The Philippines and the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) will hold the 1st PH-German Consultation on Climate on Tuesday, April 18, marking the first time a high-level consultation between the two countries will be conducted which will focus on expanding their long-standing partnership on accelerating the two countries’ climate agenda both at the global and local levels.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Maria Antonia Loyzaga will head the Philippine side, while Jennifer Lee Morgan, State Secretary and Special Envoy for International Climate Policy at the Federal Foreign Office, will head Germany’s side with FRG Ambassador to the Philippines Anke Reiffenstuel and other senior German Embassy officials. Before the start of her official program, she stated:

“I came to the Philippines to see with my own eyes the devastation that is being wreaked by the climate crisis and to hear from the people of Tacloban who lost everything because of terrible climate intensified typhoons. Our climate consultations will enable me to listen, learn and discuss how we can deepen our bilateral collaboration and to help those who are hit hardest by the climate crisis. We must work together to contain the climate crisis. We want to work with the Philippines to develop a resilient, alternative development pathway that brings prosperity and a better life for all citizens. And to strive for a successful COP28 that drives ambition by the major emitters to keep the 1.5 degrees limit within sight, and shows solidarity with the most vulnerable people on earth.“

Loyzaga, on the other hand, will be joined by senior officials from the member-agencies of the Cabinet Cluster on Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Disaster Risk Reduction. “The Department’s role is to build the lifelines to the resources on land, and in the air and sea, that will ensure inclusive, resilient and sustainable development. In order to do this, we need to work with partners, such as the German government, to develop integrated strategies for a science-based, risk-informed, ethical and equitable stewardship of our environment,” Loyzaga said.

During the consultations, both governments will discuss ways and procedures to accelerate the implementation of German-funded environmental and climate programs aligned with Philippines’s priorities in order to strengthen its commitments to address the climate crisis on a global level, particularly the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), which binds the Philippines to attain an emission reduction or avoidance in its greenhouse gas (GHG) by 75 percent (2.71% is unconditional, and 72.29% is conditional), as part of the country’s commitment to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

Slated to be discussed is the prospects for expanding access to FRG’s International Climate Initiative (IKI) as the Philippines is a focus country of IKI, being one of the countries in the world most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and one of the world’s 17 megadiverse countries.
Agenda items will include critical climate and environmental issues of immediate global and national concerns such as are the Philippine’s environmental priority programs on water security, decarbonization of the Philippine economy through transitioning to renewable and sustainable energy in keeping with the country’s NDC target and the strengthening of the country’s climate adaptation and resilience building capacities as well as disaster risk reduction and management capacities. The discussions will also focus on operationalizing the loss and damage agenda, particularly building more resilience against the consequences of the climate crisis, about which State Secretary Jennifer Morgan was able to learn about first-hand during her field visit in Tacloban on Monday, April 17.

To date, the strong partnership between Germany and the Philippines is reflected in several IKI projects exceeding 63 million EUR in funding and covering projects on mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation to the impacts of climate change, conservation of natural carbon sinks with a focus on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+), and conservation of biodiversity.

The IKI is a funding program initiative for climate action and biodiversity conservation established in 2018 by the German government underlining its commitment to pledges in international climate finance. To date, more than 700 projects in over 120 countries are funded by IKI with around 3.9 billion EUR.###