Jan Hilado with Bo Sanchez
Bo Sanchez
presents the CEBU INTERNET MARKETING WORKSHOP (Hands-on training on how to Make Money Online)
For more details of the workshop, CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Top 10 Things You Can Do to Reduce Global Warming

Top 10 Things You Can Do to Reduce Global Warming

By Larry West, About.com

Burning fossil fuels such as natural gas, coal, oil and gasoline raises the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and carbon dioxide is a major contributor to the greenhouse effect and global warming.

You can help to reduce the demand for fossil fuels, which in turn reduces global warming, by using energy more wisely. Here are 10 simple actions you can take to help reduce global warming.

1. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Do your part to reduce waste by choosing reusable products instead of disposables. Buying products with minimal packaging (including the economy size when that makes sense for you) will help to reduce waste. And whenever you can, recycle paper, plastic, newspaper, glass and aluminum cans. If there isn't a recycling program at your workplace, school, or in your community, ask about starting one. By recycling half of your household waste, you can save 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide annually.

2. Use Less Heat and Air Conditioning

Adding insulation to your walls and attic, and installing weather stripping or caulking around doors and windows can lower your heating costs more than 25 percent, by reducing the amount of energy you need to heat and cool your home.

Turn down the heat while you’re sleeping at night or away during the day, and keep temperatures moderate at all times. Setting your thermostat just 2 degrees lower in winter and higher in summer could save about 2,000 pounds of carbon dioxide each year.

3. Change a Light Bulb

Wherever practical, replace regular light bulbs with compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs. Replacing just one 60-watt incandescent light bulb with a CFL will save you $30 over the life of the bulb. CFLs also last 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs, use two-thirds less energy, and give off 70 percent less heat.

If every U.S. family replaced one regular light bulb with a CFL, it would eliminate 90 billion pounds of greenhouse gases, the same as taking 7.5 million cars off the road.

4. Drive Less and Drive Smart

Less driving means fewer emissions. Besides saving gasoline, walking and biking are great forms of exercise. Explore your community’s mass transit system, and check out options for carpooling to work or school.

When you do drive, make sure your car is running efficiently. For example, keeping your tires properly inflated can improve your gas mileage by more than 3 percent. Every gallon of gas you save not only helps your budget, it also keeps 20 pounds of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.

5. Buy Energy-Efficient Products

When it's time to buy a new car, choose one that offers good gas mileage. Home appliances now come in a range of energy-efficient models, and compact florescent bulbs are designed to provide more natural-looking light while using far less energy than standard light bulbs.

Avoid products that come with excess packaging, especially molded plastic and other packaging that can't be recycled. If you reduce your household garbage by 10 percent, you can save 1,200 pounds of carbon dioxide annually.

6. Use Less Hot Water

Set your water heater at 120 degrees to save energy, and wrap it in an insulating blanket if it is more than 5 years old. Buy low-flow showerheads to save hot water and about 350 pounds of carbon dioxide yearly. Wash your clothes in warm or cold water to reduce your use of hot water and the energy required to produce it. That change alone can save at least 500 pounds of carbon dioxide annually in most households. Use the energy-saving settings on your dishwasher and let the dishes air-dry.

7. Use the "Off" Switch

Save electricity and reduce global warming by turning off lights when you leave a room, and using only as much light as you need. And remember to turn off your television, video player, stereo and computer when you're not using them.

It's also a good idea to turn off the water when you're not using it. While brushing your teeth, shampooing the dog or washing your car, turn off the water until you actually need it for rinsing. You'll reduce your water bill and help to conserve a vital resource.

8. Plant a Tree

If you have the means to plant a tree, start digging. During photosynthesis, trees and other plants absorb carbon dioxide and give off oxygen. They are an integral part of the natural atmospheric exchange cycle here on Earth, but there are too few of them to fully counter the increases in carbon dioxide caused by automobile traffic, manufacturing and other human activities. A single tree will absorb approximately one ton of carbon dioxide during its lifetime.

9. Get a Report Card from Your Utility Company

Many utility companies provide free home energy audits to help consumers identify areas in their homes that may not be energy efficient. In addition, many utility companies offer rebate programs to help pay for the cost of energy-efficient upgrades.

10. Encourage Others to Conserve

Share information about recycling and energy conservation with your friends, neighbors and co-workers, and take opportunities to encourage public officials to establish programs and policies that are good for the environment.

These 10 steps will take you a long way toward reducing your energy use and your monthly budget. And less energy use means less dependence on the fossil fuels that create greenhouse gases and contribute to global warming.


Saturday, March 21, 2009

Switch Your Lights Off On Earth Hour

One thing we can do to help our country is by participating in the Earth hour on march 28. We Filipinos must be take action on this day to save our planet and country from Global Warming.

This year, Earth Hour has been transformed into the world’s first global election, between Earth and global warming.

For the first time in history, people of all ages, nationalities, race and background have the opportunity to use their light switch as their vote – Switching off your lights is a vote for Earth, or leaving them on is a vote for global warming. WWF are urging the world to VOTE EARTH and reach the target of 1 billion votes, which will be presented to world leaders at the Global Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen 2009.

This meeting will determine official government policies to take action against global warming, which will replace the Kyoto Protocol. It is the chance for the people of the world to make their voice heard.

Earth Hour began in Sydney in 2007, when 2.2 million homes and businesses switched off their lights for one hour. In 2008 the message had grown into a global sustainability movement, with 50 million people switching off their lights. Global landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, Rome’s Colosseum, the Sydney Opera House and the Coca Cola billboard in Times Square all stood in darkness.

In 2009, Earth Hour is being taken to the next level, with the goal of 1 billion people switching off their lights as part of a global vote. Unlike any election in history, it is not about what country you’re from, but instead, what planet you’re from. VOTE EARTH is a global call to action for every individual, every business, and every community. A call to stand up and take control over the future of our planet. Over 74 countries and territories have pledged their support to VOTE EARTH during Earth Hour 2009, and this number is growing everyday.

We all have a vote, and every single vote counts. Together we can take control of the future of our planet, for future generations.

VOTE EARTH by simply switching off your lights for one hour, and join the world for Earth Hour.

Saturday, March 28, 8:30-9:30pm.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Hands off our rice

Hands off our rice!"

Defending Asia's most loved food

18 March 2009
Hundreds of Greenpeace supporters, volunteers and farmers plant  organic rice in a bid to create the first ever ‘art ‘ rice field in  Ratchaburi province. The 10-rai rice field in will grow into an  artwork design in the next 4 months depicting farmers harvesting rice.

GMO rice threatens consumer choice, farmers' livelihoods and the environment.

Enlarge Image

International — The iconic Philippine rice terraces in Ifugao, a UNESCO World Heritage site, have been declared a 'GMO - Free Zone'. And the first 'rice art' was planted in Thailand as a symbol of solidarity against genetically modified rice.

Genetically modified rice has not been approved for human consumption or commercial propagation anywhere in the world. But an application for the approval of a genetically modified rice variety is pending at the Philippine Department of Agriculture and despite Thailand prohibiting all GMOs (genetically modified organisms) we are increasingly worried about powerful agro-chemical companies pushing for this ban to be lifted.

GMO-free Philippines

To commemorate the Ifugao declaration made by the local Governor and Mayor, Greenpeace volunteers together with local guides unfurled a giant banner with the words “GMO-Free Zone” at the site. There was also a public unveiling of a permanent marker containing the declaration featuring speeches from the local dignitaries.

“The Ifugao people, guardians of this living cultural heritage of humanity, shall keep the Ifugao Rice Terraces a GMO-Free Zone as it has always been for generations. The Ifugaos shall protect the Ifugao Rice Terraces from GMO contamination and other forms of interventions that would diminish the integrity and universal value of the Ifugao Rice Terraces, so that it will continue to be a living testimony of the harmonious relationship of man and nature,” said Governor Baguilat.

The Ifugao Rice Terraces, with a total area of about 10,360 square kilometers, have been in existence for more than 3000 years. In 1995, they were inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage List as “a living cultural landscape of great beauty that exemplifies the perfect interweaving of natural and cultural values in a sustainable manner.” Ifugao people have traditionally planted rice in the terraces without the use of harmful chemical fertilizers and pesticides and have freely traded seeds, among them the famous Tinawon organic rice.

A first for Thailand

Hundreds of our supporters, volunteers and farmers planted organic rice in Ratchaburi province, in a bid to create the first work of art made in a rice field in Thailand. We used two varieties of rice seedlings that will generate green and purple colour in the field when fully grown in 4 months -- depicting farmers harvesting rice.

Thailand is a country deeply rooted in farming traditions and farmers are considered the backbone of the nation. Upon our nomination, the Guinness Book of World Records has also certified Thailand as the largest exporter of rice in the world, accounting for 27 percent of all rice traded in world markets.

Since Thailand is a leader in rice farming it should also lead in sustainable ways of growing rice. By going organic, Thailand can show the world that there are innovative natural ways to grow rice and also send the message to agro-chemical companies that toxic pesticides and risky technologies like genetic engineering are unnecessary and unwanted.

GMOs threaten Asian heritage

Our campaign for GMO-free crop and food production is grounded in the principles of sustainability, protection of biodiversity and providing all people access to safe and nutritious food. The rich rice heritage in Asia is threatened by GMO crops that pose risks to biodiversity, human health, farmers’ livelihoods and consumer choices. We're demanding that the government of the Philippines issue an outright ban on GMO crops, especially GMO rice and we are calling on the Thai government to officially reject GMO rice.

Bataan Nuclear Power Plant- revival

On the Proposed Revival of Bataan Nuclear Power Plant PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 02 February 2009 12:02
A position paper submitted to House Committees on Energy and Appropriations

02 February 2009

The Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) is a glaring representation of the country’s fraudulent, wasteful, and useless debts. The Freedom from Debt Coalition (FDC) also sees it as a symbol of the Philippines’ struggle against a debt-driven development strategy – often peppered with rent seeking and cronyism – that different administrations, including the current disposition, have espoused.

To revive the BNPP would be to create greater social deficits and push the Filipino people deeper into the vicious debt and underdevelopment trap. FDC raises serious questions about the immediate rehabilitation, re-commission, and commercial operation of BNPP. We strongly believe that to make the “Monster of Morong” operational would be to gamble away the people’s lives on a lost deal.

Projecting a Shortage: Faulty Rationales

That the BNPP is expected to supply at least 20% of the anticipated power shortage before 2012 of 3,000MW is one of the trumpets that Rep. Mark Cojuangco is blowing. We ask first and foremost where the studies are that support this claim of an impending power shortage as the government’s track record in forecasting electricity has been self serving at worst and dismally inaccurate at best.

In 1993, the Ramos administration Power Development Plan projected a 10% annual growth rate in demand for electricity over the next 10 years. This steep growth in demand failed to materialize, as established by data from the Department of Energy (DoE) for the period 1992- 2003. Aside from that, data show that installed capacity and dependable capacity of generation plants had been greater than demand for the period of 1990-2001, except in 1993 when the country was hit with El Nino that had crippled the hydroelectric plants in Mindanao. Another instance of wrong government forecasts is the Visayas experience, where a citizens’ initiative towards a Multi-Stakeholder Power Development Plan (MSPDP) for Panay was launched . While DoE initially stayed away from this initiative, it has recently recognized this bottom-up planning approach and is now supporting a broadened exercise for Western Visayas. A comparison of DoE projections of demand growth for Western Visayas, and that of the MSPDP shows the latter to be closer to actual demand.

Over-projecting demand has led to an overcapacity situation in the Philippine electricity sector for more than a decade now, and this has been proven to be as expensive – if not more – than a power shortage. As of April 2008, DoE data show that total installed generating capacity on a national level is 15,937.1 MW. Of this, 83% or 13,205 MW is said to be dependable capacity. Peak demand is only 8,999 MW, with 6,643 MW from Luzon, 1,102 MW from Visayas, and 1,241 from Mindanao for the year 2007. This leaves an excess generating capacity of 4,212 MW . This 4,212 MW is the dead weight loss to the Filipino consumers, mostly households, who must pay for the excess capacity even if the plants are idle, thanks to the ‘take or pay’ clause in the contracts the Ramos government signed with the independent power producers (IPPs).

Prof. Rowaldo Del Mundo of the National Engineering Center in the University of the Philippines also discovered in his study that Meralco, as a major distributor of electricity in Luzon, buys the bulk of its power supply during off peak hours from only three major power plants, namely Sta. Rita, San Lorenzo, and Quezon Power Plant Limited. Aside from these sources, there are a number of power plants from the total of 55 generation facilities operating in Luzon that could very easily meet base load requirements, or minimum demand for power given any time of day, beyond the Meralco franchise demands. Once again, we prove there is excess capacity to generate electricity that debunks the claims of a power shortage. Reviving BNPP at this time when the base load can only be seen to be shrinking, given the current global economic crisis, is grossly imprudent.

Even if the government would defend this projected increase in demand, we ask: Where is the industrialization plan that must necessarily be the basis of this anticipated growth in demand? And, should there be additional demand as projected by the government, what convinces us that this additional demand cannot be met by the combined dependable capacities of all generation plants, much less if all these plants were actually pushed closer to its installed capacity?

Finally, in the consideration of alleged increases in demand, it should be understood that the biggest driver for electricity demand increases is an industrializing base of the economy. The Philippine domestic economy is not on industrialization mode but is actually service sector driven. Moreover, in times of economic crises when companies are closing plants, shortening operating hours, or laying off workers, a corollary contraction in electricity demand is expected. And as the crisis is expected to last until 2011, at the most generous projections, the alleged need for increased generating capacity is thus eliminated.

The only possible justification specific to the operations of a nuclear power plant is to meet an increase in base load, or replace existing base load supply. An increase in base load is highly unlikely in times of economic crisis. However, it is a much worse option to replace existing base load supply as the current generators to meet such demands are the environmentally safe geothermal and hydroelectric power plants that are very much necessary in climate crisis mitigation-adaptation strategies.

On the point of power generation alone, we already establish that additional generation plants are not necessary, and certainly not in the monstrous form of a nuclear power plant.

Rehabilitating and Operating the BNPP Leads to More Wasteful and Useless Debt

We now need to look at the real cost of rehabilitating and operating the mothballed compound. Stated explicitly under Section 22 of the unnumbered substitute House Bill, the government may raise equity up to US$1 billion “through a surcharge of PhP 0.10/kWh of the total electric power generated” or “international or domestic loan agreements.” Is the government making the public choose, or is this a question of being caught between the devil and the deep blue sea? They make us pay more for the increased electricity surcharge, while debt service is prioritized over social services.

Nowhere in this world has the re-construction of nuclear power facilities been right on schedule and on budget. Here we express our support for the Greenpeace-conducted studies that expose the real price of reviving and maintaining a nuclear power plant. After being mothballed for over 20 years, the BNPP will more likely exceed the projected $1 billion to meet the technical and safety demands of a fully operational and nuclear meltdown – safe structure – and exclusive of the monumental costs of corruption and bribery that the BNPP itself represents, and the current administration has mastered.

Moreover, nuclear power plant operations will necessitate government financial support, particularly when we factor in purchasing and safely transporting the highly expensive and toxic uranium ore needed for the functioning of a nuclear power plant. As is the experience in Japan, without government subsidies, no self-respecting, profit-oriented enterprise will undertake the project mainly because of the exorbitant price for operations. We thus ask government: Can the Philippines afford to subsidize a project with this level of danger and expense? To subsidize the generation costs and mandate the payment of a PhP 0.10/kWh surcharge, or to bring the public deeper into debt and charge them exorbitant rates for the energy they will consume, the government will be pushing the people into a deeper level of economic and financial crisis.

We are still Paying for the Fraudulent BNPP Debt

How true is it to say that the BNPP has been fully paid for, and will therefore not incur expenditures in the current budget? In the books of the National Government, no doubt the debt has been paid and the creditors have fully collected, with interest. However, given our weak economy and the feeble fiscal position of the government, we are certain that new borrowings were incurred in order to at least pay for the principal amortizations on the BNPP debt. So perhaps, in a narrow accounting sense, the BNPP debt is paid, but we are no less indebted, and we continue to pay for this monster. We challenge the current administration to make transparent and available to the public the details of all transactions regarding the BNPP debt.

We also need to take into consideration the automatic debt servicing provision in Section 26 (b), Book VI of the 1987 Revised Administrative Code (Executive Order 292) that was the result of this colossal debt burden. That debt service trumps government prioritization of social welfare is shown by social services lack of growth in terms of share in national government expenditures especially when compared to the share of debt service interest . To illustrate this disparity in expenditures further, government spending in 2008 allocated P624.09 billion on debt service, combining principal amortization and interest payments. Education and Health expenditures put together amount to a meager P203.76 billion, falling short of one-third the allocation for debt service.

Furthermore, the Filipino people continue to pay for the BNPP debt in terms of struggling with the mammoth social deficit that an “Honor All Debts” prioritization has created: over-crowded public schools, deteriorating quality of education, insufficient health services, low-cost housing that the poor cannot afford, grossly incomplete agrarian reform and inadequate support for agrarian reform beneficiaries, a steady state of joblessness to which the government’s primary response it to send its citizens overseas – these are but a few of the manifestations of this misprioritization of debt service over addressing the needs of the poor. There is a real social cost of the past and the present misguided debt policies and practices and we know that it is not the cronies, the foreign investors, the creditors, or the elite who are paying for this.

Government Priority should be the People Confronted by an Economic Crisis

Appropriately, we must situate the Philippine economy in the crisis that it is currently undergoing. The latest projection from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) sees remittances growth declining to 6%-9% this year, following an average of 13.5% in 2008. In the latest flurry of firm closures, the Labor Department has declared fears of losing 60,000 jobs in the electronics sector alone. With this crisis not having an immediate end in sight, the priority of government should be on the enactment of industry support policies and social welfare programs that will provide a safety net for retrenched workers, their families, and the economy as a whole. At the very least, any proposal to restore the BNPP will be an insensitive and irresponsible move on the part of the legislative and executive branches of the Arroyo government that will clearly come at the cost of the people already feeling the full effects of the current crisis.

We thus urge our honorable legislators prioritize the true needs of the people and halt any attempt to rehabilitate, commission, and commercially operate the BNPP.


Thursday, March 5, 2009




Here are the simple acts your have started doing to save the planet from climate change:
You now SWITCH OFF all your appliances, lights, lamps, computers and other equipment when they are not in use.
You now UNPLUG your TV, mobile phone chargers, microwave ovens, DVD/VCD players, computers, and all your other appliances to avoid the energy-guzzling standby mode.
You now LIGHT UP EFFICIENTLY by using energy efficient lighting systems such as CFL bulbs and opening your curtains and windows to invite more sunlight to your rooms
You have SPREAD THE WORD and encouraged at least 5 of your friends to pledge for the planet and be energy-conscious like you
You are now ENERGY CONSCIOUS AT WORK/SCHOOL by practicing the simple acts of unplugging, switching off and you’ve probably encouraged your whole office and school to replace your incandescent bulbs to CFLs.
You are now ENERGY CONSCIOUS AT HOME by opening your windows to let natural air circulate in your house. You have also started using your refrigerator wisely.

So now, Greenpeace challenges you to move forward and continue this pledge for the planet. There are still numerous things that you can do for the planet…
…segregate trash – to minimize waste management processes
…bring your own baon or reusable containers when you buy food – you’ll lessen the production and waste of the food wrappers (especially if they’re made of non-biodegradable materials such as plastic or sytrofoam)
…travel efficiently – avoid the one-car, one-person practice
…continue spreading the word and expand to your own expertise and fields of interest!
A teacher? Perhaps you can lead your students in becoming more energy-conscious!
An architect? Maybe you can start designing houses that are more climate-friendly!

Over the years, Greenpeace has been working against climate change, fighting coal and other causes. Now it’s your turn.

Support Greenpeace in fighting this grave threat to our planet.

Simple lang, volunteer, support, take action!


Greenpeace on the House Bill to revive the BNPP

PHILIPPINES — Greenpeace Southeast Asia Campaigns Manager for the Philippines Beau Baconguis said:
"The ongoing debate on the House bill mandating the revival of the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant which continue to drag on in the House Committee on Appropriations just goes to show that Mark Cojuangco’s sordid nuclear proposal is clearly unsound and should not have been considered in the first place. Every single study conducted on the BNPP has concluded that this nuclear facility is unsafe to operate. There is no judicious reason why Congress should continue to hear this pointless proposal.

“Greenpeace has constantly asserted that: 1) Nuclear power is the most dangerous way to generate electricity, there is also no known scientific solution to safely storing plutonium, its deadly radioactive waste-product which remains radiotoxic for 240,000 years; 2) it is the most expensive source of power: aside from pricey construction costs, nuclear power involves expenses for decommissioning, as well as storage for nuclear waste, each of which can cost considerably more than new power plants; 3) Nuclear power cannot solve climate change—the contribution it can potentially make is negligible, and studies show that the entire nuclear power plant life cycle contributes significantly to climate change, and 4) it cannot give the country energy security, and will further render the Philippines dependent on the supply of uranium which is a limited resource found only in a few countries. No discussion in Congress can reverse any of the above arguments.

"Congress should therefore junk the BNPP revival and other nuclear power proposals, and focus on the full implementation of the RE Act which they passed last year. Congress should use their oversight function to ensure that the agencies tasked to develop the Implementing Rules and Regulations will complete their tasks within the deadline set by law and that the IRR will remain true to the
intent of the RE Act to spur massive investment on clean and safe renewable energy. Renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies—not nuclear power—are the genuine solutions to climate change and energy security.”

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