January 6, 2012
Legarda Lauds DA's Climate Adaptation Initiatives;
Senator Loren Legarda commended the Department of Agriculture (DA) for carrying out the integration of climate change adaptation measures in all its programs and projects.
"The agriculture and fisheries sector has always been vulnerable to natural hazards, particularly typhoons. As a nation that is highly reliant on this sector for livelihood and sustenance, we have to make it resilient to disasters and climate change," said Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Climate Change.
The DA's initiative includes creating a "climate information system" for agriculture and fisheries, investing in agricultural research and infrastructure, and designing relevant finance policies such as weather-based insurance.
Previously, Legarda already called for an agricultural adaptation program that would include the abovementioned efforts including improved water governance and land use policies, better forecasting tools and early warning systems.
"Climate change will put our food security at risk as the unusual weather patterns we have been experiencing have already caused decrease in crop and fisheries yield. The DA's step is crucial and badly needed to alleviate the impact of the changing climate on the agriculture and fisheries sector," she stressed.
The Senator also noted that the DA has sought convergence with other agencies of government--the Departments of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Agrarian Reform (DAR), Public Works and Highways (DPWH), and Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)--to ensure optimal results of its programs. As such, she also called on these agencies and all other departments of government to integrate climate change adaptation measures in their programs.
"Climate change has already posed serious threat to our basic human rights - food, potable water, shelter, decent livelihood and life itself. All agencies of government, with the support of all citizens, must institute robust adaptation strategies and strengthen our nation's defense against this great global challenge," Legarda concluded.