UNDP taps acclaimed Science Diplomat for BARMM climate security program

by Admin-Phmp

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has just tapped internationally-acclaimed Filipino climate expert and science diplomat Glenn Banaguas to spearhead climate security risk and vulnerability assessment of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

The UNDP Philippines’ Climate Security Project within the BARMM has the overarching objective of enhancing resilience in the affected communities; building regional, provincial, and municipal capabilities for dealing with climate-related security risks; and ensuring that local governments can finance these initiatives in order to move forward.

Specific objectives include:

· Examining the interaction of climate change and natural disasters with factors (social, economic, political) that impact the peace and security situation in the region;

· Analyzing climate change impacts as key drivers for social, economic, and political risks and vulnerabilities in the BARMM;

· Evaluating peace and security risks arising from the direct and indirect effects of climate, taking into consideration climate stressors or shocks, exposure, vulnerability, and coping capacity;

· Assessing the potential magnitude and impacts of extreme climate-related events through the classification of hotspots for climate change exposure and vulnerability that intersect with conflict and violence;

· Examining how intersecting factors (e.g., gender, age, socio-economic status, race, ethnicity, and disability) potentially leave some groups disproportionately exposed to climate-related security risks;

· Identifying potential gaps and entry points towards advocacy and capacity-building for the integration of climate security considerations into local resilience planning and budgeting processes.

“This initiative is unique in that it also takes into account key social factors in addition to the usual metrics. We are aiming for a more holistic and customized approach to the BARMM,” Banaguas explained.

“This project will help every stakeholder understand how climate change, security and peacebuilding interact while highlighting the peace dividends offered by climate adaptation and mitigation efforts and disaster resilience mechanisms. It will also advance peace-positive climate action, catalyze climate-informed approaches to peace and security, and forge partnerships with all the stakeholders to exchange information and create science and evidence-based solutions,” Banaguas added.

“I pray that this project will continue to amplify peace in the hearts of our brothers and sisters to build united communities in the region,” Banaguas concluded.

This UNDP initiative builds on Sci. Dpl. Banaguas’ previous work on Climate Smart Bangsamoro in 2020 with the support from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MENRE) and through Climate Smart Mindanao 2050, which was renewed in 2022 in partnership with the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) as a way to help the region to reduce its carbon footprint and empower its people to proactively assess and manage its climate risks.

Sci. Dpl. Banaguas’ pioneering environmental work earned him the prestigious UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Risk Reduction in 2022, the first individual Filipino recipient in the award’s 35-year history. (PR)

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