500 volunteers join ‘Protect the Bay Coastal Clean-up’

Subic Bay Freeport – Five hundred volunteers joined the 3rd Protect the Bay Coastal Clean-up led by Redondo Peninsula Energy (RP Energy) in Sitio Kinabuksan, Brgy. Cawag, Subic in line with the International Coastal Clean-up Day.

The activity was attended by students of the nearby school, residents and local officials.

(From left to right) Meralco PowerGen VP for External Affairs Litz Santana, RP Energy Corporate Social Responsibility Officer Jason Gavina, SBMA Administrator Atty. Wilma Eisma and Director Chito Lahom led the Protect the Bay Coastal Clean-up in Sitio Kinabuksan, Brgy. Cawag

“Beyond doing a clean-up, we want to instill environmental awareness among the youth. We use this as a venue to also teach them about proper waste segregation and recycling. In other words, start them young.” says RP Energy Corporate Social Responsibility Officer Jason Gavina.

RP Energy, in partnership with Kinabuksan Integrated School, also launched the Basura-Palit-Gamit-Eskwela program, a spin-off project wherein students can exchange collected recyclables and other trash for school supplies.

Meralco PowerGen VP for External Affairs Litz Santana says “We are happy that the Protect the Bay Initiative has become a multi-sectoral effort and platform, engaging volunteers from the government, to parents, to fisherfolks. It is them who will sustain the success of this program.”

Protect the Bay Initiative is RP Energy’s flagship program for the environment and its goal is to build a community of volunteers and organizations that will promote environmental stewardship and create sustainable livelihood within the Subic Bay communities.

School Principal Alex Viado quips “We actually consider this as a best-practice in our school and we have adopted this program in our curriculum. Since we launched the Protect the Bay Initiative, we are now doing a monthly clean-up drive led by our own students.”

Launched in April, Protect the Bay Initiative is supported by DENR, Philippine Coast Guard, CENRO-Olongapo, Zambales PENRO, SBMA, Subic LGU, Cawag LGU, DepEd Subic, Kinabuksan Integrated School Parent Teacher and Community Association, Rotary Club of Quezon City, Rotary Club of Freeport Zone, Junior Chamber International-Olongapo, Philippine Coast Guard Auxiliary, Rotaract Club of Kolehiyo Ng Subic, Rotaract Club of Subic Bay Freeport, Calapandayaan Fisherfolk Cooperative, Subic Bay Integrated Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Management Council, among others.

Simultaneous to the event, SBMA Ecology, with support from RP Energy, also led a coastal clean-up along the Boardwalk participated by the different locators and employees within Subic Bay Freeport Zone. Twenty eight (28) boats manned by fisherfolks of Subic and Olongapo participated for the offshore clean up activity.

RP Energy is the developer of a 2×300 megawatt power plant in Brgy. Cawag, Subic, Zambales. It is a consortium composed of Meralco PowerGen, Aboitiz Power, and Taiwan Cogeneration International Corporation. (Dante M. Salvana)

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