Mediating Climate Change for a Sustainable Tomorrow
Climate change is real. Climate change is changing the world in more ways than one, and the Philippines is highly vulnerable to its effects. A tropical island nation lying in the typhoon path, a biodiversity hotspot and a developing agricultural nation at that, the Philippines is indeed in a peculiar situation.
Despite predictions of horror stories, climate change also offers opportunities. How we grab these opportunities is, of course, up to us. It is, without doubt, a governance issue. Drawing our pathways to mitigating and adapting, especially the latter, to what climate change might bring about conjures conflicts at every level of engagement, from the community to the national and to the global.
This issue of The Mediator takes a look at these conflict areas and explores ways of addressing them. Our guest writers and resource persons featured in this issue share with us their invaluable insights on gathered from years, even decades, of engagement in climate change issues. We give special thanks to Dean Tony La Viña for sharing with us his journey as a climate mediator at community, national and international arenas.
It also behooves to note that the application of mediation is gaining ground in the government bureaucracy. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources' Land Management Bureau and the Department of Justice's National Prosecution Service are at the frontline of this development, and MedNet is pleased to be of service in this regard. For the DENR-LMB, MedNet rolled out the training of DENR's ADR Officers to test the effectiveness of the ADR Manual of Operations. Meanwhile, the DOJ just issued a Department Circular mandating public prosecutors to use mediation in specific cases. Training of prosecutors on mediation is being piloted in which two MedNet members serve as trainers.
We also take this opportunity to congratulate Prof. Miriam Coronel-Ferrer, peacebuilder par excellence, for winning the 2023 Ramon Magsaysay Awards. We also celebrate the life of Ms. Caroliza Tulod-Peteros, former MedNet Executive Director, who recently passed on.