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“Halina’t magtanim ng pagkain sa ating mga bakuran!”
Converting vancant lots to community gardens increase access to fresh food and improve food security. Photo from the presentation of Atty. JC Tejano of of Urban Green Communes. MANILA, 2 July 2021 — The 51st episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways” featured home and community food gardens from various areas in Metro Manila established during the beginning of lockdown, which helped bring a steady supply of nutritious food during the pandemic and in the better normal.   The online conversation conceptualized and hosted by three-term Senator, now Deputy Speaker and Antique Representative Loren Legarda, featured urban gardeners including Diding Libao of Inang Maria’s Garden in Payatas; Jeanny Flojimon and Letlet Casas of Food Today Food Tomorrow also in Payatas; Nicole Obligacion of Anyone Can Garden in Pasig City; and Atty. JC Tejano of Urban Green Communes in Quezon City.   The guests shared their experience of setting up and maintaining food gardens in their homes, backyards, and empty lots, including in lower-income neighborhoods, and encouraged households and communities to start their own edible gardens, even in small spaces, not only as a source of food, but also as a recreational activity during these challenging times.   Libao shared how the free seeds and nutritious harvests from Inang Maria’s Garden helped parishioners and families in Payatas during the height of the community quarantine due to the pandemic.   "Lahat po kami ay naka-survive dahil sa inisyatibo ng aming parokya. Malaking tulong po ang simbahan na nagsimula sa pagbigay ng punla, nakakatipid kami sa aming pamamalengke at masaya po ang aming samahan kasi dito po namin nilalabas ang stress sa buhay lalo na ngayong pandemic,” said Libao.   Flojimon and Casas, members of the Pinagkaisang Lakas ng Mamamayan ng Payatas, an organization that promotes the right of the urban poor to have decent work and food, shared how the residents themselves took the initiative to set up backyard and container gardens for a healthy supply of food, particularly vegetables.    Their group is one of the 20 urban grower groups who developed the ‘Food Today, Food Tomorrow’ project, and now organizes weekly ‘Kusinang Bayan’ in Payatas.   "Dito sa area, nag-inisyatibo ang mga mamamayan na kahit backyard lang ‘yan o kahit sa paso, pag ‘yan ay nataniman, malaking tulong na ito sa pang-araw-araw na pagkain, lalo na ngayon na mahal ang gulay kung bibilhin...kahit kaunting espasyo lang sa gilid ay mapagtatamnan na," said Flojimon and Casas.   Obligacion, who has been gardening since 2013 in the balcony of her condominium, spoke of how she teaches locals and foreigners tips on how to grow their own food through her online platform, ‘Anyone Can Garden.’   "Ang isa po talaga sa goals ko for Anyone Can Garden ay makapagbigay ng step-by-step tips or guide na madaling maintindihan at mai-apply. And to be honest kahit ako din po ay nai-intimidate ‘pag first time ko pa lang po itatanim ang halaman at first time aalagaan. May fear talaga na 'pano kung magkamali ako' o 'pano kung mapeste na naman ito' pero ang pinanghahawakan ko talaga ay ‘yung brand name na Anyone Can Garden," said Obligacion.   Atty. Tejano enumerated the environmental benefits and opportunities they saw while converting nearby empty lots.   "Habang naglilinis, naisip namin na taniman na ‘yung lote for two reasons: Una, para hindi na magtapon ulit ng basura doon sa bakanteng lote, kasi kapag mayroon nang tumutubo, mayroon nang gulayan, mayroon nang mga pananim doon sa bakanteng lote, mahihiya na ‘yung mga tao na basta na lang magtapon ng basura. Pangalawa, para maiwasan na magpunta ng palengke. Around the start of community quarantine ay paranoid ang mga tao na pumunta ng palengke para mamili," said Tejano, co-founder of Urban Green Communes, a group of more than 20 community gardens in Metro Manila.   During the pandemic, they transformed a vacant lot that was being used as a dump into a community garden. They envision to build similar gardens in every barangay in Metro Manila, where people grow and share food, take charge of urban life, take care of everyday health, and regenerate ecosystems.   Legarda, with co-host Atty. Ipat Luna, supported the initiatives of the urban gardeners and urged individuals to install their own food garden, even in small spaces, using recyclable materials, to ensure food availability and supply at home and in their communities, as well as the government to switch to giving plant kits and sustainable food as a way to provide assistance and support to the families reeling from the economic impacts of the pandemic.   “Sa panahon ng pandemic, sa panahon ng pagbibigay ng social amelioration, sana ay ibahin natin, itweak natin ang government programs. Huwag de lata mentality, sana isama din ang preskong tanim, preskong gulay, at isama ang buto, ang soil, at basic tools. 'Pag binigyan ng bigas at de lata, ilang araw lang ay gutom na naman ang pamilya. Pero 'pag binigyan natin ng starter kits sa urban gardening, tuluy-tuloy na ‘yan hanggang sa magkaroon sila ng gulayan at tindahan,” Legarda concluded.   As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized.   This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation.
July 02, 2021 Friday
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CCC, DILG urges LGUs to submit local climate action plans
MANILA, 1 July 2021 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) supports the call of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) for all local government units (LGUs) to submit their Local Climate Change Action Plans (LCCAPs) by the end of July 2021.   Republic Act No. 9729 mandates all LGUs, as frontline agencies in the formulation, planning, and implementation of climate change action plans, to increase the capacities of communities to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change.   With only 1,379 LGUs having submitted their LCCAPs, the DILG-Bureau of Local Government Development, in collaboration with the CCC, issued Memorandum Circular No. 2021-068 on 28 June 2021 enjoining all LGUs, as well as DILG offices, to update the CCC on the status of their LCCAPs.   Consistent with the provisions of RA 9729, the National Framework Strategy on Climate Change (NFSCC), the National Climate Change Action Plan (NCCAP), and the Local Government Code, the LCCAP will define the strategies of a community for strengthening local risk governance, enhancing rural livelihood, ensuring ecosystems integrity, and building cultural resilience.   Implementing LCCAPs will reduce disaster risks and will build the adaptive capacity and resilience of communities, especially the farmers, fisherfolk, and  informal settler families living in danger areas that are the most vulnerable sectors of society to climate change impacts.   As the Philippines is among the countries most vulnerable to climate risks, the national government, through the CCC and DILG, are committed to empower LGUs to adapt to the effects of climate change and reduce its greenhouse gas emissions through the rollout of capacity-building programs for enhanced LCCAPs.   Even in the midst of a pandemic, the CCC continuously delivers training for LGUs under its Communities for Resilience (CORE) Program, the agency’s flagship capacity building initiatives for local leaders and planners on mainstreaming climate change in local investment planning and processes.   Last year, the CCC successfully held a four-part Accelerated Climate Action and Transformation (ACT) Local Online Conference, an overarching partnership program for the delivery of its capacity building activities, to formalize a sustainable partnership among the national government, academe, and the private sector in providing technical and/or financial resources to LGUs on climate action.   Through ACT Local, relevant stakeholders were oriented on how to assist and contribute to efforts that will generate information, boost capacity development, promote cooperation and convergence, facilitate vertical and horizontal alignment for development planning, and access to climate financing windows toward climate resiliency.   For more information on the ACT Local and capacity building activities for LGUs, visit the website of the Climate Change Commission at climate.gov.ph. 
July 01, 2021 Thursday
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CCC on National Disaster Resilience Month: Prevention is always better than response
MANILA, 1 July 2021 — In observance of the National Disaster Resilience Month this July, the Climate Change Commission (CCC) calls for the shift from reactive efforts to proactive strategies in reducing disaster risks and strengthening the country’s defenses against natural hazards and anthropogenic climate change.   Executive Order no. 29 s. 2017 declares the month of July of every year as National Disaster Resilience Month, which emphasizes the need to understand disaster risk, investing in disaster risk reduction management, increasing disaster awareness programs, and enhancing community disaster preparedness for effective response.   This year’s theme, "Tamang Pamamahala't Kahandaan, Kaalaman at Pagtutulungan sa Sakuna at Pandemya'y Kalasag ng Bayan," focuses on the strengthening of disaster risk governance and the collaboration of all Filipinos to overcome the challenges of the pandemic and to build a green and resilient normal.   The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) recently officially declared the start of the rainy season. Due to our geographical location, an average of 20 tropical cyclones enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility every year, and most develop into typhoons. The worsening climate influences the intensity of these weather disturbances, therefore incurring more loss and damages to communities. With this, the Commission reminds the public to heighten disaster preparedness and undertake preventive measures to lessen the impact of natural hazards.   The climate body also encourages local governments to invest public resources wisely in long-term and improved urban planning and disaster risk reduction aligned with the latest climate science; and to lead and engage their respective cities, municipalities, and provinces in promoting a culture of safety and resilience engaging all stakeholders and sectors, raising awareness on disaster and climate risk at community and family level, and improving local early warning systems.   Individuals and communities can contribute to disaster preparedness simply by participating in the conduct of safety drills, knowing evacuation places and preparing emergency "go bags", dredging of canals and esteros, and segregating and recycling garbage, among many others.
July 01, 2021 Thursday
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CCC lauds Davao City’s ordinance on single-use plastics, cites growing momentum towards national ban
MANILA, 30 June 2021 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) lauded the Davao City Government on the signing of an ordinance banning single-use plastics in the city, citing the landmark ordinance as part of growing momentum towards a national ban.   “We laud the Davao City Government for enacting this much-needed ordinance which will help address the problem of plastic pollution and chart a more sustainable development path for Davao City,” said CCC Commissioner Rachel Herrera.   The “No to Single-Use Plastics Ordinance of 2021” was enacted by the Sanggunian on March 2, and recently signed by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio. It will ban the use of single-use plastics in the city, and will regulate their sale and distribution. Among the products to be prohibited include cups, condiment packets and containers, stirrers, straws, and cutlery.   “Davao City is now one of the nearly 500 local government unit which have ordinances prohibiting SUPs,” Herrera noted.   “More and more LGUs across the country are taking the initiative to address the problem of plastic pollution, and it is high time for a national law so that action on this front becomes more effective, more impactful, and more sustainable,” she added.   The CCC, led by its Chairperson-designate Department of Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez, has been pushing for the passage of a law to phase-out single-use plastics starting with the most problematic types, citing this campaign “as a crucial component of effective solid waste management and climate crisis action.”   Along with advocates and stakeholders, the CCC provided inputs to the House of Representatives technical working group that consolidated multiple bills regulating SUPs filed in the lower house, resulting in House Bill 9147 which has been approved on second reading.   The proposed legislation will begin a phased ban on SUPs as part of the broad range of solutions needed by the country, including establishing Extended Producer Responsibility or EPR, which will hold producers responsible for collecting and recycling the amount of plastic they produce and introduce to the market; improving waste management; incentivizing consumers, retailers, and manufacturers; exploring alternatives to SUPs; and raising awareness and changing behaviors.   In its position paper on the bill, the CCC emphasized that it is aligned with the aim to “to advance realistic solutions to address the challenge of single-use plastics pollution and provide a clear pathway for the pursuit of sustainable consumption and production,” adding that a law “will serve as an overarching framework and a unified policy to strengthen the impact of existing local ordinances that currently ban or regulate single-use plastics across [the Philippines].”
June 30, 2021 Wednesday
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Pagtatanim ng sariling pagkain, tampok sa ika-51 na episode ng seryeng ‘Stories for a Better Normal’
MAYNILA, ika-30 ng Hunyo taong 2021 — Magtitipon-tipon virtually ang ilan sa mga masisigasig na urban gardeners upang magbahagi ng karanasan sa pagsisimula ng home at community food gardens, sa episode na “May Pagkain sa Bakuran" ng Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways (CCC), ang online discussion na pinangungunahan ni Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda at ng Climate Change Commission. Gusto nating mahikayat ang mga kabahayan at pamayanang makapagsimula ng mga taniman para sa food security lalo ngayong panahon ng panedmya.   Makakasama sa online na talakayan sina Diding Libao, lider ng Inang Maria’s Garden ng Payatas; Christine Joy Tomate at Jeanny Flojimon ng Food Today Food Tomorrow, Payatas; Atty. JC Tejano ng Urban Green Commune; at Nicole Obligacion, isang urban gardener mula sa Anyone Can Garden Facebook blog. Naka livestream ito sa Huwebes, ika-01 ng Hulyo 2021, 10:00 AM via Facebook Live sa facebook.com/CCCPhl at facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda.   Inilantad ng kasalukuyang pandemya ang kahinaan ng tradisyunal na food supply chain na nagbabanta sa pagkain at seguridad sa nutrisyon ng mga Pilipino. Bilang solusyon, ginawang communal food garden ang ilan sa mga kabahayan, bakuran, at mga bakanteng lote, kabilang na sa mga depressed areas. Unti-unti na ring nauuso ang container gardening bilang food source at recreational activity alinsunod sa quarantine restrictions na ipinapatupad sa buong bansa. Hinihikayat din ang mga manonood na kumuha ng mga practical tips mula sa mga panauhin.   Bilang isang online na talakayan upang maisulong ang kalusugan at kamalayang pang-kapaligiran, naglalayon ang Stories for a Better Normal na baguhin ang kaisipan ng bawat Pilipino at pamayanan sa mga hamon ng climate change at ng pandemya, tungo sa buhay na maka-kalikasan at sustainable sa ilalim ng ‘better normal’.   Na-organisa ang online na talakayang ito mula sa pagtutulungan ng tanggapan ni dating three-term Senator at ngayo'y Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda at ng CCC na binigyang-suporta naman ng Department of Education at Philippine Information Agency, at ng civil society organizations na Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines at ng Mother Earth Foundation.
June 30, 2021 Wednesday
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Growing your own food in 51st episode of ‘Stories for a Better Normal’ Series
MANILA, 29 June 2021 — Urban gardeners will gather virtually to share their experience of setting up and maintaining their home and community food gardens and to encourage households and communities to start their own edible gardens on the 51st episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways,” with the topic, “May Pagkain sa Bakuran.” The episode, conceptualized and hosted by three-term former Senator, now Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda, will air on Thursday, 1 July 2021, 10:00 AM via Facebook Live at facebook.com/CCCPhl and facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda. Joining the online conversation are guests including Diding Libao, leader of Inang Maria’s Garden of Payatas; Christine Joy Tomate and Jeanny Flojimon of Food Today Food Tomorrow Payatas; Atty. JC Tejano of Greenfields Green Commune; and Nicole Obligacion,  urban gardener of Anyone Can Garden Facebook blog. The current pandemic has exposed the vulnerability of food supply chains to shocks, that threaten the food and nutritional security of Filipinos. Homes, backyards, and empty lots, including those in depressed areas, were transformed into communal food gardens, helping Filipinos survive the pandemic. Container gardening  is also observed to rise as a source of food and recreational activity following the quarantine restrictions implemented across the country. The upcoming episode will encourage the viewers to grow food at home and in communities – as one way to secure and ensure a steady supply of safe and nutritious food in these challenging times. As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities. This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation.
June 29, 2021 Tuesday
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The Climate Change Commission (CCC) joins the Filipino people in mourning the passing of Former President and CCC Chairperson Benigno Simeon Aquino III.
MANILA, 26 June 2021 - PNoy, as many called him, was an ally of the climate movement. Together with French President François Hollande, he spearheaded the Manila Call to Action on Climate Change in 2015 to call on all nations to work collectively and swiftly to fight climate change. Later that year at the 21st Conference of Parties to the United Nations Convention on Climate Change or COP21, he urged fellow world leaders to adopt the Paris Agreement as a testament of global solidarity and as a fair and legally binding treaty to stop global warming and climate change.  Under his leadership, the Philippines committed to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 70% by 2030 with its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions through the support of developed countries.  PNoy also signed into law Republic Act 10174 creating the People’s Survival Fund, which seeks to allocate annually P1 billion pesos for the provision of grants for climate change adaptation and resilience-building projects of local communities.  The CCC expresses its deepest sympathies to the Aquino family.
June 26, 2021 Saturday
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“Sustainability is more fun in Siargao!”
Farmers, weavers, and fisherfolks in Siargao learn sustainable livelihoods while promoting their culture. Photo from the presentation of Kara Rosas of Lokal Lab Siargao. MANILA, 25 June 2021 —  The 50th episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways” highlighted the ways on how travel can be sustainable, inspiring, and life-changing in the better normal, on the first part of “Sustainable Travel Series” featuring the island of Siargao in Surigao del Norte.   Siargao is known for its world-class surf spots, sparkling white sand islets, turquoise tide pools, and palm tree-laden lagoons.   The online conversation conceptualized and hosted by three-term Senator, now Deputy Speaker and Antique Representative Loren Legarda featured individuals and organizations in Siargao including Andi Eigenmann, vlogger of “Happy Islanders”; Vice Mayor Alfredo Matugas Coro II of Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte; Jerlyn Rabaca, School Administrator of Espoir School of Life Inc.; and Kara Rosas, Executive Director of Lokal Lab Siargao who shared and promoted ecosystems protection, climate resilience, and sustainable tourism in the island.   "Naging passionate ako about helping raise awareness on how to live a sustainable life. I care so much about the environment especially the ocean, because it brought me so much joy over the years. For me it's just one thing, to educate the locals and the visitors that come here and hope that I can influence them to be more mindful as people who live here and to be able to know how to preserve and care for the island they live in. And for the tourist na sana marealize nila na hindi nila ito bahay at sana tratuhin nila ito with respect and with care, 'leave nothing but footprints' sabi nga nila,” said Andi Eigenmann as she shared how she enjoys living the island life.   “We focus on social tourism to connect people with nature and with Siargao. It is a form of tourism that brings travelers to local communities with the goal of not only gaining pleasure from the experience, but also contributing to places they’re been visiting. We developed an eco-tourism industry that capitalizes on our biggest asset which is the mangrove forests and the vast municipal waters,” said Vice Mayor Coro as he tackled “Siargao it Up!,” a social tourism and mangrove management project of Del Carmen LGU.   "We all need someone who will believe in us, especially if the students are coming from underserved areas. Sa simpleng paniniwala ng isang eskwelahan, doon mabubuo yung pangarap ng isang bata. Aside from teaching them academically, we also wanted to teach them leadership habang bata pa sila, and to love the environment kung saan sila lumaki at pangalagaan 'yon," said Jerlyn Rabaca as she presented the advocacy of Espoir School of Life, a non-profit organization that provides free education to underprivileged children in Siargao.   "What we really want here at Lokal is to create a new way of life and to show that sustainability can happen, and it's not that difficult. It's through networking and empowering the local community working 'alongside them' rather 'for them', we're actually able to commit to a sustainable change. And more than anything, what we and Lokal want to show is that anyone really can help out as long as you're committed and you believe in what you're doing and the locals who also want to help out, and that's how you can make a change," said Kara Rosas as she shared the advocacy of Lokal Lab Siargao, a non-profit organization that supports and empowers the local community through impactful and sustainable projects that promote local culture.   Legarda, with co-host Atty. Ipat Luna, lauded the initiatives of the guests and committed to support the locals of Siargao by implementing measures that will enhance the local climate-adaptive capacities of communities, and at the same time, promote domestic tourism and travel sustainably.   “The time is not enough to be able to show the good things Filipinos actually do, the excellent work that the Filipino youth are modelling to the elders and we are showing to the world. It gives me the inspiration to see that you are embracing a life of nature and culture of sustainability in your own way and giving due respect to those who toil and till the land, to those who give food on the table,” Legarda concluded.   As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities.   This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation. 
June 25, 2021 Friday
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Sustainable Travel Series: Siargao sa ika-50 episode ng seryeng ‘Stories for a Better Normal’
MAYNILA, ika-23 ng Hunyo taong 2021 — Magtitipon-tipon virtually ang ilang individuals and organizations mula sa Siargao upang isulong ang natural resource protection, climate resilience, at sustainable tourism sa ika-50 episode ng seryeng “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways,” na may temang, “Sustainable Travel Series: Siargao”.   Ang online na talakayan, na hango sa konsepto ng dating three-term Senator, na ngayo’y Deputy Speaker at Antique Representative Loren Legarda, ay ipapalabas sa Huwebes, ika-24 ng Hunyo 2021, 10:00 AM sa Facebook Live  facebook.com/CCCPhl at facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda.   Kabilang sa mga panauhin ay sina Vice Mayor Alfredo Matugas Coro II ng Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte; Andi Eigenmann, celebrity at social media influencer; Jerlyn Rabaca, Espoir School of Life educator; at Kara Rosas, entrepreneur founder ng Lokal Lab. Magbabahagi sila ng paglalakbay nila tungo sa better normal sa pamamagitan ng kani-kanilang lifestyle, advocacy at community-based enterprises sa Siargao.   Ang kasalukuyang pandemya ang naging dahilan upang mapabuti ang kalagayan ng industriya ng turismo sa bansa, na nagdulot ng oportunidad upang magkaroon ng sustainability sa sektor. Ang episode na ito ay magsisilbing platform upang isulong ang lokal na turismo at mga pamamaraan ng sustainable na paglalakbay sa kabila ng mga travel restrictions na patuloy pa ring ipinatutupad.   Bilang isang online na talakayan upang maisulong ang kalusugan at kamalayang pang-kapaligiran, naglalayon ang "Stories for a Better Normal" na baguhin ang kaisipan ng mga tao, mga pamilya, at mga pamayanan sa pamamagitan ng pagpapakita ng mga pamamaraan kung saan maaaring magkaroon tayo at isabuhay natin ang isang ‘better normal’ sa loob ng ating mga pamayanan.   Na-organisa ang online na talakayang ito mula sa pagtutulungan ng tanggapan ni Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda at ng Climate Change Commission (CCC) na binigyang-suporta naman ng Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines at ng Mother Earth Foundation.
June 23, 2021 Wednesday
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Sustainable Travel Series: Siargao in 50th episode of ‘Stories for a Better Normal’ Series
MANILA, 22 June 2021 — Individuals and organizations from Siargao will gather virtually to promote ecosystems protection, climate resilience, and sustainable development on the 50th episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways,” with the topic, “Sustainable Travel Series: Siargao.”   The program, conceptualized and hosted by three-term former Senator, now Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda, will air on Thursday, 24 June 2021, 10:00 AM via Facebook Live at facebook.com/CCCPhl and facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda.   Joining the online conversation are guests including Vice Mayor Alfredo Matugas Coro II of Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte; Andi Eigenmann, celebrity and social media influencer; Jerlyn Rabaca from Espoir School of Life; and Kara Rosas from Lokal Lab Siargao, to share ways on how travel can be sustainable, inspiring, and life-changing post-pandemic or in the better normal.   The pandemic has led to a rethink in the tourism industry, providing an opportunity for more sustainability in the sector. While there are certain travel restrictions still in place, the upcoming episode will serve as a platform to promote domestic tourism and ways to travel sustainably.   As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities.   This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation.
June 22, 2021 Tuesday
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“Di tayo dapat basta mamigay lang ng pagkain, kinakailangan ding maturuan natin ang lahat na magtanim ng kani-kaniyang pagkain” – Ayon sa mga tagapag-taguyod ng mga Sustainable Community Pantries
MAYNILA, ika-21 ng Hunyo taong 2021 —  Sa ika-49 na episode ng seryeng “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways” na nag-tampok ng limang nagtatag ng zero-waste at makabagong mga community pantries na nagtataglay ng di lamang bukas-palad na pakikipag-kapwa, kundi pati narin sustainable na mga paraan para mabigyang  inspirasyon ang mas maraming mga Pilipino na bawasan ang kanilang paggamit ng mga plastic packaging.   Ang online na talakayan ay hango sa konsepto ng dating three-term former Senator, na ngayo’y Deputy Speaker at Antique Representative na si Loren Legarda. Kabilang sa mga panauhin ang mga community pantry organizers na sina Adeline Almelor mula sa Brgy. San Miguel, Iriga City Camarines Sur Zero Waste Community Pantry; Jay-vee Mendoza ng Anahaw, San Pedro, Laguna Community Plant-ry; Edren Llanillo, Co-founder ng Go Bike Project sa Bugallon, Pangasinan; Maricon Alvarez ng Mother Earth Foundation (MEF) Malabon Community Pantry; at Evelyn Vergara, Founder ng the Community Reading Pantry ng Tabotong Elementary School sa Sarangani Province.   “Dapat hangaan ang mga community pantries sa innovation, sa bayanihan, sa unique na ugali ng mga Pilipino na tumulong hangga't kaya, at sa katapatan ng mga Pilipino” sabi ni Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda.   Ibinahagi ng mga guests kung paano pinapayagan ng kani-kanilang community pantry ang mga tao na mag-donate at kumuha ng mga pagkain at iba pang pangunahing mga pangangailangan nang libre, habang ang iba naman ay namamahagi ng mga gulay at halaman para tulungan ang mga tao na magtanim ng sarili nilang pagkain. Ang ibang mga pantry ay nakapag-bibigay din ng serbisyong pang-kalusugan at pang-edukasyon.   “Nakakataba talaga ng puso na maging daluyan ng pagtutulungan.  Habang binibigyang-diin natin ang “gift of sharing", masaya kaming maipakita ito at umaasa na makahikayat pa ng iba na mayroong mga alternatibo sa single-use plastics,” sabi ni Adeline Almelor.   "Ang slogan po ng Anahaw Community Pantry ay 'Take what you can plant, share what others can sow.' Ito ay inspired sa community pantry ng Maginhawa bagaman nilagyan namin ng konting twist – ang sine-share namin dito ay mga halaman, mga punla at kaalaman sa pagtatanim," sabi ni Jay-vee Mendoza.   “Simple lamang ang konsepto ng GO BIKE Project. Una, mag-train ng mga kabataan para maging emergency responders, at maging first aiders sa panahon ng sakuna. Pangalawa, mag-customize, mag-disenyo ng mga bisikletang gagamitin nila upang tumugon doon sa mga aksidente, o para magbigay ng first aid sa sino mang nangangailangan ng tulong. It’s a combination of youth na biker volunteers, first aider, tapos meron na rin silang gagamiting bike sa pagliligtas natin ng mga buhay,” sabi ni Edren Llanillo.   "Nang dumating ang community pantry, naisip namin na ang ganda ng konsepto na tumutulong ka. Why not help the community na nakakausap natin sa araw-araw na  i-embrace yung konsepto ng zero-waste," sabi ni Maricon Alvarez.   “Ginawa namin ang Reading Community Pantry na kung saan inilabas namin ang reading materials from our reading corner sa school at inilatag sa pantry, kasama ng mga snacks na binili galing sa sariling bulsa at iilang donors,” sabi ni Evelyn Vergara.   Ang community pantry ay isang serbisyong nakapag-bibigay ng mga goods direkta sa lokal nating mga mamamayan sa ilalim ng isang "trust system" kung saan ibinabandera ang slogan na, “Take what you need, give what you can.” Ang panimulang community pantry na nabuo sa gitna ng pandemya ay makikita sa Maginhawa Street sa Quezon City.   Hinikayat ni Deputy Speaker Legarda ang lahat kasama ng iba pang mga community pantries na gayahin ang sustainable na mga kasanayan sa pamamagitan ng pagbibigay sa mga tao ng mga binhi at mga halaman upang makapag-tanim sila sa kani-kanilang mga tahanan sa halip na bigyan lamang sila ng mga instant foods.   “Hindi lang dapat bigay ng bigay, hindi tayo dapat forever na umaasa sa iba. 'Di lang natin dapat bigyan ng isda ang tao, bagkus turuan din natin siyang mangisda'. Sa ganitong pagkakataon, bigyan natin ang mga tao ng punla, para makapag-tanim siya ng sarili niyang pagkain. Bigyan natin ang mga tao ng pagkain, ngunit mas mabuting maturuan ang nga tao kung paanong makapagtanim sila ng sarili nilang pagkain,” pagtatapos ni Legarda.   Bilang isang online na talakayan upang maisulong ang kalusugan at kamalayang pang-kapaligiran, naglalayon ang "Stories for a Better Normal" na baguhin ang kaisipan ng mga tao, mga pamilya, at mga pamayanan sa pamamagitan ng pagpapakita ng mga pamamaraan kung saan maaaring magkaroon tayo at maisasabuhay natin ang isang ‘better normal’ sa loob ng ating mga pamayanan.   Na-organisa ang online na talakayang ito mula sa pagtutulungan ng tanggapan ni Deputy Speaker Legarda at ng Climate Change Commission (CCC) na binigyang-suporta naman ng Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines at ng Mother Earth Foundation.
June 21, 2021 Monday
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CCC: Celebrate Rizal’s Life by Upholding Integrity for the Country, Climate, Environment
MANILA, 19 June 2021 — The Climate Change Commission honors Dr. Jose Rizal’s patriotism and unequivocal dedication and commitment to serving the country in commemoration of his 160th birth anniversary today.   Citing historical accounts, while in exile in Dapitan, Dr. Jose Rizal contributed to the construction of the town’s first water system, the development of hills into orchards of fruit-bearing trees, the creation of livelihoods from these projects, and the draining of marshes to rid the community of malaria.   He also helped plan the now sprawling city in Zamboanga by carrying out various projects such as the construction of an aqueduct that provided people with clean water and the building of fish pens. He also advocated for the draining of swamps to avoid being breeding places of mosquitoes, use of coconut oil lamps to light up streets, and turning the town into a green space by planting trees. He was engaged in farming, planting trees and crops, and showing the local people how to improve their agricultural productivity through enhanced methods like irrigation.   As a present tribute to the national hero, the CCC urges all Filipinos to continue his work of caring for the environment by introducing innovative solutions to issues and problems of the country, especially in light of the biggest threat to humanity and development, which is climate change.   The CCC also encourages the youth to follow the advocacies of Dr. Rizal, not just in the aspect of protecting the rights and sovereignty of the Filipino people, but also with regard to preserving the environment, to move towards the country’s desired progress to be a truly strong, independent nation.
June 19, 2021 Saturday
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“We don’t just give food, we should teach how to grow our own food” – Sustainable Community Pantries
To ensure that health protocols are observed, community pantries have signages reminding locals to maintain physical distancing, wear masks, and disinfect. Photo from the presentation of Adeline Almelor of the Zero Waste Community Pantry in Brgy. San Miguel, Iriga City Camarines Sur. MANILA, 18 June 2021 — The 49th episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways” featured five founders of zero-waste and innovative community pantries that exhibit not only generosity and consideration, but also sustainable and green practices to inspire more Filipinos to reduce the use of plastic packaging and to plant their own food at their homes.   The online conversation hosted by three-term Senator, now Deputy Speaker and Antique Representative Loren Legarda featured community pantry organizers including Adeline Almelor from Brgy. San Miguel, Iriga City Camarines Sur Zero Waste Community Pantry; Jay-vee Mendoza from Anahaw, San Pedro, Laguna Community Plant-ry; Edren Llanillo, Co-founder of Go Bike Project, Bugallon, Pangasinan; Maricon Alvarez from Mother Earth Foundation (MEF) Malabon Community Pantry; and Evelyn Vergara, Founder of the Community Reading Pantry of Tabotong Elementary School in Saranggani Province.   “Dapat hangaan ang mga community pantries sa innovation, sa bayanihan, sa unique na ugali ng mga Pilipino na tumulong hangga't kaya, at sa honesty ng mga Pilipino na kukuha lang niyang kainin at ng kanyang pamilya,” said Legarda.   The guest organizers shared how their community pantries allow people to donate and get food and basic necessities for free, while others distribute vegetable seeds and plants to help people grow their own food. Other pantries also delivered healthcare and educational services.   “Nakakataba talaga ng puso na maging daluyan ng pagtutulungan.  As we highlight the gift of sharing, we are happy to show and hopefully to inspire others that there are many alternatives to single-use plastics,” said Almelor.   "Ang slogan po ng Anahaw Community Pantry ay 'Take what you can plant, share what others can sow.' Ito ay inspired sa community pantry ng Maginhawa although nilagyan namin ng konting twist – ang sine-share namin dito at plants, seedlings and knowledge sa pagtatanim," said Mendoza.   “Simple lamang ang konsepto ng GO BIKE Project, una mag-train ng mga kabataan para maging emergency responders, maging first aiders na tutugon sa panahon ng sakuna, pangalawa mag-customize, mag-disenyo ng mga bisikletang gagamitin nila upang tumugon doon sa mga aksidente, o para magbigay ng first aid sa sino man nangangailangan ng tulong. It’s a combination of a youth na biker volunteers, first aider, tapos meron na rin silang gagamiting bike in saving lives,” said Llanillo.   "Nang dumating ang community pantry, naisip namin na ang ganda ng konsepto na tumutulong ka. Why not help the community people na nakakausap natin sa araw araw na turuan sila i-embrace yung konsepto ng zero waste?" said Alvarez.   “Ginawa namin ang Reading Community Pantry, na kung saan inilabas namin ang reading materials from our reading corner sa school at inilatag sa pantry, kasama ng mga snacks na binili galing sa sariling bulsa,” said Vergara.   A community pantry is a service that offers goods directly to locals. It operates on trust systems and banners the slogan, “Take what you need, give what you can.” The first community pantry during the pandemic was set up in Maginhawa in Quezon City.   Legarda then encouraged the viewers and other community pantries to adopt sustainable practices – by giving people seeds and plants for people to grow in their homes, instead of just giving canned goods, noodles, and instant foods.   “Hindi lang dapat bigay ng bigay, hindi tayo dapat forever na umaasa sa iba. 'We should give a man a fish, but also teach him how to fish'. In this case, we give the person a seed, so that that person can grow his/her own food. We give human a food, but it's better to teach the person how to grow their own food,” Legarda concluded.   As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities.   This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation.
June 18, 2021 Friday
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CCC: The Youth Will Lead the Way to a Sustainable Future
A circular economy is an alternative economic model which promotes a more resource-efficient and cleaner production systems as no materials will be wasted. Photo from the presentation of Comm. Rachel Anne S. Herrera. MANILA, 18 June 2021 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) encourages the youth to join the ongoing campaign to phase out single-use plastics and accelerate the uptake of circular economy to strengthen the country’s climate action.   In the Sulong Pilipinas 2021: Climate Change and the New Normal with the Youth Sector forum, organized by the Department of Finance, discussion focused on the importance of the role of Filipino youth in helping the country become more resilient to the effects of climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic and in improving socioeconomic policies. Hundreds of youth leaders and members of various youth organizations joined as the DOF and CCC, together with other national government agencies and private sector organizations, presented their related programs and initiatives.   Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III, who is also the Chair-designate of CCC, said that the climate crisis could wipe away the country’s economic gains in one go, like a tsunami, if we continue to do nothing and fail to mitigate it.   On a long term average basis, the Philippines is expected to incur PHP 177 billion (USD 3.6 billion) per year in losses to public and private assets due to typhoons and earthquakes. In the next 50 years, the country has a 40% chance of experiencing a loss exceeding PHP 989 billion, and a 20% chance of experiencing a loss exceeding PHP 1,525 billion.   “As bearers of the future, the youth--who will have to live through 2030 and beyond--have the greatest stake in overcoming this crisis. It is therefore very important that you understand this issue and take the lead in reversing this destructive course,” said Dominguez. “We need your determination to build a greener, healthier and climate-resilient future. We want you to use your talents, knowledge, and passion to achieve our climate ambition.”   Finance Assistant Secretary Paola Alvarez presented the country’s adaptation and mitigation measures, as well as initiatives in setting up the climate finance roadmap.   Climate finance in the country is a balance between the implementation of sustainable climate change actions and the pursuit of the country’s economic growth and development potential – focusing on financial instruments that are designed to mitigate the economic impacts of climate change while increasing revenue generation, taking into account environmental risks and impacts; and on green facilities and solutions to finance programs and projects on environment and natural resources management.   “All of these things are part of our commitments to show that the Philippines is serious in terms of implementing its climate change initiatives. We hope that the youth will appreciate what we are doing so that you can craft actionable recommendations on what or how you think the government can do policy or take action to help you secure your future,” said Alvarez, who is also the representative of Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III in the Advisory Council of the Principles of Sustainable Finance.   CCC Commissioner Rachel Herrera shared the government’s initiatives on circular economy and anti-single use plastic campaign. She emphasized that pursuing a circular economy is interconnected with phasing out single-use plastics – which has been an environmental, public health, and climate change concern.   A circular economy is an alternative economic model where no materials are wasted; instead of ending up as waste, they move back to the beginning of the supply chain, meaning used materials find new lives. It adopts a more resource-efficient and cleaner production systems where the industry becomes more competitive while protecting the environment better.   “Our country’s single-use plastic problem is already hurting the entire planet. This is not the wake-up call—we’ve already been hearing that for many years now; but it is high time to stop pressing the snooze button, and start solving the problem,” Herrera stressed.   The CCC encourages the youth to adapt to more sustainable lifestyles and inspire more people to shift away from single-use plastics, and towards circularity and sustainability.   “The circular economy is largely focused on the technology and business side, but in the end a shift to it will only happen and succeed if individuals live sustainably—and in that, I hope you can spark positive, lasting change,” Herrera said. “We look forward to your insights on these issues. With young Filipinos like you leading the way, we have faith: susulong tayo sa mas ligtas at sustainable na kinabukasan para sa inyo,” she added.   Sulong Pilipinas is the annual consultative conference between the Duterte administration and various citizen groups. Since 2016, Sulong has been the platform for the government to consult stakeholders on socioeconomic priorities.   For more updates, visit the Facebook Page of Sulong Pilipinas at facebook.com/TulongSulongPH.
June 18, 2021 Friday
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CCC: Sustainable Gastronomy is a call for Climate Action!
MANILA, 16 June 2021 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) joins the world in the celebration of local ingredients and producers, preserving culinary traditions and the environment, raising awareness on global sustainable development measures across the sectors of agriculture, forestry, and fisheries, and to practice sustainability in our daily lives this Sustainable Gastronomy Day.   June 18 of each year marks the celebration of Sustainable Gastronomy Day under UN General Assembly Resolution A/RES/71/246. This celebration aims to focus the world’s attention on the role that sustainable gastronomy can play in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, including by promoting agricultural development, food security, nutrition, sustainable food production and the conservation of biodiversity,   Gastronomy is the study of the relationship between food and culture. It involves training and studying the preparation, production, and service of the various foods and beverages, from countries around the world. Sustainability is the idea of something that is done in a way without causing any infliction to our natural resources and can be continued into the future without harming our environment or health.   Sustainable gastronomy is the cuisine that takes into account where ingredients are from, how food is grown/sourced and how it gets to our markets and our plates, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.   But the Special Report on Climate Change and Land released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimated that food generated between 21% and 37% of man-made emissions, specifically from: (i) crop and livestock activities within the farm; (ii) land use and land-use change dynamics associated with agriculture; and (iii) food processing, retail and consumption patterns, including the manufacture of chemical fertilizers and fuel.   For this celebration, the CCC urges everyone to help build a common vision for sustainable gastronomy — where food is nutritious and accessible to all, where we use clean sources of energy for cooking like through natural gas and electricity instead of coal, where we use biodegradable packaging like cooking and wrapping food in banana leaves, and where our ingredients and natural resources are managed in a way that maintains ecosystem functions to support current human needs, and lowers our carbon footprint. 
June 16, 2021 Wednesday
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Zero-waste at makabagong community pantries, bibida ngayong ika-49 na episode ng seryeng ‘Stories for a Better Normal’
MAYNILA, ika-16 ng Hunyo taong 2021 —Magtitipon-tipon virtually ang ilan sa mga kilalang community pantry organizers upang ibahagi ang kani-kanilang sustainable and green practices sa pag-oorganisa sa mga community-based initiatives ngayong ika-49 na episode ng seryeng “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways,” na may temang, “Zero-waste and Innovative Community Pantries.”   Pinangungunahan ni dating three-term Senator, at ngayo'y Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda ang episode na ito, na mapapanood sa Huwebes, ika-17 ng Hunyo 2021, 10:00 AM via Facebook Live sa facebook.com/CCCPhl at facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda.   Kasama sa gaganaping online na talakayan ang mga community pantry organizers mula sa iba’t ibang dako ng bansa, kabilang na rito sina Adeline Almelor mula sa Brgy. San Miguel Iriga City, Camarines Sur Zero Waste Community Pantry; Maricon Alvarez mula sa Mother Earth Foundation (MEF) Malabon Community Pantry; Jay-vee Mendoza mula sa Anahaw, San Pedro, Laguna Community Plant-ry; Edren Llanillo, Co-founder ng Go Bike Project, mula sa Bugallon, Pangasinan; at Evelyn Vergara, Founder ng Community Reading Pantry ng Tabotong Elementary School sa Saranggani Province.   Nagtatayo ng mga pansamantalang community pantries ang mga Pilipino para matulungan ang mga naghihikaos sa pera dahil sa kawalan ng trabaho ngayong panahon ng pandemya. Sa pamamagitan ng mga nasabing community pantries nagkaroon ng paraan ang mga tao para mag-donate at makakuha ng libreng pagkain at iba pang pangunahing pangangailangan, habang ang iba naman ay namamahagi ng mga binhi ng gulay at iba pang mga halaman upang makatulong sa ibang tao na makapagtanim ng sarili nilang kakainin. Samantala, naghahatid din ang ilang pantries ng mga serbisyong pangkalusugan at pang-edukasyon.   Itatampok sa episode na ito ang mga indibidwal na nag-organisa at nanguna sa community pantries sa kani-kanilang mga barangay. Ipinakita nila hindi lamang ang kagandahang loob at konsiderasyon, kun’di pati na rin ang pagsasagawa ng mga zero-waste operations, umaasa na magbigay inspirasyon sa maraming mga Pilipino na bawasan ang paggamit ng plastic packaging.   Bilang isang online na talakayan upang maisulong ang kalusugan, kamalayang pangkapaligiran, at mga kasanayan sa pag-angkop sa klima, naglalayon ang "Stories for a Better Normal" na baguhin ang kaisipan ng mga tao, mga pamilya, at mga pamayanan sa pamamagitan ng pagpapakita ng mga pamamaraan kung saan maaaring magkaroon tayo at isabuhay natin ang isang ‘better normal’ sa loob ng ating mga pamayanan.   Na-organisa ang online na talakayang ito mula sa pagtutulungan ng tanggapan ni Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda at ng Climate Change Commission (CCC) na binigyang-suporta naman mula sa Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Mother Earth Foundation, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, and The Climate Reality Project-Philippines.
June 16, 2021 Wednesday
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Zero-waste & Innovative Community Pantries in 49th episode of ‘Stories for a Better Normal’ Series
MANILA, 15 June 2021 — Community pantry organizers will gather virtually to exhibit sustainable and green practices in organizing and participating in community-based initiatives on the 49th episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Change Pathways,” with the topic, “Zero-waste and Innovative Community Pantries.”   The episode, hosted by three-term former Senator, now Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda, will air on Thursday, 17 June 2021, 10:00 AM via Facebook Live at facebook.com/CCCPhl and facebook.com/iamlorenlegarda.   Joining the online conversation are community pantry organizers from various areas in the country including  Adeline Almelor from Brgy. San Miguel Iriga City , Camarines Sur Zero Waste Community Pantry; Maricon Alvarez from Mother Earth Foundation (MEF) Malabon Community Pantry; Jay-vee Mendoza from Anahaw, San Pedro, Laguna Community Plant-ry; Edren Llanillo, Co-founder of Go Bike Project, Bugallon, Pangasinan; and Evelyn Vergara, Founder of the Community Reading Pantry of Tabotong Elementary School in Saranggani Province.   Filipinos are setting up makeshift community pantries to aid those that suffer economically as a result of the pandemic. The Community Pantries allow people to donate and get food and basic necessities for free, while others distribute vegetable seeds and plants to help people grow their own food. Other pantries also delivered healthcare and educational services.   The upcoming episode will feature individuals who organize and lead community pantries in their respective barangays. They exhibit not only generosity and consideration, but also practice zero-waste operations, hopeful to inspire more Filipinos to reduce the use of plastic packaging.   As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities.   This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Philippine Information Agency, Mother Earth Foundation, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, and The Climate Reality Project-Philippines.
June 15, 2021 Tuesday
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TAYO Laban Sa Pandemya: Tulong. Alaga. Yakap. Oras.
The Department of Education has ensured that their teaching and non-teaching personnel were given adequate psychosocial support during the pandemic. Photo from the presentation of Ms. Joan Grace Llamado from the DepEd Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service. MANILA, 14 June 2021 — The 48th episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways” featured the Department of Education’s “TAYO Laban Sa Pandemya: Tulong. Alaga. Yakap. Oras,” a mental health wellness campaign aimed to raise awareness and advocate for mental health and wellness to protect and promote the well-being of learners and personnel during the pandemic.   The online conversation conceptualized and hosted by three-term Senator, now Deputy Speaker and Antique Representative Loren Legarda featured guests from DepEd including Director Ronilda R. Co and Ms. Joan Grace Llamado from the DepEd Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service (DRRMS); Ms. Marie Fe G. Manuzon, Principal II from San Casimiro Elementary School in Nueva Ecija; and Marchelle dela Cruz from Cabiao Senior High School, Nueva Ecija and Francis Paulin from Buanoy National High School, Cebu, who shared and discussed the Department’s Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Services (MHPSS) for Learners of the DepEd DRRMS, particularly the OKKK! Tambayan (Online Kahusayan at Katatagan ng Kabataan), and other programs aimed at protecting and promoting the well-being of learners and personnel in times of pandemic and disasters.   Director Co and Ms. Llamado emphasized the importance of knowing the real state of mental health of our students and educators to be able to provide proper care and assistance to them.   “Learning continuity in the midst of emergency or disasters - pero bago tayo makapag-continuity, kailangang alagaan at alamin natin ang kalagayan ng mga tao at bigyan sila ng alaga, kaginhawaan, at katatagan, para makapagpatuloy sa pag-aaral, o kaya pagtuturo, o pagpapatuloy ng kanilang gawain,” said Dir. Co.   “Napakahalaga po ng ating mga DepEd personnel, hindi po natin maibibigay yung quality education para sa ating mga learners kung ang mga teachers po natin ay hindi rin okay, kaya nagbibigay rin po tayo sa kanila ng psychological first aid,” said Ms. Llamado.   Principal Manuzon expressed that unity and showing care toward one another are keys to overcoming the challenges posed by the pandemic.   “Ang pagkakaisa, pagtutulungan, at pagmamahalan sa loob at labas ng paaralan ay isang malaking tulong upang malabanan ang kahit anong pagsubok ang kinakaharap ngayong panahon na may pandemya dito sa ating bansa,” said Principal Manuzon.   Dela Cruz and Paulin, as OKKK! Tambayers, shared how they motivate their fellow students to continue finding their purpose and ways to cope with the stress brought by distance and online learning.   "Sabihin po nating 'You are important, you are worth it, and you have a purpose' kung hindi po natin nalalaman kung ano ang dahilan kung bakit tayo nandito sa mundo. Alam ko pong darating ang araw na masasabi natin na 'Alam ko na kung bakit ako nandito sa mundong ito, dahil may kailangan akong gawin at kakayanin ko ito. Kung mapapagod man ako ay tiyak na magpapatuloy ako para magawa ang purpose ko dito sa mundo," said dela Cruz.   “Ilagay po sa puso’t isipan natin na let’s not be hindered by the pandemic. Let’s be prosperous and innovative to bring out our own light and greatness,” said Paulin.   Legarda, who co-authored the Mental Health Act while she was at the Senate, emphasized the need to further support and strengthen the Mental Health and Psychosocial Services by implementing it to every DepEd school, so that everyone can have access to wellness at psychosocial support. She also highlighted the importance of mental wellness as we cope in this time of COVID-19 and disasters.   "Hindi perpekto ang buhay. Maraming hamon, hindi lang sa kabataan, pati na sa amin na may edad na at karanasan, hindi lang sa panahon ng pandemic. Ang daming challenges, ang daming problema, hindi mawawala iyon. Let us do what we can. Let us be grateful of whatever we have, big or small, at magtutulungan sa panahon ng pangangailangan,” Legarda concluded.   As an online discussion to promote health, environmental consciousness, and climate-adaptive practices, "Stories for a Better Normal" aims to change the mindset of individuals, families, and communities by demonstrating ways in which a ‘better normal’ can be realized within our communities.   This online discussion is organized in partnership between the Office of Deputy Speaker Legarda and the Climate Change Commission, with support from the Department of Education, Mother Earth Foundation, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, and The Climate Reality Project-Philippines.
June 14, 2021 Monday
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CCC on 123rd PH Independence Day: Liberate Filipinos from Climate Threats
MANILA, 12 June 2021 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) joins the Filipino nation in pursuing prosperity and resilience through urgent and widespread climate action and green recovery, in observance of the 123rd anniversary of the declaration of Philippine Independence today.   As a large island archipelago, the Philippines is witness to the intensifying effects of climate change. An average of 20 tropical cyclones, which are now observed to obtain increased intensity and scale, ravage the country every year. Global warming exacerbates droughts and dry spells and increases ocean temperatures causing sea levels to rise and induce coral bleaching.   The CCC commits to work with every Filipino and the international community to bring urgent transformation to our ailing environment and planet. The clearing of our forests and conversion of our mountains and lands have threatened the survival of plant and animal species that nurture life in our ecosystems. The plastic waste polluting our rivers and oceans have killed marine life and given rise to public health and safety risks. The continuous burning of fossil fuels from industries and sectors has polluted our air and aggravated the climate crisis.    The CCC vows to continue liberating our vulnerable populations from growing climate risks, demand climate finance and justice, and escalate efforts towards a more resilient Philippines—a country that is plastic-free and sustainable, and whose peoples are inspired to protect our own nation and planet.   The CCC also calls on all Filipinos to honor our fallen heroes by joining in the observance and upholding our sovereignty, to allow the present and future generations to rise under our greener, healthier vision for the country.
June 12, 2021 Saturday
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Pasig, Tullahan, other PH rivers are the top plastic-emitting rivers in the world – study
Rivers are a major source of plastic waste in the oceans. Philippine rivers are among the top contributors to riverine plastic emissions. Modeling and image from The Ocean Cleanup. Website:https://theoceancleanup.com/sources/.   MANILA, 9 June 2021 — More than a quarter of rivers worldwide responsible for 80% of ocean plastic pollution are found in the Philippines, with Pasig River and 18 other Philippine rivers among the top 50 polluting rivers in the world, according to a scientific study released by the publication Ocean Cleanup in the journal Science Advances.   The researchers designed a tool to track plastics flowing into the oceans, which calculated that 454 'very small' rivers contribute 25 percent of global annual emissions, while 360 ‘small rivers’ make up 24 percent of emissions. One hundred sixty-two (162) ‘medium rivers’ are responsible for 22 percent of emissions, while 18 ‘large’ and six 'very large' rivers contribute to two percent and one percent of plastic emissions respectively. Other rivers of varying sizes contribute to 26 percent of the pollution.   The largest contributing country estimated by the model was the Philippines, with 466 out of 1,656 world’s rivers dumping more than 356,371 metric tons of plastic wastes annually. The world's most polluting river when it comes to plastic is the 27-kilometer Pasig River which runs through Metro Manila, accounting for 63,000 tons of plastic entering oceans from rivers per year.   The study also suggested that coastal countries like the Philippines have a relatively high probability of plastic entering the ocean due to various factors, including short distances from land-based sources to rivers, and much shorter distances to oceans. Plastic also flows more easily into rivers from paved urban areas than it does in rivers from forests, and travels farther in rainy climates than dry ones. The researchers also considered for the study the proximity of landfills and dumpsites to river banks, finding out that those within 10 kilometers of rivers are likely to spill into them.   Aside from Pasig River, among the top 50 rivers that carry the most amount of trash and plastic into the ocean mentioned in the study are the following:   •         Tullahan River •         Meycauayan River •         Pampanga River •         Libmanan River •         Rio Grande de Mindanao River •         Agno River •         Agusan River •         Paranaque River •         Iloilo River •         Imus River •         Zapote River •         Cagayan de Oro River •         Davao River •         Malaking Tubig River •         Tambo, Pasay (Storm drain) •         Jalaur River •         Cagayan River •         Hamulauon River   The study suggested to have a targeted approach to drastically reduce the world’s river plastic emissions.   For the Climate Change Commission, the study findings raise extreme concern on the issue of mismanaged plastic wastes in the country, and supports the call of the Commission for urgent efforts to solve the plastic crisis by implementing measures to regulate and in turn, halt the production of unnecessary plastics-made straws and stirrers, spoon and fork, and plastic labo, among others.   House Bill No. 9147 or the “Single-Use Plastics Products Regulation Act”, recently approved on second reading in the lower House, serves as a potential measure that will effectively address the country’s high rate of plastic waste leakage and plastics' impacts on the environment, public health, and climate change through a nationwide phaseout of single-use plastics and implementation of producers’ responsibility schemes. This ushers the start for producers to shift their dependence on throwaway packaging models to more sustainable reuse and refill systems.   The agency strongly urges the public to use alternatives and adopt workable community-based solutions to shift away from the single-use, throwaway culture that currently dominates our market.
June 09, 2021 Wednesday
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