Archive | October, 2014

Give Earth A Chance

13 Oct

Addressing the effects of the climate change is easy preventing it is not. That is what I have learned in the past few months from the course Environmental Management. Although a lot of efforts have been put to alter the effects, the world is slowly being consumed by its temporary success and in this won battle there would be winners and losers. Though this “success” gives us high economy and stable monetary value, I know we would all be losers in the end if we do not do something about this. As what Pete Seeger and Phil Ochs sang in their great refrain, “all we are saying, is give Earth a chance” and this paper would give the earth a chance by writing what I think I can do as a student and a future HR practitioner.
While the United Nations has its own way to probe the causes of the global warming and has been (ineffectively) attempting to alter its effects (Kyoto Protocol), we the students may also give help in our own petty ways which if done so with a great number and consistency (which is what is lacking for most environmental movements) may impact the whole community. First, is the overly clichéd starting with one’s self. Overused as it may sound, the very essence of this is true to its bones. Like recycling paper, segregating e-wastes and dumping it in their designated dumpsites, promoting paper drive (which is currently happening with the collaboration of DBME organizations), using energy-efficient technologies, promoting the welfare of the environment. All of these I can say are very fundamental. Although this may be a good change for an individual, this will not be felt if done alone. Just like what we have read and discussed in one of our class sessions, if San Beda is doing community service and promoting the welfare of the environment but its surrounding establishments does not do so, it will all be useless. If one does not cooperate in the chain, then all of its efforts in the chain itself will be useless. So it is not just our only job as students to start with ourselves since this would be a senseless attempt to alter the global warming effects, instead the more important thing to do is to SHARE THE WORD. Share to the community especially to the ‘slum’ areas since they are the ones who are gravely affected by the effects. I guess it is a good idea to expose us to those communities next semester because we may practice what should be done, we may experience what it really is like to live in those areas and what are the key problems we should observe to be able to help them in those areas and go back again to have a solution. This may not change the world, but it will have an impact to the slum areas, which are the majority of the city dwellers. And who knows how much this may affect Luzon or maybe the Philippines.

“Six out of every 10 people in the world live in the Asia and Pacific region. Climate change will have a major impact on many of the people living there, particularly where there health is concerned. Many parts of Asia will harbor climate victims of its remarkable economic success.” (Globalization and Climate Change in Asia: the urban health impact) “The nineties brought the realization that even if the economics and ecological issues were addressed well, projects could fail as a result of the exclusion of the ‘people factor’ if not the social issues around development were not recognized.” (Sustainability and waste management article) These two quotes from the articles that we have read relays a message about the adverse effect of the economic success Asia has been experiencing in the past few years. Since I am only a student until next year, I wanted also to discuss how I could help as a future corporate worker. Due to the trend of eco-friendly strategies of the companies, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Reverse Logistics are 2 of the many techniques corporations are recently practicing. CSR in a nutshell is the practice where management does not only think about the stockholder but the stakeholders as well. Reverse Logistics studies cost-effectivity and eco-friendliness of a product it produces up until its maturity stage, on where to dump it, what are the materials that may be re-used and things like that. As a future HR Practitioner and a Leader (claiming) I would promote not only these two but I would also pioneer a movement regarding e-wastes. Here in our country, we are not fully aware of the effects of non-segregation of e-wastes but truth is children are suffering especially those in the Payatas, not only because of the typical wastes but because of the chemical content it has. It is one of my advocacy to start being aware of what is the content in each wastes that we have. In the article ‘Your iPhone’s Afterlife” the protagonist found out that there are ‘wastes’ that costs a lot when dissecting old technologies. Although optimistic as it may seem, we cannot erase the fact that there are still wastes after dissecting those things and the seemingly probable argument here is where to put those wastes. These are the problems manufacturing companies must be able to address sooner or later. Applying reverse logistics may be a big help to the corporate world but without letting your chain know, it is useless to practice this. That’s why it is very important to tell on to one’s supply chain these problems and to give incentives to those who will walk with those kinds of practices. This is what we should do in the corporate world.

Lastly, what we can all do regardless of our level in society, gender, monthly income, occupation is to gain more and more knowledge on what is happening in our environment. Being aware is a big step towards altering the negative effects of this so-called “Global Warming”. Knowing is one thing but sharing what you know is another and it is better. I guess it is safe to say that the exposure that we will encounter next semester to the communities will urge us to gain more knowledge and will help us address the key problems in the slum areas and what can we do about it. This new tradition will give the following communities further study of their problems and due to the consistency, it may be addressed with a long-term solutions especially when all of the courses in San Beda will be immersed. This may help the Bedan Community be aware of what is happening in the ‘slum’ areas and may share and inculcate the values that a true Bedan should have.
All of these may seem petty compared to the articles that we have read in the class, but all these are steps toward the “Kyoto Protocol” of my community, if not, only better because this is a slow step-by-step process but with accuracy and consistency. This may not be that big of an impact to the world, but changing one person’s perspective at a time is a big change for me. The environmental management class did not only teach me the technical terms in the environmental world, but it has made me aware of what is happening and what is to come. As what I have said, change starts with the knowledge. And now, I am willing to make a change because of the knowledge I have received and I am willing to pay it forward and teach others to do the same.