World’s Ocean Day celebration in Las Pinas-Paranaque: A call to preserve Philippine Seas

By: Hemmady S. Mora

Volunteers in Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area (LPPCHEA) celebrated World’s Ocean’s Day last Saturday June 8, by standing-up against Manila Bay reclamation and plastic use.  They also conducted a coastal clean-up which served as a symbolic gathering of advocates.

As an archipelago, Philippine coastline stretches from north to south.  Communities have found their home and livelihood here, making it every Filipino’s duty to the world to ensure that World Ocean’s Day is celebrated by protecting the health of territorial seas, waterways and coastlines.

Advocates gathered to reiterate their campaign:  that single-use plastics are a threat to the well-being of territorial seas and the environment in general.  Although its use has been for so long embedded in most people’s routine, it is high time to break the mind set for a more sustainable lifestyle.

Mark Louie Aquino, Campaign Coordinator for Earth Island Institute stressed every Filipino’s role in preserving Philippine seas and waterways. “We encourage people to join us in breaking this mindset for a more sustainable lifestyle.  Let us constantly remind ourselves to bring our own reusables and as much as we can, refuse to add more commercial wastes as we go about our day.”

“As  important as our personal endeavour against the use of plastics, we need to come together and collectively support national and local actions and policies that would reduce or end the production especially of single-use plastics.  Reclamation projects are as grave a threat as plastic waste and marine pollution.  Collectively, we also must stand against these projects that are crafted not with the interest of the Filipino people in mind, nut mostly for greed and profit.  We call the attention of newly elected government officials to contribute to saving the world’s oceans by creating policies for creating healthier seas and coasts in the country.  Together, we can work for better coasts and seas,” Aquino underscored.

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