Earth Day 2010: Let us take action

On April 22, millions of people in different nations will take action and unite to show love to our only Earth. April 22 is Earth Day!

Earth Day 2010 is significant because it is the 40th Earth Day celebration. Earth Day started on April 22, 1970 in the United States.

Here’s the words from Earth Day Network:

Forty years after the first Earth Day, the world is in greater peril than ever. While climate change is the greatest challenge of our time, it also presents the greatest opportunity – an unprecedented opportunity to build a healthy, prosperous, clean energy economy now and for the future.

How’s our Earth? The question, to be more specific should be: how’s your environment?

Even a grade 5 student can tell you about how the face of earth is destroyed. A second year high school can explain to you how environmental abuse relate to climate change.

We may be aware. It’s on how we work on our awareness.

For example, garbage segregation seems simple as it sounds but actually difficult to implement. I can cite what happen here in Mandaue City. When the city’s dumping site was closed, the government initiated garbage-segregation. But the program did not really sustained.

It’s election and election here in the Philippines is literally dirty with all the garbage (mostly plastic-made campaign materials. Imagine how our cities look after election.

Here is the buzzword called climate change. Though the Philippines is not a major contributor to global warming but recent events shown that our country is highly vulnerable to natural disasters and abrupt change to climate.

Now, the country is experiencing a very dry season. In an episode of iWitness, the impact of dry season was felt. It showed how people in Masbate are surviving with very little water.

Here is a teaser of the TV program:

Water mixed with mud. Water that tastes like mud. This is what residents in Sampad, Masbate must deal with on a day to day basis. With no permanent source of clean water, they dig wells with their bare hands hoping to tap into some water from the earth. But with widespread drought, the dug wells bring little relief.

I wrote, Minimizing the impact El Niño phenomenon, to remind everyone that while we cannot stop the dry spell, we can actually do something to minimize its effects.

We already felt the effect of climate change; we are getting back what we give to Earth. But of course, it is not yet too late. We can still act. Let us take action.

I believe the best Earth image is the Blue Marble. The Blue Marble is a famous photograph of the Earth taken on December 7, 1972, by the crew of the Apollo 17 spacecraft at a distance of about 45,000 kilometres (28,000 mi). (Source: Wikipedia; Image below also from Wikipedia)

I suggest that you will take a look and appreciate the beauty of our Earth in 30 seconds. Look at the Blue Marble below then answer my question.

What can you do to help save our only Earth?

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I support Earth Hour 2010

I’ll take action on March 27, 2010! I support Earth Hour 2010. At 8:30 PM, I’ll turn off my computer and stop navigating the net for an hour or more. I’ll turn off the lights and go out and talk with friends.

Earth Hour 2010

Whether you are an individual, a business, a school or a city, you can show your support for Earth Hour by turning off your lights at 8:30 PM on March 27 wherever you are on the planet.

Here is the official video of Earth Hour 2010.

The website, earthhour.org suggests ways how you can show your support to Earth Hour 2010.

About Earth Hour

On March 28, 2009, Earth Hour became the biggest mass action on Earth! There were 88 countries and 4,088 cities participated in Earth Hour 2009. That was ten times more cities than Earth Hour 2008 had!

I am not the only one who loves Earth. You can attest that because you too, love our Earth! Aren’t you? Cebu Bloggers Society supports Earth Hour 2010. I hope other groups will support as well.

RP to Myanmar: Release Aung San Suu Kyi immediately and unconditionally

At least the Philippines speaks its position on Myanmar‘s new charges filed against opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi just days before the expiration of her six-year detention.

The statement of Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto G. Romulo on the detention of Aung San Suu Kyi at Insein Prison says, the Philippine Government is deeply troubled and outraged over the filing of trumped up charges against Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and her transfer to Insein prison, particularly when concerns have been raised regarding her health condition.

The Philippine government urge the government of Myanmar to resolve the matter speedily, and to release Aung San Suu Kyi immediately and unconditionally.

The new charges against Aung San Suu Kyi seems an indicator that Myanmar is not serious to carry out its own Roadmap for Democracy which has long been overdue.

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Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ): More online journalists are jailed

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) reports that 45% off all media workers jailed worldwide are bloggers, Web-based reporters, or online editors. This is the first time that online journalists represent the largest professional category in CPJ’s prison census.

According to CPJ’s data, at least 56 online journalists are jailed worldwide. For the first time this surpasses the number of print journalists imprisonment tally. In it’s report, CPJ noted: The number of imprisoned online journalists has steadily increased since CPJ recorded the first jailed Internet writer in its 1997 census.

CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon was quoted saying:

Online journalism has changed the media landscape and the way we communicate with each other,but the power and influence of this new generation of online journalists has captured the attention of repressive governments around the world, and they have accelerated their counterattack.

There is more interesting points in CPJ report. According to CPJ’s data, 45 of 56 journalists on CPJ’s census are freelancers; most of them work online. These freelancers are not employees of media companies and often do not have the legal resources or political connections that might help them gain their freedom. The number of imprisoned freelancers has risen more than 40% in the last two years.

The future of journalism is online. Blogging including online social networks have become influencial as illustrated in the recent US presidential campaigns and elections.

In the Philippines, new media (online journalism) has also emerged to become a forceful influence in forming public opinions.

As the 2010 presidential elections come closer, it is expected that political blogging become more and more aggressive.

One political blog that catch the attention of many online readers is the Mar Roxas for President in 2010 blog by a college sophomore, Kevin Ray Chua. His blog was the first blog about 2010 polls.

In Cebu, bloggers formed the Cebu Blogger’s Society which partly aimed to help each blogger-member. But the group has still much to work on to ready itself on the scenario when freedom of free flow of information is curtailed – and on worst scenario when a blogger is sent to jail.

Barack Obama: The Next US President?

The indicators of winning the United States presidential election of 2008 is most favorable to Barack Hussein Obama II. Will Obama be the next US President?

We can predict but only the citizens of the United Sates of America can tell who. If elected, Barack Obama will be the first African American president of the US.

Obama is a junior US Senator from Illinois. He is the presidential nominee of Democratic Party in the 2008 presidential election.

Barack Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. Thus, if destiny favor Obama, he will be the first president who was born outside the continental United States.

Barack Obama’s notable political position is his early opposition to the policies of President George W. Bush on Iraq. When President Bush and Congress authorized the Iraq war in October 2002, Obama spoke out against the war.

Another notable political stand of Obama is on nuclear policies of the US. If elected, he said that he would enact budget cuts in the range of tens of billions of dollars, stop investing in “unproven” missile defense systems, not “weaponize” space, “slow development of Future Combat Systems,” and work towards eliminating all nuclear weapons.

The world will be watching the US on November 4, 2008 – the date of 2008 presidential election. Will it be Obama?

Let’s wait and see.

But whoever gets elected, he will surely play a pivotal role in world affairs.