When typhoons come, and they come pretty often on our side, we put our faith in God and bear the brunt of nature. When it’s over, we smile in front of the cameras despite the devastation around us and carry on with life because we say, “The Filipino spirit is waterproof.”
Engr. Noel Antonio Gaerlan, Climate Change commissioner, contests the Filipino people’s resiliency. He tells LEAGUE, “If we are truly resilient, why do disasters continue to harm us on an annual cycle?”
CLIMATE CHANGE AND THE COMMISSIONS
Climate change is an issue of major concern. “It is the change in the weather, global temperature, usual precipitation, wind patterns, and other measures of climate that occur over several decades or longer,” explains Commissioner Gaerlan. Climate Change Commission or CCC works hand-in-hand with the local officials and executives, capacitating them to address and adapt to climate change. CCC is only on its ninth year since the enactment of RA 9729 or the Climate Change Act creating the CCC. Comissioner Gaerlan is one of the three commissioners of the CCC, with President Duterte as its chairman. Prior to his appointment to CCC in 2016, Commissioner Gaerlan served as the Executive Director of the Manila Bay Coordinating Office (MBCO) and as the OIC Assistant Director of the DENR- Biodiversity Management Bureau. Some of his previous experience include developing master plans of major river systems in the country and climate-tagging and proofing the same.