Senator lauds women eco warriors fighting climate change

By Wilnard Bacelonia

April 29, 2024, 7:03 pm

<p><em>(PNA file photo)</em></p>

(PNA file photo)

MANILA – Filipino women play vital roles in the fight against climate change and building resilient communities.

Throughout history, women have been at the forefront of ecological protection and sustainability, Senate President Pro Tempore Loren Legarda said during her keynote speech at the “Filipina Changemakers: Champion for Climate Resilience Forum” at the Senate building in Pasay City on Monday.

“From grassroots activists to policymakers, women have played pivotal roles in championing sustainable practices and policies that promote climate resilience," Legarda said. "Any climate adaptation plan should recognize that while women are uniquely attuned to the needs of their communities, they are also the most vulnerable to climate disasters."

She cited the achievements of farmers Nida Collado San Vicente, Palawan and Mila Bongalbal of Tiwi, Albay.

They won in last year’s Philippine Resilience Awards for their works in sustainable forest management and resilient food systems, respectively.

Collado is the president of the Macatumbalen Community Based Forest and Coastal Management Association while Bongalbal heads the Joroan Farmers and Fisherfolks Association.

“Both are proof that gender is not a barrier to leadership and that women have a unique perspective to offer,” Legarda said. “From farmers implementing sustainable practices to activists advocating for clean energy, Filipina changemakers are driving innovation and inspiring change.”

Thus, Legarda said women must be empowered as climate actors and given access to education and resources to ensure that they are heard and their contributions valued.

“Let us reaffirm our commitment to creating a world where women and girls are given the chance to realize their potential. If we do this, together, we can build a more sustainable and resilient future for all,” Legarda said. (PNA)