Climate change may well be humanity’s greatest challenge. It is a crisis that must be rapidly addressed if catastrophe is to be averted. Already, the impacts are being felt by millions in the world’s most vulnerable states and marginalized sectors.
The Philippines has been identified as one of, if not the most, vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change. The extent of the destruction caused by 2012 typhoon Pablo (Bopha) and 2011 typhoon Sendong (Washi) are directly and indirectly caused and worsened by logging and mining. The recent manifestation to this is the onslaught of El Niño that led to the human and food security conflict in Kidapawan, Cotabato Province between the local government and the local farmers demanding for food and aid. The farmers and fisher folks in Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Del Norte suffered the dry spell of El Nino as crops failed to produce while fish catch reduced dramatically. The decrease of water level in Lanao Lake and Pulangi River also disrupted the regular power generation of Agus-Pulangi Hydro-Power.
Among those aggravated by large-scale mining, logging, and coal-fired power plants include a rapid increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide, increased morbidity and mortality incidences, environmental degradation and loss of biodiversity, contamination of aquifers and water stress, displacement of communities and development aggression in ancestral domain lands.
In response to perpetrators of the ecological crisis, the Liga ng Makabagong Kabataan- Zamboanga Peninsula organized a Climate Walk: A Sobriety calls for Climate Justice from Begong Tigbao, Limas to Maragang Lake last July 15 and 16. The walk served as a local counterpart of the 92-KM Climate Walk organized by Coal Resistance Movement (CoRE) last July 19 to 25, 2015.
As part of the Campaign for Climate Justice and Sustainable Development, LMK Zampen celebrates the invaluable involvement and vital role of young people in demanding Climate Justice. The organization also stresses the enormous role of the youth to contest and understand the root causes of climate change. The imperative action needed to avert climate change should be based on grassroots-led solutions for the well-being of local communities. The youth understands that the only way to prevent climate change is to change the neo liberal agenda of the government, a corporate-based economy, which stops us from achieving sustainable development and just society.
“What we are facing now served as a great challenge and inspiration to every youth, the future defender of our country that we need to step up our efforts and exercise the power of a collective action to defy the crooked minds of our government”, said Renz Gahum, Secretary General of Alyansa ng Kabataang Mindanao Para sa Kapayapaan (AKMK), which LMK is a proud member of.
Liga ng Makabagong Kabataan Zampen, along with other organizations in Mindanao seeks for Climate Justice Now! LMK Zampen Youth calls: NO TO COAL POWER PLANTS! NO TO MINING! NO TO ILLEGAL LOGGING! Perpetrators of climate crisis must pay!
Kabataan! Lumaban! Manindigan Kumilos!