2015 interfaith climate change confab kicks off in Baguio

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BAGUIO CITY – The Interfaith Dialogue on Climate Change will examine environmental vulnerabilities of the Cordillera Administrative Region during its conference in Baguio City next Monday (July 6, 2015) in an effort to alert communities in the mountainous region on growing climate impacts.

Representatives from faith-based groups, government, the academe, youth, and indigenous peoples organizations will convene at the Baguio Convention Center to discuss individual and community responsibilities in protecting the region’s ecosystems and in enlarging   environmental awareness    in the context of religious obligations.

Delivering the welcome remarks will be Mayor G. Domogan and Councilor Elaine Sembrano of Baguio City.  Benguet Governor Nestor Fongwan will address the afternoon session while Dr. Gaudelia Reyes, dean of the natural sciences department of St. Louis University, will do the closing remarks.

The  day-long conference is part of a nationwide program sponsored the Climate Change Congress of the Philippines (CCCP), the Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches (PCEC),  the Philippine Council for Islam and Democracy (PCID), and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership with the Climate Change Commission and the  Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

The confab aims to develop interfaith unity and action on common local and national climate change challenges, according to Climate Change Commissioner Heherson T. Alvarez who convened the first national dialogue in November 2010.

Archbishop Antonio Ledesma of CCCP stressed that Pope Francis’ recent encyclical on the protection of the environment is providing a tremendous and crucial boost to the IFD program.

“The global scale of transformation required by climate change involves a revolutionary change in our lifestyles, behaviour, discipline, and thinking,” said DENR Secretary Ramon Paje.

“Climate change requires a concerted global action, and it is vital that Filipinos contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases and the promotion of values that enhance natural ecosystems,” declared Bishop Noel Pantoja of PCEC.

By Dexter A. See

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