Environment lawyer Antonio Oposa Jr. yesterday said he is challenging Mayor Evelio Leonardia and the rest of the Bacolod officials to ban the use of plastics in the city, saying that they are non biodegradable and cause the clogging of waterways.
Oposa said he is also urging Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. to look into the creation of rainwater catchments to prevent flooding in Negros Occidental.
People should also go into urban gardening for food needs, Oposa said.
“We need to go back to the basics,” he said, to fight off the ill effects of climate change.
Oposa, who was at the Negros Occidental Capitol to discuss measures for the protection of the Visayan Sea, pointed out that meteorologists predict weather conditions to worsen in the future and steps must be taken now to mitigate its ill effects.
Meteorologists have pointed out that in 20 years the foul weather experienced in 2010 will be considered tame, he said.
Oposa also cited the statement of Graciano Yumul Jr., officer in charge of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, that the weather has been acting so “strange” since the country entered the La Niña period that it changes almost every hour.
He cited the need to take steps to prevent flooding such as the banning of plastics and the creation of rainwater catchments in Negros Occidental.
He said Bacolod City can adopt the ordinance of Muntinlupa banning the use of plastics, which is now being implemented.
Oposa said he has also suggested to the governor to make Negros Occidental a model for the creation catchments that can be turned into lakes and ponds.
Flooding happens because excess water does not have receptacles, he said.
“We cannot do anything about heavy rains anymore, let’s provide receptacles,” he said, which will serve the functions of lakes, pond and wetlands.
He said a cachtment area can also be created to prevent flooding in Santa Clara Subdivision in Bacolod City.
“Human beings, being the stupid species that we are, closed our ponds, lakes so the excess water has no place to go,” he noted.*CPG