Yolanda task force: Place sustainability at the heart of biz

Johanna O. Bajenting

REORIENT the way you do business and adapt sustainable practices to protect the environment.

This was what Yolanda Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles urged the business community in Cebu in a speech delivered by lawyer and IAFT executive director Rod Herrero Pino, Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019.

“We must reorient our way of doing business to adapt and harness these changes in order to address real human needs and more importantly, place sustainability at the heart of our business strategy,” he said.

Nograles said the impact of climate change in the country is making the livelihood of farmers and fisherfolks suffer.

“Brought about by a warming Earth, climate change undermines the health of our ecosystem. Coral bleaching results to the loss of fish habitat and breeding grounds, which translate to less fish catch for our fishermen. It also disrupts our long-standing agricultural patterns, which contributes to failure of crops of our farmers and thus, contributing even more to the agony of our people most vulnerable to these changes,” he said.

He said realigning practices in the business would help alleviate phenomenons like the Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan).

“As Business for Social Responsibility put it, ‘If we are to avoid catastrophic climate change, build truly fair and inclusive economic growth and navigate a radically reshaped world, it is time for our business to change.’ We have within our grasp the ability to reorient business and turn the tide on climate change and deliver economic opportunity for the most number of people,” he said.

Around 120 individuals from the national government led by Nograles, local chief executives, representatives from Yolanda-affected areas, micro, small and medium enterprises, non-government offices, cooperatives, academe and the public gathered in a seminar dubbed, “Transforming Business for an Environmentally Sustainable Future.”

“Cebu is known for its natural ingenuity, admirable artistry, rich heritage, proud culture and more importantly its deep faith. All these intrinsic qualities are fully exhibited in the resilience and indomitable spirit of the Cebuanos, that time and again no calamity, be it Yolanda or Ruping, may dampen,” Nograles said.