• Stop Easter Wish BALLOON Release of 'Christ, King of the Universe' Parish!
    GOD made us, humans, to take care of all HE has created. With this kind of event, are we taking care of our only home? Genesis 2:15 NIV The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. During a mass last Palm Sunday, 'Christ, King of the Universe Parish' (https://web.facebook.com/CKUParish/ ) announced that they will conduct a balloon release with wishes this Easter Sunday. All of these balloons, once released, will end up as waste in landfills and other areas which will harm wildlife, marine and terrestrial ecosystems and even clog sewage systems, among others.
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  • PH Need to Call for UN Climate Action
    Philippines is suffering from the climate crisis. The youth seeks for the support of the Department of Foreign Affairs to let their story be heard in the International Court of Justice. Such an opinion will assist Philippines, and other countries, in understanding their legal duties regarding climate change impacts. Last year the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change released a special report (http://bit.ly/reportIPCC) stating that global change needs to happen before 2030 if the planet is going to reverse the impacts of climate change. We are hatching a global legal adventure. The 'I am Climate Justice Movement', sparked by the youth of the world wishes for us to be the change that we want to see. First, please make a Pledge (http://bit.ly/ICJMypledge) to take simple steps for personal change. When we have changed inside, we will ask for change outside. We are asking governments around the world, including the Philippines, to support a UN Resolution at the UN General Assembly in September this year triggering an International Court of Justice Advisory Opinion on the duty of States in light of the climate crisis. Such an opinion will assist Philippines, and other countries, in understanding their legal duties regarding climate change impacts. Our first step will be sending a letter (http://bit.ly/DFAletter) to the Department of Foreign Affairs on April 22 asking for their support. On June 5, World Environment Day, we will refile the letter, attached with the signature of the youth from other countries. We will continue to gather support until the UN General Assembly in September! Please join us in our legal fun and support this petition!
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  • Mainstream Refilling
    A five-year waste audit by the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) estimates the Philippines throws away 163 million sachets everyday. 79% of “branded” plastic waste comes from food packaging, 12% from household and 8% from personal care products. Plastics can remain for 2,000 years or longer in our natural environment. If we continue business as usual, by 2050 there could be more plastic than fish in the sea by weight. Because it is produced from petroleum-based chemicals, it could account for one-fifth of the world’s total oil consumption, further accelerating global warming and deadly climate change. Government policy can be a decisive driving force for widespread transformation. The FDA Philippines safeguards public health by ensuring the safety and efficacy of food, medicine, household and cosmetics products. With the support of key government agencies such as the Environmental Management Bureau and the Department of Trade and Industry, the FDA is in a unique and powerful position to influence and transform the usage of plastic at the source through the thousands of brands it regulates. We envision that the presence of safe, appropriately regulated cosmetics and home care refilling stations that are as accessible as water refilling stations will spark a radical change in the way people and organizations consume goods and manage plastic waste. An Illinois case study showed that a single mobile water refilling station saved the equivalent of 99,000 12-ounce plastic bottles a year. In order for this transformation to take place, we raise the following three opportunities to enhance the implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act No. 9711 - The Food and Drug Administration Act of 2009: FIRST: Instead of classifying refilling activities under “filling”, a manufacturing activity under AO 2016-0003 (Guidelines on the Unified Licensing Requirements and Procedures of the FDA) and Good Manufacturing Practices, we propose that a new, separate classification be developed such as “Refilling/Repacking Stations” within a retail outlet similar to how RONPD (Retail Outlets for Non-Prescription Drugs) were developed. SECOND: To fulfill the FDA requirement of protecting consumers’ health, we propose these Refilling/Repacking Station requirements: 1. Business permit 2. Sanitary permit 3. Products (cosmetics and household) for refilling must be FDA-notified 4. Authorized refilling representative trained and certified by the company to conduct safe and sanitary refilling (patterned after food establishments’ safety compliance officer) and not necessarily a pharmacist or a graduate of an allied science profession. 5. Refilling procedures to ensure the safety of refilling 6. Flat rate fee for the refilling License to Operate similar to government agencies such as Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), and not based on business capital. THIRD: If the packaging to be used is the emptied product bottle, the minimum mandatory information is already in the label. The Batch No. and Expiration Date will be stamped on the label for every refill. If the packaging to be refilled will be different from the emptied product bottle, the existing minimum mandatory requirement should be displayed on the Refilling/Repacking Stations for the consumers’ information. We propose that the following be stamped/stickered on the label for every refill: 1. Product Name 2. Batch No. 3. Expiration Date 4. Special precautions to be observed (if applicable) With this proposal, we seek to bridge the policy gaps and promote a sea change in the way responsible Filipino companies and ordinary citizens use plastics - not just temporary measures, but permanent and lasting policies, structures and systems. We hope to prepare the way for more brands to become better stewards of our earth and of human health. Join our push for safe, sustainable, widely accessible refilling stations of daily household and cosmetics products! Read the full text of the petition at bit.ly/mainstreamrefilling-pdf Signed: Anna Oposa, Co-founder & Executive Director, Save the Philippine Seas Anna Meloto-Wilk, Co-founder & President, Human Nature (Gandang Kalikasan Inc.) Sonia S. Mendoza, Chairman, Mother Earth Foundation Joel Palma, President/CEO, WWF Philippines Abigail Lois P. Aguilar, Campaigner, Greenpeace Southeast Asia-Philippines Dr. AA Yaptinchay, Executive Director, Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines Froilan Grate, Executive Director, GAIA Philippines/President, Mother Earth Foundation Sef Alba Carandang, Trustee & Vice President for Community Development, Philippine Reef and Rainforest Conservation Foundation, Inc. Gregg Yan, Founder & Director, Best Alternatives Campaign Angelica Mata, Founder, Zero Waste Filipina Bryan Madera, Founder, Plastic Battle Jennifer Horn, Founder, MUNI Cultural Creatives, Inc. Bryan McClelland, Founder, Bambike (Bamb Ecological Technologies, Inc.) Melissa Yeung-Yap, Founder, Got Heart Foundation, Inc. Jose Dante Albao, Executive Director, Sea Waste Education to Eradicate Plastics Binggirl Clemente, President, LAHAT Community Empowerment, Inc. Rodne Galicha, Country Manager, Climate Reality Project
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  • STOP the FLOATING LANTERNS of VENICE GRAND CANAL MALL!
    Floating lanterns represent the unsustainable, wasteful and ecologically apathetic practices that have led to environmental degradation. Despite possible claims of being biodegradable, parts of floating lanterns can actually take more than one year to degrade. The organizers may say that they will collect and recycle the lanterns but there are other ways to protect the planet and support the global movement against climate change: use renewable energy to power their facilities and buildings, grow trees and adapt forests/protected areas, and many others. And yet corporate groups like the management of the Venice Grand Canal Mall continue to neglect proper conduct in support of environmental protection in exchange for more profits. Furthermore, this must serve as a warning to us that some of these organizations will even use the noble causes of climate action and environmental protection as part of their agenda to simply make more money. If McKinley Hill is truly serious about supporting climate action and environmental protection, it should start by making sure that no lanterns will float on Earth Hour, 30 March.
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  • McDonald's: Prioritize Sustainability Now!
    As the biggest fast food chain in the world with 37,000 restaurants and 69 million customers each day, McDonald’s uses “nearly 2.8 tonnes of packaging every minute, representing nearly 1.5 million tonnes of packaging per year” according to Resource. Packaging is perhaps their most pressing issue. McDonald's continues to produce thousands and thousands of tons of solid wastes periodically. Not to mention, the emitted millions of metric tons of greenhouse gases from the production, transportation, and waste management of their packaging. Sources: 1. https://www.qsrmagazine.com/sustainability/how-mcdonalds-plans-fight-climate-change 2. https://resource.co/article/mcdonald-s-recycling-and-waste-management-insufficient-says-french-report-11870 Please read this Open Letter for McDonald's: https://wp.me/p6weqS-19c
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  • Clear Seas and Skies Albay
    As the universal law of gravity states, what comes up must go down. Recently, the province of Albay has been growing into the trend of releasing sky lanterns and balloons in special events (such as the most recent one held last February 13, 2019 at Legazpi City Albay). Although the activity could look beautiful for a moment, the mess it leaves can last decades affecting us and the environment around us. Albay is home to hundreds of beautiful creatures and is also declared as a UNESCO biosphere reserve, joining a list of areas around the world that are prime examples of sustainable development and biodiversity, however with our current practices, we could lose this beautiful area to pollution. For more information on the harmful effects of the release of lanterns and balloons, check out (https://www.facebook.com/105848482838036/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1318238384932367) Help us convince our officials to ban the release of sky lanterns and balloons in Albay and save what we (and the other creatures living in Albay) call "home".
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  • Stop Dolphin and Sea Lion shows in Cebu Ocean Park
    Why is it important? Their enslavement should not be our entertainment. Cebu is a beautiful island with rich marine biodiversity. It is always good to enjoy Cebu by visiting sustainable and eco-friendly sites and not going to places where they exploit marine species for entertainment. These animals, once they are in captivity, can affect their behaviours - both physically and physiologically that can put their well-being at risk. And this is what the proposed dolphin and sea lions shows in Cebu Ocean Park will do to our marine friends - they will be held captive and enslaved for entertainment and profit. These animals should not be made to perform or forced to provide rides or handling by visitors. We call on the government to ensure that there won't be any Threatened and protected species going into this facility. We should show compassion and love for these voiceless animals. They deserve the right to be in the wild. The Philippines is one of the best tourist destinations in the world because of its marine biodiversity and natural beauty. The last thing we need is another dolphin and sea lion show.
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  • STOP CEBU's La Vie in the Sky Skylanterns Release
    "I would like us all to make a serious commitment to respect and protect creation, to be attentive to every person, to counter the culture of waste and disposable, to promote a culture of solidarity and of encounter. Thank you." - Pope Francis. General Audience June 5th, 2013 "This same “use and throw away” logic generates so much waste, because of the disordered desire to consume more than what is really necessary." - Pope Francis (Laudato Si, 123) This activity is INTENTIONAL VIOLATION of Republic Act 9003 - mismanagement and improper segregation of waste. Likewise, of the fisheries code and wildlife act, among others. 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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  • STOP COVE MANILA'S BALLOON DROP
    It is unsustainable, wasteful and ecologically apathetic. Cove Manila said that the balloon drop will be done indoors and will follow waste disposal guidelines but the activity in itself contradicts the basic principles of environmental sustainability. 1. All of these balloons, if not recycled, will end up as waste in landfills and other areas which will harm wildlife, marine and terrestrial ecosystems and even clog sewage systems, among others. 2. The Philippines is 3rd in the world dumping wastes into the oceans. Don't add more. 3. There are environment-friendly alternatives, read here: https://balloonsblow.org/environmentally-friendly-alternatives. Need more reference? Download Save Philippine Seas Defying Gravity Toolkit at http://www.savephilippineseas.org/toolkits Let's look reflect on the words of econetizen Grayson Gil Lidon Yañez: "Dear Cove Manila, we know this event sounds like a blast in time for the new year but we’ve never been this challenged with plastic pollution than ever before. 130,000 is a massive number of balloons and trash that could flow to the oceans in due time. We hope you reconsider your choice of material for your celebration and we would gladly help you think of more environmentally-friendly yet still fun ways to usher in the new year... We understand that it will be done indoors and that you comply with waste disposal rules. But wouldn’t it be wiser, more cost-efficient, and sustainable to prevent at source? And by this we mean completely refraining from using balloons instead. It’s 130,000 plastic/rubber balloons we are talking about here — at a single event. Chances are it will still be dumped in sites or eventually end up in the oceans. Hope you will still reconsider and help us take action in taking care of our environment. There are many ways to celebrate and have fun, but not at the expense of the environment. And again, we will gladly help you think of other ways..." Econetizen Edgar Alan Zeta-Yap adds: "Despite repeated calls by netizens this past week to find an eco-friendly alternative to their extremely wasteful event, Cove Manila of Okada Manila continues to defend their ”record-breaking” release of 130,000 balloons at their New Year’s Eve party, sponsored by Hennessy and Belvedere Vodka. Justifying that the world’s largest balloon drop will be held indoors and that proper waste disposal will be followed, they totally miss the point as the country — and the entire planet — suffers from plastic pollution on a monumental scale as it is. More than 80% of plastic waste in the country is mismanaged, and often ends up in the ocean. And the Philippines is already the world’s third largest contributor to plastic pollution in the ocean."
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  • Stop the field trial and impending direct use of Golden Rice!
    Golden Rice: A Narrow View in Addressing Malnutrition Golden Rice, a rice variety that is genetically modified to produce Vitamin A, is touted as a solution to Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) in the Philippines. However, Golden Rice will only bring more problems to health, environment and farmers rights. Here’s how: • Rice, the staple food of Filipinos, will be subjected to unsafe genetic modification • Golden Rice is a concern of everyone; if something unexpected turns out in the process of genetic engineering the consequences would be catastrophic. Golden Rice proponents will subject the Filipinos’ staple food to a technology that is not proven to be safe, more so effective. Genetic modification alters the original genetic make-up of the organism, producing new chemical products that can have negative, unintended and uncontrolled consequences. GE crops can pose harm to those who will eat it, proof of which are the numerous peer-reviewed studies stating that GE crops are unsafe to eat. • It will be nearly impossible to recall GMOs as they are capable of reproduction. GMOs contaminate our food and agriculture thru cross pollination, seed mixing or thru accidental or intentional releases. Our rice varieties, totaling to about 4,000 varieties whose genetic diversity can be tapped to combat climate stresses and alleviate nutritional problems, are at risk of contamination. • Golden Rice does not offer new solutions. Beta carotene, which Golden Rice promises to deliver, is a nutrient that exists naturally in many food crops. It is present in crops in quantities greater than Golden Rice, such as malunggay, kalabasa, saluyot, kamote, carrots and other green leafy vegetables and yellow colored fruits and root crops. While widely available, easily grown and contains more beta carotene than Golden Rice, poverty hinders the Filipino people access to these safe and nutritious foods. Add to this the absence of fats in their diets required for the absorption of Vitamin A. • VAD exists among the population, but there are existing and proven steps in curbing Vitamin A deficiency. These interventions include fortification of food and Vitamin A supplementation by the Department of Health (DOH) of the Philippines. To date, the percentage of children aged 0-5 years with VAD have already went down to about 15% in 2008, mainly from these interventions. Same goes in the case of pregnant and lactating mothers, wherein the cases of VAD also dropped within the threshold level. • Golden Rice undermines food safety, health of the environment and farmers rights • Consumer rights to information and food safety is being put at the wayside, such as the absence of labels in foods containing GMOs. The pro-Golden Rice also group ignores safety tests, and to date no tests were conducted to ascertain safety of Golden Rice. Children’s’ rights were also disregarded, as was seen in the case of the secretive and illegal Golden Rice feeding trials to young Chinese children. • There are also no studies on allergenicity and toxicity of Golden Rice, which should be first established in animal feeding trials before feeding trials on humans commence. It is shameful that the pro-GR camp will subject communities in the Philippines, which will target children, to be used as experimental rats in the feeding trials to ascertain efficacy of Golden Rice. • Questions are also being raised about Golden Rice’s role in curbing VAD. Is Golden Rice a food or a drug? If it is a drug that will cure VAD, proper dosaging of Golden Rice should be implemented and regulated, which will deem it very impractical and may pose problems such as overdosing due to overconsumption. • The pro-GR camp is using victims – the children suffering from VAD - as leverage to rush the approval of the said crop. They have also held groups against the introduction of Golden Rice responsible for the death of children suffering from VAD. These claims are baseless, as Golden Rice is still not ready for release and no proofs of its effectivity in addressing VAD were presented. IRRI, the lead proponent in the development of Golden Rice, divulged that the yield of Golden Rice is very low and would take another two years before it will be ready for cultivation. • The regulatory agencies in the country are lax and pro-GMO. To date, there is also no single law that governs GM commercialization or protection of the people from unwanted effects brought about by GM crops. • Golden Rice will ensure corporate control in agriculture • Golden Rice is a product of private corporations using the public institutions to mask their intent in controlling food and agriculture. Golden Rice is a property of Syngenta, one of the biggest Agrochemical TNC in the world. Syngenta has partnered with IRRI and created the Golden Rice Human.
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  • No To Petron Depot in Pongol Balogo Pasacao Camarines Sur
    Balogo Pasacao Camarines Sur is known as one of the key player of tourism in "the summer capital of camarines sur" Pasacao, knowing that this is a tourist area putting up an oil depot that covers 2.6hctrs of land and a massive port of 800meters that could handle both inter island and international vessels would not only stop the tourism but would also Destruct the marine life, Farmers life, and the crystal clear waters of these beaches.
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  • ONE MILLION SIGNATURES FOR THE FUTURE: No to Manila Bay Reclamation, No to Bulacan Aerotropolis
    Salus populi est suprema lex! The welfare of the people is the supreme law ! This is the moment for the one million signatures for the defense of our ecosystems and habitats! One million voice to say NO to Manila Bay Reclamation, NO to Bulacan Aerotropolis and NO to worse flooding! YES to pro-environment and pro-development model that upholds quality life for the greater majority! The NAIA lockdown in August this year, however an isolated incident, was played up and what ensued were seemingly orchestrated efforts from government and business interest groups to speed up the final approval of San Miguel Corporation’s New Manila International Airport. Despite prospects for NAIA rehabilitation, and the expansion of the Clark International Airport to address air gateway woes, however at less cost and less toll for the environment, in all indications, in as far as the Bulacan Provincial Government and Bulakan town’s local authorities are concerned, it’s all systems go for the proposed P735B worth Aerotropolis in Taliptip, Bulakan, Bulacan. The game changer, as tagged by one of SMC bigwigs, the Bulacan Aerotropolis is a multimodal facility, with a mega airport, seaport, industrial and commercial complex, residential and entertainment hubs, which shall sit on a 2500 hectare expanse on the coastal area of Taliptip. Weeks before it was approved by the NEDA Board chaired by President Duterte in April 2018, hundreds of mangrove trees have been cleared in “SMC-acquired” coastal waters, allegedly initiated by SMC men. Interestingly, a DENR representative revealed, the whole of Taliptip coastal side is classified as timberland, is non-disposable and inalienable, and may only be used for aquaculture. Monsoon surges and heavy rains in August have submerged surrounding communities and towns for a number of days. “Wala pa ang airport nyan”, as observed by most of the affected residents. While the proponent obscures reclamation as the base for the implementation of its project, a San Miguel Holdings Corporation’s executive disclosed that recognizing their host province as perennially flood-prone, they are ready to spend for flood mitigating infrastructures as spillways and dams, “if necessary”. Spillways and dams? For whose gain and whose loss ultimately? Development for whom, and at what expense? Though yet under procedural process, displacement of hundreds of families in Taliptip’s influence communities is impending, and nothing is certain but the mere “promise” of a relocation site. Scientists assert reclamation’s disastrous impact on the environment compounded with social and cultural implications: deforestation, loss of biodiversity, food insecurity, prolonged massive flooding, liquefaction and soil subsidence, storm and monsoon surges along coastal villages ,among others, adversely affecting the vulnerable sectors of society. As advocates for the defense of livelihood, communities and the environment, we are urgently called to band together to form the broadest network to oppose this gigantic profit-driven development project! Let us come forward by the thousands of voices, by a million hands and feet marching to signify our collective stand. Tell the government we are for development, so long as it includes us. Please affix your signature below and make history!
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