful enough to rule the Philippines.

The destruction of the Philippine rainforests is a crime against indigenous peoples but also against a stable climate for Filipinos. The Philippines is increasingly affected as the planet warms and temperatures rise and rural areas become impoverished for millions of small farmers. The Philippines must phase out coal-fired power plants and switch to renewable energy sources.