Why Do Activists Want To Rename The Typhoon Wreaking Havoc In The Philippines?

Residents flee their homes amid fears of a storm surge in the wake of Typhoon Hagupit.

Typhoon Hagupit

In a country where people were already picking up the pieces left by Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda)one of the strongest ever to form on planet Earth – from last year, another tropical storm wreaked havoc in the Philippines on Sunday.

At least 21 people were reported dead, many of them drowned as flood waters rose in Borongan, the main town in Eastern Samar, where typhoon Hagupit (locally known as Ruby) made first landfall, according to the Philippine National Red Cross.

More than a million people were evacuated as the powerful typhoon approached the country from the Pacific, amid fears of the same devastation caused by Haiyan that left more than 7,000 dead or missing.

See Also: Here’s How You Can Help Typhoon Victims In The Philippines

Hagupit has reignited accusations that developing nations are paying with their lives because industrialized countries and energy corporations pollute the environment, which in turn causes climate change.

Following the Typhoon Haiyan last November, around 130 countries argued in the United Nations whether rich nations should compensate poor ones for climate-related losses.

This time around, environmental organization Greenpeace has launched an online campaign #RenameHagupit to rename Typhoon Hagupit after one of the world's 10 biggest polluters.

Currently, “Typhoon Chevron” named after the American multinational energy corporation is leading the poll on Twitter – since it tops the list of big polluters, contributing to 3.5 percent of historic global emissions.

"What we're trying to do is really beyond compensation, but getting [big polluters] to provide transition to renewable energy, especially for small island states and developing countries like the Philippines that are facing the impacts of climate change," said Greenpeace Philippines climate justice campaigner Anna Abad.

"We cannot adapt and refuse to adapt to all these typhoons and accept this as the new normal which is what they're saying and we want these big polluters to be responsible and transition and help us to transition to a low carbon future."

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Although Hagupit does not appear as severe as many had feared, it is still expected to bring dangerous flooding and landslides to several areas, especially low-lying capital city Manila.

"We have confirmed reports that 21 people died in Eastern Samar, 16 of them in Borongan," said Gwendolyn Pang, secretary-general of the Philippine National Red Cross.

Following are some photos and videos showing the destruction caused by Hagupit:

Typhoon Hagupit  

Typhoon Hagupit

Typhoon Hagupit  

Typhoon Hagupit  

Typhoon Hagupit