Grow gardens, share roads for better environment

The Mindanao Examiner Regional Newspaper - - News - (Ayin Visitacion)

CEBU CITY - Combining whimsical storytelling with tangible plans, 2009 Ramon Magsaysay Awardee lawyer Antonio Oposa, Jr. raised environmental awareness and the benefits of edible gardening and road-sharing during a forum at the University of the Philippines.

Oposa used symbolism and acronyms in sharing his ideas to preserve the environment. He said that in order to restore the LAW (Land, Air, and Water) of Life, give CPR (Conservation, Protection, and Restoration) to the vital organs of life on earth. To do this, he brought up two concrete solutions that everyone can do: edible landscaping and road sharing.

Developing urban permaculture and edible gardens in available spaces such as parking lots will help feed families and have a sustainable source of food, he said. Meanwhile, road sharing involves giving way to pedestrians, setting up bicycle lanes, and improving public transportation which can help ease traffic. These ideas are also found in his book entitled ‘Shooting Stars and Dancing Fish.’

He aims to change the economic mindset of mindless extraction and consumption to “ecocentric” model of CPR. “The problem with us is that we patterned our development after the West and we called it progress. Even a simple basic need as food, we have turned into money,” Oposa said.

He also said that the people can make use of the law and start initiatives in their communities through the Local Government Code Sections 120-127. It cites that at least 1,000 people in provinces and cities, 100 people in municipalities, and 50 people in barangays may file a petition with the Sanggunian to propose the adoption, enactment, repeal, or amendment of an ordinance.petitioners can invoke their power of initiative if there is no favorable action within 30 days of the filing of petition.

Oposa is known for representing Mother Nature and future generations in the court to preserve and restore the environment. He also won the Supreme Court case in 2008 which compelled government agencies to clean up the Manila Bay.

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