President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday decried how the Philippines had been suffering the effects of climate change and demanded “rich” countries pay the country for pollution damage.

“The Philippines is located in the tropical zone. Ang ating bayan is the window na galing Pacific. If there is a warming of climate there with the mixture of the cold and hot temperatures, ayan tinatamaan tayo. At tayo talaga ang nagbabayad nang malaki, parang ‘yung resulta ng mga pollution ng ibang countries tayo ang sumasalo,” Duterte said in his “Talk to the People” address.

“Pagdating sa damage tayo rin ang pinakakawawa. Simply because we are situated dito nga, we are facing the Pacific Ocean at pagpasok niyan tayo ang — tayo ang bintana. We are the window of the entire eastern Asia,” he added.

Duterte said wealthy nations should pay the Philippines and find ways to address climate change.

“Dapat ang mga mayaman na hindi tinatamaan ng destruction caused by itong pollution, bayaran nila tayo for the damage,” he said.

“Iyong damage natin mas malaki tapos maliit ang ating contribution doon sa climate change. Iyan ang isang problemang kaharapin ng Pilipinas for the next generations to come,” he added.

The president claimed that if climate change remained unaddressed in the coming years, Filipinos’ lives would become more difficult.

“We average something like 20 typhoons a year, malaki tapos maliit […] But sabi ng mga weatherman pinakamahina ‘yang 20 lalo na […] with the advent of climate change,” he said.

The southern part of the Philippines was recently hit by typhoon “Agaton,” which caused 172 deaths and almost P250 million in agriculture damage and PP7 million in infrastructure damage. John Ezekiel J. Hirro