Sec. Reyes launches Green Philippine Highways
By Rose B. Palacio
Davao City (1 August) -- Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Angelo Reyes is expected to arrive in Davao City today to lead the launching of the Green Philippines Highways at the Davao City Trade & Convention Center, F Torres Street, Davao City.
Green Philippines Highways which is a program of the Arroyo Administration has set up plans and programs to join hands with other countries abroad to protect the ozone layer from harmful ozone-depleting substances.
Ozone Depleting Substances or ODS destroys the ozone layer, a thin shield in the atmosphere that blocks the entry of lethal ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun which cause skin cancer, cataract, damages to the immune system and destruction of microscopic planktons, the basic food of fishes and marine life.
The most common ODS are CFCs and halons. CFCs or "Freon" are used in air conditioners, refrigerators and aerosols while halons are used in fire extinguishers. The Philippines is not a producer of ODS but imports these products from other countries.
According to the report of the "United Nations Environment Programme/World Meteorological Organization (UNEP/WMO) Scientific Assessment of Ozone Deplition: 2002", the Antartic Ozone hole discovered during the 1980s will disappear by 2050 provided all the provisions of the Montreal Protocol are strictly adhered to by all parties, the Philippines included.
The Arroyo Administration has stepped up government's campaign against the entry of substances that are harmful to the environment. The Administration has tasked the DENR through the EMB, the DOF and Bureau of Customs to issue rules and regulations relative to the import, export, processing, storage or sale of Ozone Depleting Substances and its alternatives to registered ODS importers. (PIA) [top]