Thursday, April 2, 2009

Green Initiatives

For the very first time, the Philippines hosted the Eco-Products International Fair on March 19-22 at the SMX Convention Center. In the past years, the fair was held in Hanoi, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. The fair featured everything related to the environment---from the latest environmental technologies to manufactured goods, equipment, systems and services. Organized by Asian Productivity Organization, Development Academy of the Philippines and Philippine Business for the Environment, and supported by the Japan Foundation Manila, various embassies, government and private institutions.

One of the most interesting booths at the fair was the DTi-Bayong Development Project. This project focuses on the good ol' bayong, a traditional market bag made of natural leaves such as pandan, buri, sabutan, abaca and romblon which are abundant in the countryside. It re-introduces bayong for a win-win benefit of creating livelihood opportunities and contributing to preserving the environment. Instead of non-biodegradable packaging, why not use bayong? According to DTI, there are indications that bayong could spark a whole new export industry. could even be reinvented to become a fashion statement of green-minded shopaholics! Picture this: Paris Hilton shopping at Rodeo Drive with her signature bayong! Pwede!

bayong weaving demo

organic rice at Go Organic!

I also lingered at the Go Organic! booth. They're promoting organic farming as a way of life to improve the income of Filipino farmers, secure the availability of affordable food for Filipinos, better health for consumers, restore and prevent the deterioration of the environment. I tried switching to organic brown rice about 2 years ago but it felt like eating horse food (you'd probably wonder how I know what darak tastes like...I was a horse in my past life, that's why! :-P). Anyway, I possibly bought an inferior brand or an old stock, but I'm willing to try again.

And there's this cute electric car from EVnnovations. This is the first commercially-available electric car in the Philippines to be introduced by Ramcar Group. I hope this would answer the growing concerns over high oil prices and global warming. It's high time that we seriously look into alternative solutions that are economically and ecologically friendly. I'm excited to see e-cars on the road, and e-jeepneys as well---air of better quality is finally possible in the near future!

REVAi, an electric car
electric jeepney

And speaking of e-jeepneys---I spotted this electric jeepney at the National Trade Show in early March, also held at the SMX. The iconic Pinoy jeepney has also turned electric. It was launched in 2007, I think, but so far, I haven't seen it on the streets. I remember e-jeepneys were road tested in Makati 2 years ago, and I wonder if they're still rolling on the streets of the business district.

stone cast

Stonecast products from Cebu...patented and sold in the world market. These are handmade from natural crushed stone, dry-stamped into a mold simulating how the earth makes limestone. The material looks and feels like cut limestone, and it can be used for indoor and outdoor.

A model "Green Home" was also showcased, an eco-labeling program, eco-tourism, car-makers (with a car prototype that runs on vegetable oil!), electronics manufacturers, a photo exhibit, solar panels, eco-friendly furniture, recycling market, herbal generics, organic foods and lots of Japanese companies. I enjoyed my time at the fair...especially tasting different blends of organic coffee and catching some parts of featured films. They were showing "Brutus: Ang Paglalakbay"---about the environmental degradation of Mindoro from the eyes of two Mangyan teenagers; "Donsol", a town in Sorsogon and the home of the butanding (whaleshark); "Abong/Small Home" and "Kadin (The Goat)". There was also a Joey Ayala concert (but I didn't come back for that). President Arroyo graced the fair and I tried to take her photo--- but as expected, she was surrounded by aides, executives and diplomats and all I got was a photo of the back of her head between two giant aides.:-P


2sweetnsaxy said...

I love attending things like this. There are always so many things to look at just like what you've shown. Thanks for sharing these shots.

Oman said...

dapat talaga ibalik na ang bayong no? less plastic means less pollution.

Caprice- said...

Very interesting. Thanks for taking us along. I love the Jeppney- it's cute.

escape said...

sayang ang ibang kulturang pinoy. dami na ring nawawala at nalilimutan. masyado ng commercialized lahat.