Environmental groups EcoWaste Coalition and Buklod Tao on Wednesday called on Black Nazarene devotees to make this year's "Traslacion" the cleanest and safest ever.
The groups campaigned in front of the Quiapo Church Monday morning, urging devotees to do a "trash-less" devotion instead of doing the opposite -- "trash-lacion".
The groups even conducted a parade along the areas of Quiapo as they placed a replica of the Black Nazarene in a "kariton" (pushcart), which is used by informal waste recyclers to collect recyclables from neighborhoods.
They urged devotees to use recyclable and reusable materials for the food that they will pack for the procession, instead of styro or disposable plastic containers and bottles that can pollute the environment.
According to EcoWaste Coalition national coordinator Aileen Lucero, some 30 trucks of trash were collected last year and 20 trucks the year before at the Quirino Grandstand and Luneta Park in Manila, as well as in the streets where the procession passed. Most of them were food and drink packages drinks.
She suggested that those who provide the devotees food and drinks could use reusable plates, spoons and forks so as not to contribute to the trash. If possible, devotees should also bring bags where they could stash their garbage, she added.
The groups also enjoined vendors to do their share in reducing the litter along the processional trail by minding their rubbish.
Reminding that this month is National Zero Waste Month, EcoWaste campaigner Ochie Tolentino said, "A cleaner Traslacion will also be in step with the theme for this year's celebration ("Pag-ibig ang Buklod ng Ganap na Pagkakaisa") as caring for the environment is integral to forming loving relationships and communities."
"We urge Quiapo local leaders not to allow their communities to drown in garbage and to make Jan. 9 a special occasion to enforce the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act," Tolentino added.
Source: Philippines News Agency