• Stop Legazpi City Flying Lantern Release
    1. What goes up must come down, and farmers in ­particular have become increasingly ­concerned that livestock might swallow a lantern's wire or ­bamboo frame, or, even worse, that fires might break out in hay barns. Elsewhere, coastguards say lanterns, which can travel for several kilometres and to an ­altitude of 1,000m before the candle burns out, are routinely mistaken for distress flares. A handful of east Asian countries, such as ­Vietnam, Malaysia and Thailand, have already introduced bans, particularly in the lead up to ­major festivals. (https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2010/feb/02/sky-lanterns-danger-farm-animals) 2. Countries like Argentina, Austria, Australia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, New Zealand, Spain, Germany, and parts of Canada and the USA have actually already banned the release of sky lanterns. (http://www.wheninmanila.com/why-we-should-not-release-balloons-skylanterns/). 3. However, the worst part of the fallout from the activity is the impact on local fauna. Reports of animals dying painfully, typically strangled by old lanterns' wires or suffocated by undecomposed paper, are frequent during this time of year. Some visitors are no doubt already aware of this, particularly following the high-profile death of an owl in the U.K. a few years ago. The bird was found suffocated and partly burnt inside the remains of a lantern... Humans are also at risk. The light emitted by lanterns sent en masse at night has been proven to be disruptive to aircraft pilots. As such, some countries like Malaysia have banned the use of sky lanterns in and around certain cities in order to prevent fatal accidents. (http://www.chinapost.com.tw/editorial/taiwan-issues/2017/02/10/491229/pingxis-sky.htm) 4. Though they are undoubtedly beautiful, even the biodegradable lanterns can be incredibly harmful to both the environment and wildlife. Sky lantern litter takes quite some time to decompose, and the wire frames have been known to strangle and maim wild animals and livestock. They also pose a significant fire hazard. Not only have they caused multiple wildfires, a sky lantern was also responsible for a massive fire at the Smethwick Recycling Plant in West Midlands, England. (http://earth911.com/living-well-being/events-entertainement/environmental-impact-traditions/) 5. With Save Philippine Seas, know more about the ills and harms of sky lantern releases here: https://www.facebook.com/pg/savephilippineseas/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1318238384932367
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  • Reappoint Gina Lopez as DENR Secretary
    Gina Lopez has been the only DENR secretary that has enforced our environmental laws without fear or hesitation. She has extensively visited and documented the environmental degradation of mine sites, watersheds, coastal areas, and forests, all over the country. She has comprehensively sought, listened and decisively acted on the complaints of affected communities. She is qualified to this position considering her knowledge of environmental issues and her previous experience managing development initiatives such as social enterprises, eco-tourism and the rehabilitation of the Pasig River. To ensure the continued advance for real change in your administration, Gina Lopez is imperative because: a) She can inspire people within the agency and the communities to commit towards a green economy; b) She has a solid history of being able to work with other government agencies local governments, and private sector and civil society groups to implement an integrated area development approach that is crucial to helping the poor; c) She can check and possibly end corruption in the DENR, as she herself has shown that she has zero tolerance for corruption; d) She can effectively communicate the environmental challenges we face, and inspire millions of citizens to address the issues they face at ground level. We realize that as President, you have to make choices and follow the law. But in the case of Gina Lopez, you yourself correctly recognized that powerful economic interests and corrupt politicians have obstructed your resolve to bring change to DENR. We must not allow this betrayal of the country, and the betrayal of our environment to remain unchecked. Mr. President, millions of Filipinos – especially the poor – are relying on your will to make the right decision. It is in this spirit that we, along with many of our fellow Filipino citizens, ask that Gina Lopez be re-appointed as DENR secretary.
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  • Rep. Ronald Zamora and Rep. Wes Gatchalian should inhibit from the CA confirmation hearing
    We need your help to tell Rep. Ronald Zamora and Rep. Wes Gatchalian that they should inhibit themselves from the deliberations of the CA. We also raise concern on the conflict of interest concerning Sens. Panfilo Lacson and Alan Peter Cayetano who received campaign support from the Zamoras. We believe that the objectivity of these members of the CA are compromised. Alyansa Tigil Mina has always been public with its call for reforms in the mining industry. However, in this case, we believe that the decision to confirm Sec. Lopez should not only be about her position on mining, but more importantly, on her competence and track record. Sec. Lopez is the only DENR appointee to show firmness in implementing environmental laws despite the lobby of business firms. The number of endorsements and statements of support from communities and civil society organizations submitted to the CA are proof of strong confidence in her track record and leadership. We strongly back her drive against corruption and support her vision of social and environmental justice for the welfare of the present and future generations. Sources: [1] http://www.nickelasia.com/about-us/board-directors-and-officers [2] http://www.wellex.com.ph/category/our-history/board-of-directors [3] http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/23/reuters-america-exclusive-philippines-allows-suspended-miners-to-ship-out-nickel-ore.html [4] http://www.rappler.com/nation/160270-denr-closes-mining-operations [5] http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/885169/lacson-having-second-thoughts-on-lopez-confirmation [6] http://www.rappler.com/nation/politics/elections-2013/31990-campaign-contributors-team-pnoy-2013-elections#cayetano
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  • ASEAN, ACT TO PROTECT THE OCEANS FROM PLASTIC AND MARINE DEBRIS!
    The ocean is drowning in plastic. The ocean is filled with 275 million tons of plastics. The cumulative quantity of plastic waste available to enter the ocean from land is predicted to increase by an order of magnitude by 2025, and is projected to outweigh fish in the ocean by 2050. A 2015 study named five ASEAN member states as the biggest sources of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans. These are: Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, and Malaysia. ASEAN countries, due to their lengthy coastlines and high plastic usage, are some of the primary sources of marine plastics globally. With the Philippines as chair of this year’s ASEAN Summit, this is an opportune time to call on the ASEAN member states to take concrete measures against plastics pollution in the high seas to stop environmental degradation and dwindling of marine life in the region. ASEAN needs to work together to set appropriate regulations and encourage businesses to take responsibility for their environmental impact and consumers to take action.
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