There are bigger battles outside the Paris Agreement

The climate talks, however, are still a legitimate venue to advance the concrete needs and aspirations of our people. President Duterte can take a leaf from the book of Bolivian President Evo Morales, who called out global capitalism as the root of the climate and environmental crises in his plenary speech at COP21 last year, or from Pope Francis who also called for system change with his encyclical "Laudato Sii."

At COP22, Duterte can take up the cudgels for the Filipino people struggling for climate justice, from the Lumad, Igorot, and other indigenous peoples resisting big coal and metallic mines to the Yolanda survivors that will march once again on "ground zero" come November 8 to assert their demands for resilient homes and livelihoods.

These are the bigger battles outside the Paris Agreement that need to be fought, as these are the ones winning the struggle against the global system that perpetuates climate injustice. Let these stories of struggles in the frontlines be at the core of the climate talks. –

Leon Dulce is the current campaign coordinator of the Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment (Kalikasan PNE), a national network of people’s organizations, NGOs and environmental advocates that was established in 1997 to address environmental issues which continue to worsen the lives of the Filipino people.