Who’s the greenest candidate? #PHVote #LuntiangBayan2016
April 16, 2016
Do you want to know who among the candidates is for the welfare of animals, people, and the environment? Luntiang Bayan is a network of animal welfare and environmental organizations who believe that the environment is an important national issue and have come together to know the platform and evaluate the environmental track record of candidates vying for elective office.
To unite advocates coming from different environmental and people’s organizations to pursue the environmental agenda of the people and forward this to the political candidates for elective positions in the May 2016 polls.
Get to know the track record, position and platforms of the different national candidates on environmental and animal welfare issues that affect the Filipino people
To launch a public environmental forum for the benefit of the general public, and the electorate
To educate the public on environmental issues affecting their food, health, safety and economic well-being
SEARCH FOR ENVIRONMENTAL LEADERS
It is clear that the Philippines needs political leaders who have track records in environmental advocacy and can forward platforms of governance that can reverse environmental destruction, rehabilitate and protect the environment, utilize the resources of its country for the genuine development of its people.
These leaders must have a clear development program for the Philippines while respecting the rights of grassroots communities.
The country needs leaders who value National Patrimony and can lead the country towards an independent and self-reliant economy. A leader who will work for peace based on justice, practice good governance, and respect for ecological integrity.Such leaders can help bring about a just, peaceful and sustainable society.
7-POINT ENVIRONMENTAL AGENDA
Scope and Limitations
Luntiang Bayan surveyed all national candidates for President, Vice-President, and the first thirty senatorial candidates and first thirty partylists which were leading in the latest polls (SWS, Pulse Asia surveys).
Only the first thirty candidates for senators and partylists were considered for the Luntiang Bayan survey as they have statistically higher chances of being elected.
Luntiang Bayan surveyed the candidates through online research using the candidates’ websites, the online Library of Congress and Senate, online newspaper reports and social media.
Candidates were scored for each agenda (see seven-point agenda) based on their statements/ pronouncements (1 point); actual track record (2 points); and were given special points for consistency (3 points).
Statement by the Earth Island Institute Philippines
Luntiang Bayan is convened by Earth Island Institute Philippines, Nilad, Miriam College-Environmental Studies Institute (MC-ESI), Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), Save Philippine Seas (SPS), Wild Bird Club of the Philippines, Ecowaste Coalition, PIGLAS, Save Freedom Island Movement, Pull Out COALition, Save Laguna Lake Movement, UP Green League, Miriam Environmental Planning Organization – MEPOrg, Minggan – UP Manila, Minggan – UP Diliman.
Luntiang Bayan is an initiative that seeks to evaluate how green the electoral platform are of those running for office. Posted below are materials from our press briefing last APRIL 21 at the Miriam P.E.A.C.E. Center.
For the party-list race, the leading groups with consistent pro- environment record are Bayan Muna, Anakpawis, Gabriela, Butil, and ACT Teachers. For the senatorial candidates, the top four ‘green’ bets are Migz Zubiri, Neri Colmenares, Kiko Pangilinan, and Ralph Recto.
Chiz is greenest VP. Senator Chiz Escudero scored highest among the vice presidentiables. He is followed by his fellow senator, Gringo Honasan. Escudero and Honasan scored high on animal welfare and climate change adaptation. Escudero scored the highest on environment justice because of his statements on the dumping of Canadian trash, the rehabilitation efforts in Yolanda-affected areas, and support for farmers who are suffering from the El Nino weather phenomenon.
Like Poe, Rep. Leni Robredo is only serving her first term in Congress which partly explains why she had fewer legislative proposals compared to other vice presidential candidates. But Robredo topped the category on food security, reflecting her advocacy work in the agricultural sector.
Miriam Santiago is the most consistent ‘green’ candidate. Senator Miriam Santiago is the most consistent candidate in terms of environment advocacy. She topped all categories of the 7-point agenda because of her pro-environment legislative output and public statements that raise attention about the need to reverse the rapid deterioration of our fragile ecosystem.
Meanwhile, other presidential and vice presidential candidates have a mixed record in promoting environmental protection. Most of them claim to be in favor of the environment but they either fail to back their statements with concrete actions or they lack a comprehensive grasp of the environmental issues facing the country.
Among the presidentiables, Duterte placed second mainly because of several ordinances passed by Davao City banning large-scale mining and aerial spraying in plantations. But Duterte was given a negative rating on animal welfare because of his adverse position regarding the Animal Welfare Act.
Senator Grace Poe didn’t receive a negative rating but her score is good enough to land her on third place behind Santiago and Duterte. Perhaps she had fewer output to demonstrate her ‘green’ commitment since she only became a senator three years ago.
The low ranking of Senator Mar Roxas, who is the candidate of the ruling party, is reflective of his support to various ‘dirty’ programs of the incumbent government such as the building of coal plants and expansion of destructive mining operations.