Saturday, April 25, 2009

Environment Conservation Champions

Environment conservation is one of the hottest issues we find today. In fact, advertising and marketing companies have started to relate brands to the environment or join the bandwagon of going "green" to promote their brands and earn more profit. I have seen slogans saying "Green is in" and "Let's Save the Environment" almost everywhere. Even car manufacturers have started making "green vehicles" claiming their products emit less carbon dioxide and is made of environment friendly materials.

Going green is good. Last April 22, we celebrated Earth Day and a number of malls in Metro Manila asked Haribon Foundation to join them in their environment conservation awareness programs. There were clean ups, tree planting, story telling for kids, exhibits and even singing contests. People nowadays are more exposed to environment activities which I think will be beneficial for the next generations. One thing is lacking, though, Filipinos lack environment conservation champions.

While I was listening to a radio program last Earth Day, the DJs started a contest asking listeners to name famous people who are known to be environmentalists. Of course, a nice price will be awaiting the lucky contestant. Instantly, several listeners called and texted names like: Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Al Gore, Oprah and several foreign celebrities. Only one contestant mentioned a Pinoy name, and he is Richard Gutierrez. Is he really and environment advocate? Don't we have Pinoy environmentalists? How about Chin Chin Guteirrez, Noel Cabangon and Joey Ayala? Are they really environment advocates or are they just joining the advocacy to increase their popularity? How about non-showbiz people? Politicians? Nahhh, too risky to trust them most especially now that elections are just around the corner.

Filipinos need an environment conservation champion to lead them. Last people to be known here were Celso Roque and Junie Kalaw. Do you know them? They were famous during the 80's and it has been 2 decades and nobody followed their footsteps. Hopefully somebody will step up and be a champion to the environment cause, not just as a spokesperson but a person who can start movements. Influence plays a major key and credibility will also be major factor. And a good leader must lead by example and must always be a good follower.

6 comments:

Miriam said...

Nice piece! you are right some people with political ambition or groups who are in power might or are already using the cause to drum up their popularity and increase their gain. No wonder scarce na ang mga tunay na 'advocates'.

Jan said...

I honestly think you can represent us bloggers. You have the makings of a good advocate. O ayan, may assignment ka na ngayon. ",)

lemuel said...

@miriam, just an example, a lady politician started her organization claiming to plant as many trees they can, but has been planting mostly foreign tree species. our local birds and insects do not go near these trees and most of the trees makes our soil acidic, affecting our local tree species. they should have at least researched before spending their funding and putting up signages of the politicians name.

@jan, thanks! an influential person would be better. me... i only have a handful of readers here...

Jan said...

That's a great insight, lemuel. Planting trees not native to our ecosystem is a bad project. You see, you're far more knowledgeable than our esteemed senator. And to think we're giving her millions as taxpayer's money. What has become of her Research Team staff? Every senator I think has one.

Dee said...

Oh, I share your sentiment. We need a Filipino advocate who'll lead the people to become passionate about saving the environment. In my opinion, most are indifferent to this cause. As if they don't care at all. Most of the time, I see people who just throws their trash in the streets. Really sad. And frustrating!

lemuel said...

@jan, i don't think the senator's research staff did their job. they were only concerned in getting seedlings and looking for sponsors to buy them and plant anywhere. you could actually see their billboards and signages even on the north and south expressways. they get their seedlings at least P 5-10 each and they sell it around P 20-40 each. its really a fund raising project for the senator's presidential bid.

@dee, good thing there are now programs for the youth informing them littering is bad for the environment. we actually observed that littering was mostly done by adults from 20-40 years old