Philippine Daily Inquirer
Passion to Serve the Community and Environment PASSION TO SERVE THE COMMUNITY AND ENVIRONMENT
Corporate social responsibility efforts are typically done by doling out cash and other goods to marginalized sectors of the society. While they may be well-intentioned, it is vaguely defined by some major companies and the long-term value of these initiatives are often lacking
For the ICCP Group, its 30 years of community involvement and continuing environmental protection are a testament to the Group’s strong commitment and respect for the environment and the welfare of the people in the community in which it operates.
“We have long held the belief that doing ‘well’ for our shareholders goes hand in hand with doing ‘well’ for our customers, communities and the planet. We believe that being a trusted corporate citizen is the bedrock of the company’s business, expressed clearly not only in its values and mission but in the company’s practices every day,” says Guillermo D. Luchangco, founder and chairman and CEO of the ICCP Group, an aggregation of com- panies engaged in investment banking, venture capital, industrial estate development, township development, and exposition facility complex management.
Empowering people, Strengthening communities
Since it established its first industrial estate project in the late 80s, ICCP Group has already recognized the need for a sustainable development. When the company built the Light Industry & Science Park of the Philippines (LISP I) in Cabuyao, Laguna, they took a serious responsibility in making a difference in the society and this means empowering local communities by allowing them to get involved in community development initiatives.
“It was in 1991 when we started getting the people in this community involved in our sustainability efforts. From being the poorest barangay in the province—they had no running water and no efficient means of transportation—we’ve worked together with them to help them become economically and socially empowered,” Luchangco recalls.
He adds, "What we wanted to do was to produce effective practical solutions to serve the needs of the community."
From attitude formation to job placement, ICCP Group gradually helped these people improve their lives and helped them understand the long-term advantages of these initiatives. Today, there are about 16,000 people from the community that are employed in the companies in the Light Industry and Science Park I (LISP) in Cabuyao. To allow them to be qualified for more job opportunities in these industries in the LISP, ICCP Group conducts regular training, employment assistance and skills enhancement.
Education and Training
ICCP Group has a very massive and successful book distribution and computer education programs to assist the needs of the school children for their education.
Through SPPI, ICCP Group also helps families and individuals by conducting livelihood programs to help them turn their skills and abilities into a profitable business. From rag making, food carts, and other small businesses, people have learned how to be more productive and properly invest their time and resources.
One of the longest running and most successful programs of the company are its charitable missions and basic medical and dental programs to poor families in different communities.
Also, in Barangay La Mesa in Calamba, where LISP II is located, SPPI donated water supply system to help the people have a clean and stable water supply. SPPI industrial parks also have reliable firefighting equipment to ensure the safety of the entire community.
ICCP Group sees its corporate citizenship role as a commitment to having a positive influence within the communities it operates. “Being a responsible company, we are aware of our ability to influence the communities as a socio-economic and regional platform for advancement. Our residential and industrial estate locations constitute an economic and social growth engine in the development of these areas,” Luchangco stresses.
Minimizing Our Environmental Footprint
The most important contribution of ICCP in the society is its strong and continuous involvement in environmental protection. These sustainable development efforts are done as part of its sincere commitment to the environment.
Industrial estates under SPPI have always maintained a well-protected environment for light to medium industries with clean and non-polluting, environment-friendly manufacturing operations, as well as support industries. Because of its unrelenting efforts to empower local communities and its strong advocacy to the environment, SPPI has received numerous awards and recognitions from renowned organizations. The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) awarded SPPI for its outstanding role in community development work and environmental management. It was also the first developer of industrial estates to have achieved ISO 9002 and 14001 status in the country. It also has the OHSAS 18001 for occupa-
tional health and safety management. Water Stewardship
Among the most remarkable contributions of ICCP Group to the environment is its centralized waste water treatment plant project, which it pioneered in the country. SPPI’s industrial parks in Cabuyao, Calamba, Sto. Tomas, Batangas, and Cebu maintain waste water treatment plants that process effluents with up to 1,000 Biological Oxygen Demand, with a combined capacity of 12,000 cubic meters per day. This stringent process ensures that the wastewater it discharges meets, and in many cases exceeds, standards set by local regulations.
Since SPPI’s successful development of these waste water treatment plants, it has now become a requirement of PEZA to other industrial estates to set up this facility.
Pioneering Green Initiatives
The ICCP Group has also actively encouraged communities in its industrial estates and property developments to get involved with its green initiatives. Among SPPI’s projects are household scale container organic vegetable raising in support to supplemental feeding in Cabuyao, as well as the recycling of PEP bottles and pots and locally available organic materials that are mostly collected from kitchen wastes.
Because it makes sure that everyone in the industrial park lives by the SPPI’s mission of developing world-class and en- vironment-friendly industrial estates, it also makes sure that the cleanliness and greenness of the entire property is wellmaintained. SPPI employs its environmental management system, which involves air quality management, waste resource management, waste water treatment, solid waste management, association of pollution control officers, and environmental outreach programs.
To ensure that it follows proper environmental standards, SPPI does not allow smoke-belching vehicles and public utility vehicles in its property. Every industrial park of SPPI has e-shuttles for employees to make sure that they avoid air and noise pollution in the entire compound.
“We regularly set up our pollution control equipment to check smoke emission of vehicles coming in our industrial parks,” says Luchangco.
SPPI also ensures that companies that set up their facilities in its industrial parks follow environmental standards, and it regularly assesses the performance of every company in its parks. Luchangco adds, “We have to turn down companies that don’t qualify under our standards.”
Encouragingly, SPPI has also attracted support from different organizations and local governments.
For Pueblo de Oro Development Corporation , the residential and commercial property development arm of the ICCP Group, green initiatives such as regular tree planting forays and preservation of its 40-hectare urban rainforest in Cagayan de Oro ensure that all properties and natural environments are preserved and protected.
Moreover, quality and responsible engineering has made all of Pueblo de Oro’s developments flood-free. Pueblo de Oro took the precaution of having a flood water study conducted prior to commencing its development activities in San Fernando, Pampanga, thus, spending close to P150 million to elevate its 30-hectare residential community by 1.5 to 2 meters above its original level and introduce an efficient drainage system that allows rainwater to spread through different canals and freely run off. In addition, Pueblo de Oro township in Cagayan de Oro has built an outflow and detention pond in the lower portion of the Township to contain water runoff from the plateau to the valley before dispersal into the creeks, thus helping protect the areas downhill from flooding.
It is because of these initiatives, which the Company had adopted from the time it began developing its residential projects almost two decades back, that its residents continue to enjoy a safe, worry-free lifestyle in an environment conducive to raising a family.
ICCP Group continues to become the standard model of wholistic environmental programs for industries and locators to be able to more efficiently perform their operations in a sustainable manner. Also, a stronger commitment to implementing meaningful community development programs like the initiatives of the ICCP Group mark a significant step toward achieving a more prosperous and healthier future.