Press Release
February 27, 2024

Manifestation of Senator Risa Hontiveros on former United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon

Mr. President, and if the good sponsor is willing, I would like to be made a co-sponsor of this resolution on Ban Ki Moon and his many initiatives in his life's work, including the Global Green Growth initiative

If recent history has anything to teach us, it is that the environment cannot, must not, and need not, be sacrificed to achieve economic growth and development.

The Philippines is blessed with an abundance of natural resources, from our lush forests to our vibrant marine ecosystems. However, these treasures are under constant threat from various forms of exploitation, pollution, and degradation.

In the West Philippine Sea alone, the damage caused by unlawful reclamation activities of the Chinese government to ecosystems within our Exclusive Economic Zone has been estimated at 35-billion Pesos, at last count.

Climate change is exacerbating these challenges and impacting the livelihoods and well-being of countless Filipinos, especially those in vulnerable and marginalized communities. That is why it has been said that the Philippines is at the greatest risk of experiencing multiple climate hazards out of any other country on Earth.

From the Climate Change Conferences in Cancun and Durban, as well as the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil, popularly known as Rio+20, former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has worked tirelessly to ensure that the world remains committed to the pursuit of sustainable development and the fight against climate change.

Among the initiatives from Rio+20, I firmly believe that the Global Green Growth Institute, or GGGI, has the potential to create lasting change for our world, and the world future generation will be born into.

The 1987 World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED) introduced an intergenerational element to the discussion, highlighting our collective responsibility to include generations yet unborn, and popularized the definition of sustainable development as development that "meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."

Our fight against poverty is intrinsically linked to the state of our environment. Being part of the GGGI gives us the opportunity to lift our people out of poverty without sacrificing the natural world to do so. Together, we can protect our environment, reduce poverty, and build a more sustainable and equitable future for all Filipinos.

Maraming Salamat po, Kamsahamnida former Secretary-General Ban for showing us the way.

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