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Students to play larger role in campaign vs global warming, climate change - Bunye

Manila (30 April) -- Filipino students are expected to play a larger role in the campaign against global warming and climate change once the Department of Education implements President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s recent order of incorporating into the public school Science curriculum subjects dealing with these two weather phenomena, according to Press Secretary and Presidential Spokesperson Ignacio R. Bunye.

The President issued the directive during the celebration of Earth Day in Malacañang last April 23, so that "our young will be aware of global warming and other climate change phenomena."

In his column "The View From the Palace" which comes out tomorrow (Monday), Bunye said the government expects Filipino students to take a major stand against global warming and climate change "perhaps because the young are more responsive than their elders."

"They (the students) will be at the forefront of a massive Green Philippines Environmental Plan, which includes: reforestation; preservation of our reefs and waterways; scrubbing the land and air of pollutants that endanger the health of our citizens; and energy conservation," Bunye added.

On the topic of reforestation, Bunye said that the President would visit New Zealand in May to discuss New Zealand’s continuing assistance and support in the Philippines’ environmental programs, as well as how that country’s successful and booming eco-tourism industry can be replicated in the Philippines.

New Zealand has been a firm supporter of the reforestation program in Bukidnon and the Philippines still has much to learn "as they (New Zealand) are definitely a leading example of a tourism industry anchored on the country’s natural beauty and outdoor pursuits," the Press Secretary said.

Bunye also pointed out that the President had signed a Presidential Proclamation establishing a critical habitat and eco-tourism area within the coastal lagoon of the cities of Las Piñas and Parañaque and ensuring the maintenance of necessary ecological services from peripheral areas as her firm commitment "to preserve our reefs and waterways."

In the implementation of anti-pollution initiatives, Bunye stressed that "the focus shall be on ridding our barangays and cities of trash, establishing urban parks and recreation areas, purifying our water and cleaning up industrial sites that are not only health hazards but eyesores."

On energy independence, Bunye said the President called for the acceleration of the bio-fuels program to bolster investments and innovation as well as self-reliance, while keeping the environment clean. (OPS) [top]

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