Local Actions with Ripple Effects: Making Waves through Coastal Cleanup Efforts

TVI team members cap off another successful coastal clean-up drive at the TVI facility in Toledo City, Cebu with a stronger belief in the importance of coming together to tackle environmental issues in the community.
TVI team members cap off another successful coastal clean-up drive at the TVI facility in Toledo City, Cebu with a stronger belief in the importance of coming together to tackle environmental issues in the community.

Amid coastal communities in the country, an encouraging chapter in environmental stewardship is unfolding, showing how the public and private sectors can work hand in hand to become a line of defense towards the realization of cleaner coastlines and healthier marine ecosystems.

As an archipelago, the Philippines is renowned for its stunning beaches framed by clear turquoise waters, making it one of the world's most captivating coastal destinations. But despite this natural beauty, the Philippines is considered the largest contributor of plastic waste per capita in the ocean.

In 2023, an international study found the Philippines averaging 3.3 kilograms of plastic waste per person per year. Taken together, this is equivalent to more than 350,000 tonnes of plastic waste entering the ocean from the Philippines, making up 36% of the world’s total.

With an advocacy of protecting the coastal environments around its power plants, Aboitiz Power Corporation (AboitizPower) subsidiaries Therma South, Inc. (TSI) in Davao del Sur and Therma Visayas, Inc. (TVI) in Toledo City, Cebu are actively working together with the local community through annual coastal clean-up drives. This year’s push coincided with World Water Day, commemorated every March 22.

Scubasureros from TVI, government agencies, volunteer organizations, and the local community come together every year to collect submerged waste at the Bato Marine Sanctuary in Toledo City, Cebu. Plastics harm human health and threaten vital wildlife like seabirds and turtle species who mistake it for food.
Scubasureros from TVI, government agencies, volunteer organizations, and the local community come together every year to collect submerged waste at the Bato Marine Sanctuary in Toledo City, Cebu. Plastics harm human health and threaten vital wildlife like seabirds and turtle species who mistake it for food.
Scubasureros from TVI, government agencies, volunteer organizations, and the local community come together every year to collect submerged waste at the Bato Marine Sanctuary in Toledo City, Cebu. Plastics harm human health and threaten vital wildlife like seabirds and turtle species who mistake it for food.
Scubasureros from TVI, government agencies, volunteer organizations, and the local community come together every year to collect submerged waste at the Bato Marine Sanctuary in Toledo City, Cebu. Plastics harm human health and threaten vital wildlife like seabirds and turtle species who mistake it for food.

Named fittingly, "scubasurero" is a portmanteau of ”scuba diving” and ”basurero” — the Filipino term for garbage collector — thus capturing the essence of this underwater cleanup effort.

The scubasureros collected 87 kilos of submerged waste, significantly less than the 240 kilos they got last year, reflecting improvements in waste disposal initiatives and the result of previous coastal clean-ups. On the same day, the volunteers also planted 200 trees along the coastlines, contributing to the restoration and preservation of vital habitats for wildlife.

"The collective actions of our volunteers underscore the transformative power of united efforts in tackling environmental issues. This collaborative approach emphasizes the vital role of community engagement in forging sustainable solutions for the well-being of our planet,” TVI’s Cabahug shared.

By engaging with their local communities, power plants like TSI and TVI are fostering partnerships that transcend traditional boundaries. Through coastal cleanup activities and information, education, and communication initiatives, they are empowering individuals with the knowledge and the opportunities to become better stewards of our waterways.

Scubasureros from AboitizPower subsidiaries Therma Visayas, Inc. and Therma South, Inc., government agencies, volunteer organizations, and the local community come together every year to collect submerged waste at the Bato Marine Sanctuary in Toledo City, Cebu. Plastics harm human health and threaten vital wildlife like seabirds and turtle species that mistake them for food.
Scubasureros from AboitizPower subsidiaries Therma Visayas, Inc. and Therma South, Inc., government agencies, volunteer organizations, and the local community come together every year to collect submerged waste at the Bato Marine Sanctuary in Toledo City, Cebu. Plastics harm human health and threaten vital wildlife like seabirds and turtle species that mistake them for food.

The collective efforts of these volunteers demonstrate how local initiatives can significantly align with advancing global conservation efforts to create a cleaner, brighter, and better future for all. (SPONSORED CONTENT)

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