MANILA In an effort to save the environment, President Rodrigo R. Duterte has broached the idea of prohibiting the use of plastics in the country, MalacaAang said on Thursday.
The President raised the proposal during his productive discussions with Cabinet members at MalacaAan Palace on Wednesday night.
The President floated the idea to ban the use of plastics, which according to him would require legislative action, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.
Panelo noted that it was Vernice Victorio, president and chief executive officer of the Natural Resources Development Corporation (NRDC), who touched on the plastic pollution when she presented to the President and the Cabinet the Priority Programs for Environment and Climate Change Resiliency.
NRDC is a state corporation attached to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
The Philippines uses a shocking amount of single-use plastic, including nearly 60 billion sachets a year, according to a March 2019 article published by Agence France-Presse, quoting the report by non-government organization Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives.
The report found that almost 48 million shopping bags are used throughout the Philippines daily, adding up to more than 17 billion a year.
It noted that the figure excludes around 16.5 billion smaller, thinner, and transparent plastic bags used every year across the country.
During the 35the Association of Southeast Asian Nations plenary summit in Thailand, the President called on his fellow Southeast Asian leaders not to sacrifice the environment and the region's rich biodiversity.
He said the regional bloc should intensify its cooperation to address climate change.
"We must work together to address the problem of marine debris. And we must build resilient and stronger communities to adapt to the effects of climate change," Duterte said.
The Congress has fielded several proposed measures banning the use of single-use plastic products in the country. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency