The chair of Senate Committee on Climate Change Senator Loren Legarda today hailed the passage of the People’s Survival Fund (PSF) Bill on third and final reading. The PSF is a special trust fund for the financing of adaptation programs and projects based on the National Strategic Framework on Climate Change.
“The PSF bill will help achieve the objectives of the Climate Change Act of 2009 by providing funds to local governments and communities to support their adaptation activities,” said Legarda.
Legarda explained that the climate law was crafted to ensure the consideration of climate change impacts such as stronger typhoons, heavier rains, prolonged drought and other effects in the formulation of government plans and programs.
“The Committee on Climate Change, drawing from the expertise of Senate President Enrile on public finance, proposes to strengthen our climate change policy with a complementing policy on climate finance. This will bring into fruition our climate change strategies, plans, and programs in ways that will allow us to tailor these within the context of local, community-based realities,” Legarda stressed.
The amount of one billion pesos shall be appropriated annually for the PSF under the General Appropriations Act.
“This fund shall be used to support local governments’ adaptation activities, such as in the areas of land and water resources management, agriculture and fisheries, health, infrastructure development, and natural ecosystems,” Legarda said.
“This will also support the improvement of the monitoring, controlling and prevention of diseases triggered by climate change; establishment of forecasting and early warning systems; and strengthening institutional development, for local governments, for preventive measures, planning, preparedness and management of impacts relating to climate change,” she added.
The Fund will be managed by the People’s Survival Fund Board, under the Commission on Climate Change, which will also approve project proposals submitted by local government units and community-based institutions for funding.
This PSF Board shall be composed of the Secretary of the Department of Finance as chair, Vice-chairperson of the Commission on Climate Change, Secretary of the Department of Budget and Management, Director-General of the National Economic and Development Authority, Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government, a representative from the academe and scientific community, a representative from the business sector, and a representative from the NGOs, to provide overall strategic guidance in the management and use of the fund.
“Localities are at the frontline of the climate crisis. The proposed People’s Survival Fund can be tapped by local governments in order to make their localities resilient to the worsening impacts of climate change,” Legarda concluded.***