Category Archives: Advocacy

Bioengineering

I’m glad to have stumbled upon this photo posted by DPWH Secretary Mark Villar in his Facebook page in July. The photo showed segment of Tarlac Pangasinan La Union Expressway (TPLEX). According to Sec. Villar, coco net and vertiber grass are being utilized in the 11-km segment of TPLEX to prevent soil erosion. The photo also carries hashtags #BuildBuildBuild and #Bioengineering.

DPWH Sec. Mark Villar photo

According to Wikipedia, bioengineering means the application of principles of biology and the tools of engineering to create usable, tangible, economically-viable products.

Sun-dried coconut halves

In 2012, I (with other bloggers) was able to observe how coco net are made — from drying coconut halves to decorticating the husks, twining the fibers, and finally weaving the net – during a tour at the green social enterprises in Las Piñas organized by the Villar Foundation. 

Decorticating machine separates coco fibers from coconut husk

Twining and weaving nets from coconut husks is just one of the social enterprises of the foundation. The other livelihood projects include handloom weaving, house waste composting, vermin composting, producing hollow blocks from trash, and crafting baskets from water hyacinths.

Worker separates fiber for twining

The development of these livelihood projects was an offshoot of an endeavor to clean and revive the Las Pinas-Zapote River.

The husks not thrown on the river were left on the sidewalks and the city had to spend more to haul the garbage. Trash collectors failed to collect sacks of coconut husk so they end up polluting the river.

Twining the coconut fibers to create ropes

To address the growing problem with coconut husks that were left on the sidewalks, Mrs. (now Senator) Cynthia Villar , managing director of the Villar Foundation, initiated and met with experts from Bicol University for the Coco Coir technology.

Twines are weaved in the loom to create nets

Dr. Justino Arboleda, an agricultural engineer, designed the machinery to make the coco-net. Coco Coir Enterprise utilizes coconut husk and convert them into coco net.

Finished coco nets are used for slope protection and control soil erosion. Coco nets are being used by Las Piñas City and private developers.

Congratulations, Sec. Villar for supporting #bioengineering techniques to complete government projects under the #BuildBuildBuild program. This sure saves a lot of government fundings.

Why You Should Respect the Space of Wild Animals

Wild animals are inherent elements within nature. Truth be told, humans are as much animals as elephants, apes, and zebras, but more civilized and intelligent in some ways. With that said, all animals should be respected. But some humans get caught up in being at the top of the food chain, making them cocky and uncaring of wild animal matters. Unfortunately, this kind of disconnected, backwards thinking leads to species extinctions and habitat losses. So, to save the world with all of the animals in it, here are several reasons why you should respect the space of wild animals.

Image courtesy of assoonas at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

They Were There First

Most animal lineages go back for eons, with evolution leading the way in their development. The same can be said of humans, of course, but the wild animals that remained wild animals were here long before modern humans. So, if you want to base your respect on superiority of a position or premises, animals were there first. You should respect them because this was their home before it was yours. It’s highly unlikely that a wild pack of lemurs would ever wander into your home and set up shop. So, why should you do that to them by building a home in their natural habitat?

Image courtesy of panuruangjan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Wild Animals are Stronger, Faster, and More Instinctive

While humans have evolved in what is considered civilization, thousands of species of wild animals have become stronger, faster, and more instinctive. They follow their natures, letting their true selves lead the way in their decisions and thought processes. Wild animals should be respected because they are nature incarnate. They embody everything that humans aren’t, in all of their civilized wisdom.

Image courtesy of Phil_Bird at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

You Could Be Destroying an Entire Ecosystem

When you disrespect animals with littering or slaughtering them or their habitats, you could be destroying an entire ecosystem. It’s the equivalent of pouring molten lead into an ant hill just to see the cool effects. You are, in reality, destroying a smooth-run, well-oiled ecosystem in the name of your own entertainment and fun. It’s wrong. Live and let live. It’s gotten to the point where animal protection officials and preserves have to take out animal life insurance to ensure the continuation of a species after an endangered animal dies.

Image courtesy of assoonas at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Despite views to the contrary, humans are not the kings of the world. They are merely inhabitants—the same as any other animal. Respect of wild animals should be a given. And an appreciation for nature should be a passed down trait. Teach your kids that wild animals deserve to live and thrive as much as you do, because compassion will go a long way towards a good life.

Family Emergency Preparedness Food Checklist

Have you had this panic attack every time you read or heard about the earthquake which experts said could strike and isolate Metro Manila? I do. While the family discussed about this in passing, we don’t have a solid plan yet on what to prepare or do when earthquake happens. I told the kids that wherever they may be when earthquake hits the area they should try not to panic and protect themselves (and please try to reach home safe).

family emergency preparedness food checklist

Department of Health Photo: There is a high risk of malnutrition during emergencies like typhoons. What should be in your emergency food stock list to prevent this from happening to you and your family? (Please click on image to enlarge.)

Useful information about emergency preparedness suggests that a family secure a food checklist. The 72-hour emergency kit includes non-perishable goods, medicine, among others, but the food checklist includes a variety of non-perishable and nutritious goods enough to sustain a family for a few days.

Please check on the picture above to find out the necessary goods to stock at home in preparation for emergency situation.

Repost from my other blog: