Senator Loren Legarda is supporting the global call to reduce threats against marine species and also urged authorities and stakeholders to help protect marine wildlife and biodiversity from pollution and the impact of climate change.
Legarda made the statement in celebration of this year’s World Wildlife Day on Sunday, March 3, which carries the theme of “Life Below Water: For Life and Planet,” aligning with Goal 14 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
“As an archipelagic country, we depend so much for food and water from our oceans, but it is only until recently that we are ramping up efforts to rehabilitate and protect our marine life and environment. We need to sustain this level of awareness and action to ensure that we can still be able to provide for future generations,” Legarda said.
“As an archipelagic country, we depend so much for food and water from our oceans.”
Legarda lauded the recent collaborative efforts from government and stakeholders to rehabilitate Boracay and Manila Bay, as well as plans to rehabilitate other beach and tourist destinations all over the country.
The senator however noted that efforts must be aligned to the goal of pegging the global temperature rise at 1.5°C, citing the Special Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which projects lower climate risks to marine biodiversity, fisheries, and ecosystems, and their functions and services to humans at 1.5°C, compared to the 2°C of global warming.
Legarda, United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR) Global Champion for Resilience, shared other findings from the report, including a further decline of coral reefs by 70-90 percent at 1.5°C, whereas virtually all (>99 percent) would be lost at 2°C.
Projected decrease in global annual catch for marine fisheries is also about 1.5 million metric tons at 1.5°C, compared to a loss of more than 3 million metric tons at 2°C.
“As this World Wildlife Day focuses on life below water, we need to elevate the discussion and escalate our action at the local and global level to protect our marine resources in a more sustainable and meaningful fashion. In this time of climate crisis, we are compelled to do more for the sake of our future and our planet,” Legarda concluded.
“As this World Wildlife Day focuses on life below water, we need to elevate the discussion and escalate our action at the local and global level.”