Our commitment to safeguard our seas today for the benefit of everyone must be clear, said Sen. Cynthia A. Villar.
During the International Coastal Clean-up Day or ICC celebrated at the Las Pinas-Paranaque Wetland Park, the chairperson of the Senate committees on Environment and Natural Resources, said we must strongly adhere to protecting our environment and our seas because we and our fisherfolks all depend on the bounties of the seas.
“This year’s ICC theme, ‘Clean Seas For Healthy Fisheries,’ emphasizes the crucial connection between ocean health and the abundance of our fisheries. Clean waters are essential for the well-being of marine life and a vibrant fishing sector.
Held annually on the third Saturday of September, the ICC represents the world’s largest volunteer effort for ocean health.
Volunteers from around the globe gather on beaches, coasts, rivers, other waterways, and dive sites to remove trash and document the volume and type of trash collected.
While our fishermen strive to provide us with the ocean’s bounty, Villar lamented that they are often the ones most impacted by the worsening state of the seas, fish habitats, and climate events such as El Niño and frequent storms.
“Sadly , our seas face threats from habitat degradation and pollutants like plastics, which not only reduce the fish population but also affects the livelihood of our fisherfolks,” also said the chairperson of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food.
“We are fortunate to have our ICC here in Las Piñas – Parañaque Wetland Park, a place where we can immerse ourselves in nature while participating in the clean-up,” she added.
She noted that our wetland park is protected under RA No. 11038 or the Expanded NIPAS Act of 2018, which she pushed in the Senate.
Aside from this, LPPWP was recognized as the sixth Wetland of International Importance under the International Convention for the Conservation of Wetlands o Ramsar Convention.
As member of the Ramsar Convention, it is the duty of our government to protect Ramsar sites, including LPPWP for long term protection of our natural resouces.
Beyond its ecological ing significance, the LPPWP offers crucial benefits to the local residents of Las Piñas, Parañaque, and Bacoor. It safeguards against flooding, high tides, and storm surges. In tune with our ICC theme, it also serves as a vital livelihood source for numerous fisherfolk and the urban poor who rely on it daily.