February 24, 2024

Technological, technical and practical solutions to environmental problems were presented last week by University of Baguio student leaders while on a leadership training.

A workshop was done after lectures on eco-consciousness and technology, environmental programs of Baguio, climate change concerns, and solid waste management.

Anchored on the lectures, a group of students suggested a minimalist lifestyle.

A self-segregating waste machine, a fog harp and rainwater harvesting for reservoirs, a drone vitalizer for planting, and a waste impact calculator for household garbage should be set up, the students suggested.

A survey on the city’s carrying capacity, electronic waste monitoring from house to the Bakakeng e-waste facility were also suggested.

The students also mulled the production and use of edible straws, utensils and cutleries.

For technological and technical ventures, a reverse dispensing/exchange machine with a box for recyclables and coins in exchange; and a solar powered drone that detects heat from burning garbage with a camera recorder for documentation, were presented.

Solar panels should be used to decrease electricity use, construction materials should be reused and recycled, and building materials should be energy efficient. Rainwater harvesting should be done with the water to be used for construction, gardening and flushing, the students said.

For water resources, a river barrier/strainer which pushes plastic to one side, but allows fish and wildlife to pass; and sewage as irrigation sources was suggested for research. Declogging facilities may also be installed for wastewater, the students said.

As an offshoot of the extended responsibility for plastic manufacturers, students are batting for a plastic bottle exchange center, or for PET products to be used in a Christmas parol competition. Establishments that do not use plastics should be rewarded, the students also said. Scientists at the Department of Science and Technology are urged to embark on research to dilute or degrade plastic, the students added.

There should be restrictions on the use of plastic bottled water, the students requested.

Planting trees could be rewarded by giving prizes to a winner drawn every month.

A group suggested an eco-pulot walk from Lucnab, with gardening in available spaces; and seed scattering also to be done along the way, the students said.

Inside the house, kitchen wastes should be directly composted for a garden, while wastes converted to methane may be used for cooking. Said projects may be done in coordination with the Department of Science and Technology and Department of Environment and Natural Resources, the students said.

A community approach is needed, the students decided, engagement as to environmental issues with local folks shall be documented and presented in a proper forum.

The University of Baguio is the fourth school which hosted lectures on eco-consciousness, as part of the third Saleng Festival, a four-month celebration focused on environmental revival, sustainability and resiliency.

Results of the workshop will be forwarded to the city council for possible legislations and presented to the Baguio Climate Change Council for future projects and funding. – Julie G. Fianza