The first time I visited Lucban, Quezon, I encountered people buy fresh fish wrapped in old newspapers. I thought: Masyado sigurong pobre an munisipyong ini ta maski plastic warang nagpapabakal.
But conventional wisdom is wrong. First impression is generally a product of hasty generalization and worse, ignorance. Mas mayaman pa an Lucban kumpara sa gold-producing municipalities like Rapu-Rapu in Albay and Paracale in Camarines Norte. As of 2008, the total municipal income of Lucban, Quezon is P 76.4 million while Rapu-rapu and Paracale only have P 63.4 million and P 62.5 million, respectively. And to note, the lack of plastic wrappers in Lucban is not a result of adversity but of sheer intelligence. They wanted to protect their environment, the source of their wealth. Simpleng lohika, mas mayaman pa an Lucban bako lang dahil may pinoprotehiran ining kayamanan kundi pati na man sa isip.
Just recently, Albay has also joined Lucban in the list of local government units battling a war against plastics. See Bicol Mail’s report below.
Albay’s plastic ban starts this June
By Rey M. Nasol
LEGAZPI CITY — The province of Albay will start enforcing its ‘plastic’ ban with a massive information and education campaign starting this month of June that will lead to full enforcement of ordinance against the use of plastic bags by March 2012.
According to Albay Gov. Joey Salceda, “Plastic ban in Albay will take effect on March 2012 and Board Member Arnold Embestro, who is the chairman of the Committee on Environment, will lead a massive IEC campaign starting June 2011.”
Learning from China, Albay has waged its war against “white pollution,” which basically refers to the indiscriminate use of plastic bags.
“Under this campaign in China, bookstores and pharmacies are forbidden from giving out free plastic bags, supermarkets have been charging customers for shopping bags since June 1, 2008 when China also banned the production, sale and use of ultra-thin plastic bags, becoming one of only a few countries around the world to take such tough measures,” Salceda said.