More than 10,000 volunteers showed their support and cooperation in the local celebration of the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) Day yesterday by cleaning up the rivers, creeks, canals, and coastal areas across the four provinces in Central Visayas

Nearly 30,000 kilos of trash were collected in a one day activity aimed at removing the trash or garbage that threatens wildlife and humans thus affecting the economy, tourism and navigation.

"This year's 30th ICC theme "Bayanihan para sa malinis na katubigan at karagatan" amplifies the Department of Environment and Natural Resources' (DENR) pursuit with the various partners and stakeholders in cleaning up our water bodies by mobilizing our local communities to achieve a cleanier and healthier environment," said DENR 7 Regional Director Dr Isabelo R Montejo

Montejo said tourism sector will be affected as tourists will be discouraged to get around our coastal areas because of heaps or piles of trash and eventually no income or livelihood will be generated.

The most common items found were cigarette butts, food wrappers, plastic bottles and caps, straws, grocery bags, glass bottles and beverage cans.

The ICC is a 30-year-old global event initiated by the Ocean Conservancy, a non-government organization based in Washington D.C., United States. Its aim is to engage people to remove trash from beaches and waterways around the world, identify the sources of the debris and chance the behavioral patterns that contribute to pollution.

In Barangay Calajoan, Minglanilla, Cebu, more than 4,000 volunteers gathered more than 300 sacks of garbage after a three-hour cleanup co-organized by the Civil Service Commission-7 in celebration of the Philippine Service Month

"This is part of the celebration of the Philippine Service Month as we strongly encourage our state workers to take an active role in the cleaning up of our water bodies," said CSC-7 Regional Director Atty Karin Litz P Zerna

At least 18 government agencies participated to include CSC 7; DENR7; Minglanilla municipal government; Talisay City government; Social Security System; Government Service Insurance System; Bureau of Jail Management and Penology; Department of the Interior and Local Government; Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources; Bureau of Fire Protection; Cebu Port Authority; Land Transportation, Franchising and Regulatory Board; Philippine Health Insurance Corporation; Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines; Department of Labor and Employment; Abellana National School; Department of Science and Technology; Bureau of Local Government Finance; and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency

"We hope that this will not stop in ICC but it has to continue by institutionalizing good sanitation and solid waste management practices through education and actual participation in the management of our water bodies and reducing the pollution load," Montejo added

Also, private partners gave their support to include Concrete Solutions Incorporated; Franciscan Friars of Charity; National Grid Corporation of the Philippines; Pepsi; Popular Feedmill Corporation; Precious Child Leaning Center; Ramcheschel Bakeshop; Rotaract Club of Cebu Fuente; Savvysherpa Asia Incorporated; and DHL Supply Chain Philippines Incorporated

Since the Philippines joined the effort in 1994, it has so far registered 3.39 million volunteers or about 32 percent of the total 10.5 million volunteers the ICC had mobilized worldwide since its inaugural observance in 1986.

Last year, about 562,000 volunteers from 91 countries joined the cleanup, 107,695 of them are from the Philippines. Filipino volunteers have removed 208,438 kilos of trash along 335 kilometers of shorelines and waterways.

Based on the annual report of the Ocean Conservancy, the country collected 240,360 kilos in 2010; 485,091 in 2011; more than 1.3 million in 2012 and 734,131 in 2013.

In 2003, Presidential Proclamation No. 470 was issued declaring the third Saturday of September of every year as ICC Day.


Creation of an RDC Environment Committee

The Economic Development Committee in its first quarter meeting, passed a Resolution for the creation of an RDC Environment Committee to focus on the environmental and sustainability and risk resilience aspects of the Development Plans, Policies, Programs, Projects (D4Ps).

On June 27, the RDC Environmental Committee Members convened for the first time for the organizational meeting and levelling off presided by the DENR 7 Regional Director Gilbert C. Gonzales, committee's co-chair at NEDA 7 Conference Hall, Sudlon, Lahug, Cebu City.



Photo Releases

Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary. OIWS is the country’s first wetland of international importance for waterfowl declared under RAMSAR. This wetland area is now a critical stopover for tens of thousands of migratory birds travelling the East Asian Migratory Flyway, one of the most important shorebird and water bird migratory flyways in the world.


Hidden Bird Paradise. Mahaba Island in Talibon, Bohol is an undiscovered bird’s paradise. Mahaba Island is part of Barangay Calituban, one of eight island barangays of the Municipality of Talibon, which is located on the northwest side of Bohol.

Counting the gains of NGP. One of the most successful and remarkable milestones of National Greening Program (NGP) in Central Visayas is the established Coffee Plantations in San Pascual, Ubay, Bohol established in 2011 by the Ubay Federated Tree Planters Association, Inc. (UFTPAI).

As of today, UFTPAI native coffee is now marketed in Ubay and all other neighboring municipalities in Bohol.

Bugnay Wine. Made and produced by partner people’s organization, the Ubay Federated Tree Planters Association, Inc. (UFTPAI) in San Pascual, Ubay, Bohol

Man-made Molave Forest. One of Siquijor’s pride, the reforestation site is one of the oldest in the country, established in 1937. This 202.15-hectare molave plantation is found in Salagdoong, Maria, Siquijor.

Man-made Molave Forest (Salagdoong, Maria, Siquijor)

Nature’s Mystic Beauty. Lamanoc Island, Anda, Bohol. A newly discovered ecotourism destination in Bohol and is part of the Candijay-Anda-Mabini Mangrove Swamp Forest Reserve and Wilderness Area, a protected area managed by the DENR.

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