Updated: Dec 3, 2022
Article from Manila Times
Photos by Lighthouse Legacy Foundation
By Eireene Jairee Gomez September 24, 2022
Over 30 organizations gathered on September 17 at Subic Bay to gather debris and trash along its coastline and waters. Armed with cleaning kits provided by Coca-Cola Philippines and taught to properly segregate waste collected from the cleanup by the Lighthouse Legacy Foundation, some 430 volunteers were undeterred by the rain, and joined many other groups and organizations in the country who participated in the annual International Coastal Cleanup (ICC).
Employees of Coca-Cola Philippines from Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City and Coca-Cola Beverages Philippines' North Luzon Commercial Unit also joined this year's ICC.
Organized by Coca-Cola Philippines, in partnership with Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) and the Lighthouse Legacy Foundation, this year's ICC activity at Subic Bay helped to deliver on the ongoing commitment of Coca-Cola Philippines to create partnerships that promote a debris-free environment, consistent with the World Without Waste vision of the company.
"At Coca-Cola, we recognize our responsibility to help solve the global plastic waste problem. To help create a World Without Waste, we have a global goal to help collect and recycle the equivalent of every bottle and can we sell by 2030," said Jonah de Lumen-Pernia, director for the Philippines Franchise, Coca-Cola Asean and South Pacific.
Atty. Cashmer Dirampaten, director for public affairs, communications, and sustainability, Coca-Cola Franchise East Region, Coca-Cola ASEAN and South Pacific, for his part, said: "We are grateful to all the volunteers who traveled to Subic, brought their family and friends, and chose to spend their Saturday with us doing the coastal cleanup."
The ICC is a global movement where volunteers from more than 90 countries remove debris from shorelines, rivers, lakes and waterways; raise environmental awareness; and provide information that will guide and influence decision-making bodies and industries in developing smart solutions to the persisting marine pollution.
Meanwhile, SBMA Chairman Rolen Paulino emphasized the importance of working together to ensure a sustainable future and healthy environment for the next generation.
"We are doing these cleanup initiatives for your generation. I truly hope that we can leave a clean, healthy environment for you. I hope we can keep our rivers clean, and our beaches safe for swimming," he said in Filipino.
The annual ICC event is an opportunity to reinvigorate the spirit of volunteerism among Filipinos by enlisting their participation in helping reduce marine litter. "It is important for the Philippines to act quickly on the matter because failure to do so would mean irreparable damage to our marine resources," said Zed Avecilla, executive director, Lighthouse Legacy Foundation.
This year's ICC activity in Subic was able to collect 733.46 kilos of marine debris, equivalent to 295 sacks of waste. Recyclable plastics will be brought to partner recycling organizations, such as Precious Plastics Philippines and Sentinel Upcycling Technologies, while the rest will be considered for waste to energy or will be brought to landfills.
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