HK repatriates 18 rare turtles from Palawan.
IT TOOK them a while to return to the Philippines, but the 18 rare turtles taken by a Chinese student from the wilds of Palawan several months ago are back and under protective custody, a wildlife conservation group said Friday.
Environment officials fetched the turtles from Hong Kong following the repatriation proceedings there, said Juan Miguel Zubiri, President of the Katala Foundation.
“They’re back, but I’m dismayed that our authorities were not able to prevent these animals from leaving the country,” Zubiri told reporters.
The 18 forest turtles, which are found only in Palawan, are considered to be nearly extinct. The Chinese consider them novelty pets or exotic food.
The turtles were among the various animals taken from the Philippines and intercepted in Hong Kong’s airport on Feb. 8. The illegal shipment included 24 lizards, 16 pythons, a flying snake, two mangrove snakes and a common mock viper.
Zubiri, a former senator, said he will seek an investigation into how the turtles were able to leave the country.
“Our airports and seaports are the last line of defense in our fight against illegal wildlife trade. I call on the authorities to investigate,” he said.
Officials said the turtles will be nurtured and then released to the wilds in Palawan.
(Published in the Manila Standard Today newspaper on /2012/April/28)
Manila Bay plan splits Aguilars of Las Piñas.
Someone once told me that I should now start selling our property because people now still do not have an idea that climate change will soon impact our community and what was once land will soon be water reclaimed by sea. It was quite depressing because I believe what he said was true, if the value of the Boulevard 2000 project is 100,000.00 per square meter, that will be devalued once the sea level starts to rise. It would be very easy to sell now because most people could not foresee the impacts of Climate Change in the city. For most, value today is better than value for the future…but as taught by Prof. Cielito Habito, true and sincere development is sustainable development.
Most of the local people I know in my community have no idea what Climate Change is and my family have repeatedly insulted my intelligence because they do not understand what my work is all about. They do not speak to me yet they make assumptions about who I am. I barely could speak to someone with a global perspective. All they can think about is power and how to stay in power. Lack of awareness is contagious, any dumbass can rise to power and force upon their misconceptions to everyone and I know most local governments face the same scenario where nothing happens because rather than strive for continual improvement, maintaining the status quo is far more important.We do not need piece meal ordinances that do not serve the good of the majority, what a city needs is a Strategic Environmental Plan, identifying significant environmental impacts through a strategic environmental assessment.
I truly appreciate Hong Kong, however Gina Lopez brainwashes us that we could never be like Hong Kong or Singapore. First, Hong Kong implements an ecosystem compensation scheme where as a condition for proponents, environmental restoration efforts shall be implemented equal to the environmental costs of any development. The advantage of Hong Kong is that it has a mature environmental impact assessment system that considers the full economic costs and benefits of a development proposal. They have to do this because they have limited resources.
The article I shared from the PDI is full of misconceptions, that has been the style of Philippine Media. Less substance and more showbiz with bits and pieces of insignificance. Education is slowly degrading…critical thinking is considered an ingratitude, forcing upon us dumbness to the maximum level.
I would like to share the announcement of the World Resources Institute. Local government who are partners of ICLEI are now starting to develop and implement GHG inventories. I do not know anyone from my community would appreciates it or would make a comment. It is like I am living an oxymoron, I am trying my best to become a GHG verifier yet I live in a City that would truly fail in such international standard because policy-makers are not aware of the basics of sustainable development, something as basic as thinking about the future of our children.