Asin Sagip Ilog Network

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By Alah Sungduan

Stand Up for Life

Thursday, March 6, 2014


THE hope of having one strong voice for the protection of Asin River may now be realized. This is after residents of Barangay Nangalisan, Tuba, Benguet expressed their common response to be organized for the same goal- to save the river from further pollution.

In the Save Asin River Forum dubbed "Maintaining Environmental Integrity Through Community Awareness" organized by the College of Arts and Sciences of the University of the Cordilleras in partnership with the Tadiangan Nangalisan Hydro Ancestral Land Association (TNHALA) headed by its President Roger Sinot, the residents said they do not like their river to be the next Balili River which is considered as biologically dead river and now being restored.

Nangalisan Barangay Captain Pedro Guzman said their problem is how to prevent the garbage coming from tributaries of Asin River such as the Asin Gallano River, Bucan River, City Camp Lagoon that run to Crystal Cave going to Asin Road, Irisan River flowing at the Irisan Bridge, and water coming from Tuba Poblacion area, Lumecneng, and Lasilas.

UC CAS faculty Professor Teresita Doctor from the Natural Sciences Department said such concern on river pollution problem can be addressed through the concerted efforts among the residents, barangay officials, teachers, and students who need to be organized.

Sinot, one of the prime movers of Save the Asin River campaign said the support of the entire community, volunteers, environmentalists, concerned government agencies, teachers, and students is needed in realizing this venture which is also seen as one way of preserving the culture of the community.

The participants were also enlightened on the role they need to play to save the river and uphold the essentials of the river protection goals through the whole day environment and journalism seminar conducted on February 27 at Pooten Hot Spring Resort.

Speaker Engr. Aurora Felisa “Mona” Reyes talked on the topic “Carbon Fasting for Interconnectedness: How trashing the river has contributed to trashing the climate” while UC CAS faculty Assistant Professor Jay Jay Manuel gave a lecture on “Water Source Management” and March fianza on “Indigenous sustainable environment”.

The participants were also taught how to write news stories through UC CAS faculty Assistant Professor Katrina Mamaril who talked on the “Basics of Newswriting” and Northern Philippine Times Publisher-Editor Alfred Dizon who gave a lecture and workshop on “Writing Environmental News.”

The forum ended with some positive comments from the participants. “Thank you for coming to discuss the Save Asin River forum,” Mario Mapatac said.

Another resident Jaime Tamsi also expressed her gratitude to the organizers. “Thank you and help us save Asin River,” he said. On the other hand Gladys Tamsi requested for a continued support for the campaign “Thank you and continue your good service in our environment,” she said.

SM City Baguio through PR Manager Karren Nobres-Padilla and the officialdom of Barangay Nangalisan served as the major partners in the implementation of the Save Asin River Forum which was also supported by Baguio Congressman Nicasio Aliping Jr. who provided the vehicle for the speakers and volunteers, Attorney Richard Stone Pooten for the venue, and the Rotary Club of Metro Baguio, and Milagros Velasco who sponsored the snacks for all the participants.

The voice of the residents of Nangalisan will be heard if they will work together as one. If they will be organized it will also be good if they consider having a name for their group like Asin Sagip Ilog Network (ASIN) to have an identity and to show that they are united and truly dedicated in the campaign for the protection of Asin River.

For comments and topic suggestions please email alahsungduan@gmail.com

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on March 07, 2014.

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