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The Philippines is already one of the world’s most natural disaster-prone countries due to a combination of high incidence typhoons, floods, landslides, droughts, volcanoes and earthquakes, and the country’s considerable vulnerability to these hazards. Though a relatively minor emitter of greenhouse gases, it is severely vulnerable to climate change and its vulnerability is set to increase between 2010 and 2030 (DARA; Climate Vulnerability Monitor, 2012). It is ranked 117th on the Human Development Index (UNDP; Human Development Index, 2014).
Changes in rainfall patterns and rising temperatures as a result of climate change will result in increased frequency and intensity of floods, typhoons, heat-waves and droughts; reduced water availability and quality; and rise in sea levels.
The knock-on effects of this will be seen in many sectors, for example in agriculture, climate change will impact yields of crops such as rice and maize, while flooding in coastal areas and erosion of coastal ecosystems will affect coastal communities. The poor are particularly at risk from the adverse effects of climate change. Many live in naturally hazard prone areas and are dependent on natural resources for their livelihoods.
As early as 1991 the Philippines began to respond to climate change through a series of policy and legal initiatives. The Philippines Climate Change Commission (CCC) was formed in 2009. Chaired by the President, it is the sole policy-making body of the government tasked to coordinate, monitor and evaluate its programs and action plans relating to climate change. The CCC has formulated the National Framework Strategy on Climate Change (NFSCC), National Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP) and guidelines for Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP).
CKDN is supporting a project in the Philippines which draws lessons from and scales up initiatives by an alliance called Partners for Resilience (P4R) to reduce the impact of natural hazards on vulnerable communities.