September 08, 2023 Friday
Tons of plastic waste are suffocating coastal and mangrove ecosystems, such as in the Tanza Marine Tree Park in Navotas.
MANILA, 8 September 2023 — The Climate Change Commission (CCC) commits to safeguarding mangrove ecosystems against the dual threat of climate change and plastic pollution.
Mangroves, found in many coastal areas around the world, are ecosystems that serve as crucial carbon sinks. It also protects coastal communities from storm surges, and provides habitat for various species of animals.
However, plastic pollution poses an immediate threat to mangroves. Plastic waste disrupts their growth and function, ultimately leading to their degradation as well as to the animals that rely on these habitats for survival. Its ability to sequester carbon and act as a natural coastal defense is also compromised.
“Recognizing the benefits of mangroves, we must understand that enhancing our environment for improved climate resilience demands cross-sector collaboration,” said CCC Vice Chairperson and Executive Director Robert E.A. Borje.
To mark the National Cleanup Month this September, a coastal cleanup drive was conducted at Tanza Marine Tree Park, Navotas City, led by Nestlé Philippines.
Tanza Marine Tree Park, also known as "Isla Pulo," stands as the guardian of Metro Manila's last naturally grown mangrove forest, stretching over 26 hectares along the Manila Bay coastline.
A total of 1,320 kilograms of waste composed of PET bottles, sachets, styrofoams, and rubbers, were collected by 140 volunteers from the CCC, Nestlé, GMA Sparkle, Pure Oceans, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine National Police, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and local community members.
“As we clear these shores of debris, let us also gather hope, determination, and a renewed sense of purpose. Let us leave knowing our potential to shape a brighter, greener, and more sustainable future,” Borje added.
In observance of National Cleanup Month, the CCC encourages individuals and communities to organize and partake in cleanup activities and similar initiatives to protect and conserve not only mangroves but all ecosystems, moving towards a future free from plastic pollution and resilient against climate change.
For more information on the CCC’s climate mainstreaming activities, visit https://climate.gov.ph and https://facebook.com/cccphl.