Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Global Warming – Why Should We Care?

The drive for awareness on global warming in the Philippines is not an easy feat. Since us Filipinos have a tendency to learn things the hard way. We forgive easily. We forget too quickly. And despite its importance, the issue of global warming in the Philippines is not a priority. Our Waste Management Act, which mandates every city to have a proper waste management, is being implemented since 2007 but is anyone complying on the standards set? The methane gas being emitted by mountains of garbage in poorly managed landfills contributes to greenhouse effect. The illegal logging of trees that could counter the effects of global warming is still rampant. Studies show that 5 million hectares of our forest have been stripped and that the deforestation rate of 119,000 hectares for every year means that in a decade our forests will be in sorry state. The carbon dioxide emissions from our vehicles, what with their old engines, compete among the worst all over the world. The toxic emissions from factories that don’t follow environmental guidelines are an unwelcome contribution as well. Are we even aware that we are actually, unknowingly, digging our own grave?

Of course, those who are stepping up and driving awareness on global warming in the Philippines should be credited. President Aquino affirmed our commitment to follow the international guidelines in an effort to keep the global warming below 2 degrees Celsius when he attended the UN Assembly. But we need more than just affirmations and laws being passed and implemented. We need to make global warming in the Philippines a major issue and a top concern. It should be a priority more than useless exposes and pathetic clashes of the church and the state. They should stop paying global warming in the Philippines lip service. The hardworking government officials (I believe a few exists!) and concerned organizations can only do so much in making us understand that we need to change our ways.

I fervently hope that it would not take a major disaster before we start taking responsibility to our actions. While we can only hope that our government will really step up and implement laws that will minimize global warming, we can also help in our own ways. It won’t take a lot to “reduce, reuse, and recycle” our garbage at home. We’d be the one to benefit if we follow good practice in conserving energy.

Why? Remember that we are an archipelago. And the rise in earth’s temperature means melting of ice caps in the North and South Pole. It results to a rise in the sea level as well. It is actually happening right now. And if we don’t do anything and it continues at the current rate it is going, our country may soon disappear in the world map. Come to think of it.

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