SUBIC BAY

SUBIC BAY

METROPOLITAN AUTHORITY

SUBIC BAY METROPOLITAN AUTHORITY
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Over 13,000 volunteers join coastal cleanup
Sep 18, 2012

Subic Bay Freeport - More than 13,000 volunteers showed up for the annual International Coastal Cleanup that took place in 10 sites along the entire coast of Zambales last weekend.

The coastal clean up, organized by the Lighthouse Marina Resort is part of the international coastal cleanup effort of The Ocean Conservancy to protect the world's oceans from harmful debris, which make their way to coastlines from local beaches to waterways and inland areas.

"We started four years ago with around 600 volunteers cleaning up mainly the boardwalk area. Now, the movement expanded to include the entire Zambales coast, including a pilot area for the inland clean up in Barangay Mabayuan, Olongapo City," Jun Avecilla, Zone Coordinator of the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC), explained.

Most of the garbage collected by the volunteers were plastic bags and containers, cigarette butts, sanitary napkins, diapers, and even old tires.

"All these garbage and debris along the coastlines do not fall from the sky, they fall from human hands. They come from the communities such as ours and this is why it�s important to bring the activity to the barangays," Robert Ferrer, chairman of Brgy. Mabayuan, said.

With all the Rotary Clubs of Olongapo City, Zambales, PMAP and JCI Olongapo joining as site captains, the total cleanup area increased from 4 kilometers to more than 30 kilometers of coastline and inland waterways.

Metro Pacific Investment Corporation's (MPIC) Shore it up! also expanded the event to two days, bringing in more than 120 divers for an offshore cleanup and artificial reef laying on the second day.

"We were swamped by volunteers who needed data cards and cleaning implements," said Mariel Flores, president of the Rotary Club of Downtown Olongapo, adding "it was at the same time heartwarming to see them here doing their share for the environment."

Organizers say that this activity is a kick off to a bigger effort to preserve and enhance the waters of Subic Bay.

"Aside from the debris, we need to control effluents and other harmful elements that are slowly building up from residential communities and other economic activities," Avecilla explained.

Noting that Subic Bay formerly hosted the biggest American naval facility outside the mainland United States for almost a century, the ICC zone coordinator stressed, "The same economic might put to bear to preserve the quality of the waters within the bay. After all, this is the single biggest and most important resource that we all share".

The program, he added, aims to identify the pollutants and its sources, determine a base line and from there, plan and implement measures to control, if not, totally stop their entry into the bay.

"This effort requires the action of a consortium of individuals, groups, companies, and government agencies. The overwhelming response to the clean up show that we, as a community, are one step ahead into realizing this program," John Bayarong, president of the Rotary Cub of Subic Bay said. (30)


There's hope yet for the environment, as evidenced by the huge turnout of civic-minded and environment-conscious individuals and groups during the recent coastal clean-up activity at Subic Bay.

There's hope yet for the environment, as evidenced by the huge turnout of civic-minded and environment-conscious individuals and groups during the recent coastal clean-up activity at Subic Bay.


News 2012

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