CHR declaration on fossil fuel firms should lead to policies on climate change — green group
MANILA, Philippines — The landmark declaration of the Commission on Human Rights that major fossil fuel companies are responsible for human rights harms linked to climate impacts should open the door for future policies on climate change.
Greenpeace Philippines country director Lea Guerrero said this Wednesday, following the announcement of the country’s rights body that carbon-polluting companies could be found morally liable for their role in climate change and its impacts.
Fossil fuels, when burned, release carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, making them major contributors to global warming.
“What this does is erode the social license of fossil fuel companies. Right now, fossil fuel companies are so entrenched in our political and economic systems and we have framed development relies on fossil fuels,” Guerrero said in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel.
Coal still dominant energy source in Philippines
A Greenpeace report released last month found that coal remains the dominant energy source in the Philippines despite the country’s commitment to move away from fossil fuels.
“We need to change that whole system of reliance… This has to spur more movement to renewable energy and enable that transition out of fossil fuels,” Guerrero said.
The Greenpeace Philippines head added that the CHR pronouncement should prod policymakers to create measures that would hold fossil fuel companies accountable for the human rights harms resulting from the climate crisis.
“The next steps that should come out after this would be this should inform lawmakers what kind of policies do we have to make now in a world with climate change, in a world where we know that fossil fuel companies are fuelling the climate crisis which is impacting communities,” Guerrero said.
Greenpeace is one of the organizations urging President Rodrigo Duterte to declare a climate emergency in the Philippines, which would hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for driving climate impacts and phase out fossil fuel facilities. — Gaea Katreena Cabico