Paris Climate Deal, Our Natural Resources and BEAM (Part 1)


Something historical and monumental took place that elates environmentalists, climate is getting taken more seriously (or we are only made to believe so) and observers say that the good thing is we have a goal and the world is working towards it. Close to two hundred countries signed the Paris Climate Deal just recently.
For centuries now, we (both industrialized and industrializing countries) have been releasing so much CO2 and “[we’ll have to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere]”. To be fair, some countries have already started cutting Green House Gas (GHG)emissions, butt it is just one step, the next important thing is to keep working on it,

“Then society will need to continue further, to negative emissions. That is, removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and storing it somewhere else. There are various options here, from planting trees and keeping restored forest in perpetuity, enhancing uptake in soils, or using biomass energy in power plants then storing the carbon dioxide underground (so-called Bio-Energy with Carbon Capture and Storage). Expect to hear a lot more about this.” There are Five Things to Know about the Paris Climate Deal:

This focus on climate means rethinking how we employ our natural resources. Let me add that we also need to align our use of other resources to be consistent and these include our cultural and anthropo-social resources. In the Philippines (and this is apparently true in other countries as well) most of the businesses seem to be thinking that our land, air and water resources are inexhaustible but this cannot be farther from the truth. Our lands are not expanding, but the people who use it keep increasing and as populations rise, the generation of solid wastes and other pollutants, including gaseous wastes, keep increasing as well. In Payatas, Quezon City, the garbage accumulated is now higher than the highest peak in the area. And the fact is, all the refuse thrown there were placed in a deep depression, but over the years that deep curve got filled on a daily basis until the giant trucks, unloading the trashes of millions of Quezon City residents has become like matchboxes. Solid wastes do not only degrade our land, it also emits GHG. The biodegradable component of our wastes emit gases, including CO2 and methane, which is 21 times more harmful than carbon dioxide. Solid wastes affect our climate through this.
Another concern on land use management is the conservation of our remaining forests. Today, there is only a small portion left of our rainforests remaining protected from illegal logging. As in other countries, illegal logging is rampant in the Philippines. It has to end. I will talk more on this in my future digi-scribings.

For now, it may be sufficient to say that businesses contribute on the generation of solid wastes and in the mismanagement of our land resources. Yet this situation also creates opportunities to build more enterprises out of genuine ecological solid waste management and responsible land use. More ideas of climate friendly business and enterprise administration to refuse management, including the reduction of solid waste generation to negligible levels, would be of great help. There is not yet enough green business ideas, thoughts and opportunities at hand. More are needed and entrepreneurs are on call in this.

More so, Filipino environmentalists are watching the GOP for consistent and impactful implementation of the environmental laws of the land, especially those that directly or indirectly affect our climate.


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