Stop plastic pollution and switch to eco-friendly alternatives – Anti-single-use plastic advocates
MANILA, 11 December 2020 — The 29th episode of “Stories for a Better Normal: Pandemic and Climate Pathways” series and part two of the topic, “Uniting Against Single-Use Plastic” featured programs and activities in government and social enterprises aimed at avoiding single-use plastics and promoting eco-friendly alternatives for a plastic-free environment in this period of pandemic and climate crisis.
Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda was joined by Mayor Josephine Alcantara-Cruz of Donsol, Sorsogon; Jamico Jamlang, Founder of The Bamboo Company; Czarina Constantino, National Lead of the "No Plastics in Nature Initiative" by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) - Philippines; and Wilma Arevalo, President of Kalipunan ng Liping Pilipina (KALIPI).
Jamlang shared the eco-friendly switch story of The Bamboo Company, which aims to introduce bamboo as an alternative to plastic to help combat global deforestation, mitigate climate change, and provide livelihood and economic opportunities. Bamboo decomposes easily, grows fast, and can be sustainably harvested. It has also been shown to be effective in sequestering carbon in the atmosphere.
“What we envision is a simple system where almost everything can be made with bamboo. Through this, we sustainably impact the people and the planet,” said Jamlang.
Constantino introduced the No Plastics in Nature Initiative which aims to stop the flow of plastics into ecosystems by mobilizing cities and tourism destinations to fight plastic pollution, pushing for national support to the global treaty on marine pollution and Extended Producers' Responsibility, working with businesses to implement public commitments to reduce or eliminate unnecessary plastics in their operations, and spark conversations and individual actions to address plastic pollution.
“With the participation of various stakeholders, local government units, the national government, legislators and policymakers, and also businesses and the general public, we can definitely achieve a vision of no plastics. So let us unite against single-use plastic,” said Constantino.
Arevalo introduced KALIPI, an organization that aims to empower women through community livelihood programs, and advocates against climate change. Their products include throw pillows, neck pillows, center table mats, and stuffed toys made from plastic sachets, plastic labo, and styrofoam.
“Lahat kami nagkakaisa sa adbokasiya tungkol sa climate change, at mga clean and green programs especially sa barangay namin. Before tayo lumabas, sa bahay muna tayo magsimula. Tinulungan kami ng WWF at LGU na makagawa ng kakaibang proyekto na pakikinabangan ng kalikasan, at ng kababaihan na magkaroon sila ng livelihood, na 'may pera sa basura'. Hindi lang naging basura yan, mayroon iyang pagkakakitaan,” said Arevalo.
Mayor Cruz shared the initiatives of the Donsol local government unit on plastic waste reduction such as the plastic smart city initiative, NAKAMOTO program, KALIPI Donsol Entrepinay, bottles exchange to different packages, and "Goodbye plastic, Hello basket" program.
“Ang aming goal sa Donsol ay ang pag-create at pag-maintain ng eco-friendly destination not just for the Filipinos, but also for everyone. Kahit na marami na kaming nagawa, patuloy na challenge sa amin ay kung paano namin ma-e-encourage hindi lang ang mga taga-Donsol, kundi maging ang mga dadaan dito sa aming lugar na maging eco-conscious sa aming sarili, sa bahay, at sa lahat,” said Mayor Cruz.
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 Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, The Climate Reality Project-Philippines and Mother Earth Foundation.
December 11, 2020 Friday