Friday, April 23, 2010

Green Philippines for Earth Day: Today and Beyond

Yippeee!!!! It’s another weekend, and that means precious time to spend with family and all those activities that I only get to do when I am away from my forty hours a week of paid toiling. At least I was able to sneak some time to attend an event for Earth Day last Thursday with friends and distinguished individual who has the same concern for Mother Nature. Before that I checked out the website for Ten Million Movement and made a personal commitment to plant indigenous plants and trees.  There are simpler tasks that one can pledge and I think it should be innate in each of us and need not be included as a commitment.

So what was Earth Day event like? It was no tree-planting or street-cleaning event (should I be disappointed or what?) but a show that seek to entertain and to create awareness. It was a presentation of the previous string of earth-day related activities by certain organizations, the various laws enacted by the government and what it has accomplished over the years when it comes to protecting the environment. It showcased a motorcade with Ms. Earth beauties, speeches from distinguished personalities with the likes of SM Supermalls President Ms. Annie Garcia detailing SM Supermalls contribution in the conservation and preservation effort, an Earth Day message from the Chairperson of Earth Day Network Philippines Ms. Elisea Gozun, the Report on the Green Philippines Program presented by DENR Secretary Horacio Ramos, a song number from singers Corita and Heber Bartolome, a performance by the world-renowned Banda Kawayan, awarding ceremonies for government and private organizations for their exemplary commitment and for those prized works-of-art of talented children.

What was I thinking during the show? Oh, the experience was not something new but I wonder how much percentage of people who attended that event will ever get to put into action what the speakers talked about. Would our actions be far greater than the carbon emission that we put through to pollute this earth? I saw there were much more people interested in shopping inside air-conditioned mall than care to attend this event outside an open-air function hall. Probably one would say, “Holy heat! I’d rather relax in a cozy room than listen to their speeches and be tortured in heat and sweat.” And with that I must be glad for those industrious farmers and street sweepers who continue to endure agonizing working conditions under intense heat. It sure is Earth Day for them every single day.

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