In celebration of Earth Day (April 22), Senator Loren Legarda today urged Filipinos to make each day of the year an Earth Day, stressing that what we do every day to care for Mother Earth is what really counts.
“Earth Day is a great reminder to care for our nature and biodiversity, but it should not just be ceremonial. Caring for the environment should be an everyday practice. It should be a habit,” said Legarda, Chair of the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources.
“Proper solid waste management is one way we could help make our environment clean, safe and healthy. Every household should know how to properly manage their waste materials. That goes the same for every school, private and public offices, industrial and commercial establishments. Our barangay should lead and be responsible for the segregation of biodegradable, compostable and reusable waste, while the municipal or city government will collect the non-recyclable materials and special waste,” she explained.
World’s Worst Marine Polluters
The Senator also noted reports stating that the Philippines is third, following China and Indonesia, in the list of countries with the most plastic waste thrown into the ocean.
According to the study, Plastic waste inputs from land into the ocean, published in the journal Science, of the 275 million tons of plastic waste generated in 192 coastal countries in 2010, plastic debris entering the ocean was somewhere between 4.8 and 12.7 million metric tons.
“This should not be a problem if only we implement the Ecological Solid Waste Management Law. The protection of our oceans is crucial to our nation. We need our oceans to live. The degradation of marine ecosystems affects the livelihood of our coastal communities, our food supply, our tourism and our economy,” said Legarda.
Documentary on Coral Restoration
Last week, the Senator launched a video documentary, Antique: Coral Restoration Program, which highlights coral restoration efforts in the municipalities of Anini-y and Pandan in the Province of Antique.
“These programs have already brought significant gains in the communities of Pandan and Anini-y by addressing food security and improving the competitiveness of tourism. We need to support these coral restoration programs and strengthen community involvement in marine protection. This video documentary is part of my continuing advocacy to educate and enlighten Filipinos about marine life, how it affects our own life and livelihood, what is at stake if we lose these resources, and what we can and must do to protect our seas,” Legarda stressed.
The video documentary, which was produced by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), in partnership with the Office of Senator Loren Legarda, Philippine Information Agency (PIA) and Department of Science and Technology (DOST), was directed by Brillante Mendoza and features underwater videography and photography by members of the Network of Underwater Digital Imagers (NUDI)—Robert Suntay, Jan Acosta, Boogs Rosales and Wowie Wong.