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Search for eco-friendly schools launched

Rhodina Villanueva (The Philippine Star) - September 30, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has forged a partnership with One Meralco Foundation for the 2013 National Search for Sustainable and Eco-friendly Schools.

Environmental Management Bureau director Juan Miguel Cuna said the foundation shall provide about P900,000 worth of cash prizes and plaques for schools in the elementary, high school and college levels that will be recognized for their exceptional programs on energy efficiency and conservation.

The Meralco Energy Leadership Award will recognize schools for their exemplary initiatives to promote practices in electrical safety, energy efficiency and conservation.

One Meralco president Jeffrey Tarayao said it has long been an advocacy of Meralco to recognize public and private schools for their good initiatives in electricity conservation.

“We want teachers and students to deepen their understanding of the vital role energy plays in their lives. Since the DENR has a very good platform for environmental and energy advocacies through the National Search for Sustainable and Eco-friendly Schools, we decided to partner with them in this endeavor,” he said.

In 2008, the DENR-EMB initiated the nationwide search as a direct response to Republic Act No. 9512 or the Environmental Awareness and Education Act of 2008. It is also the Philippine’s initiative in support of the declaration of 2012 as ASEAN Environment Year and the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014).

Open to all public and private elementary, high schools and colleges, the search aims to encourage academic institutions to become more actively involved in environmental issues at the local level.

Cuna said the project also aims to develop skills and understanding among students, faculty and school administrators to initiate active practical responses and increase community awareness of and involvement in environmental concerns.

A total of nine schools will be declared eco-friendly champions in November in time for the national observance of the National Environmental Awareness Month.

The national search is a joint activity of the DENR through the EMB, the Department of Education, Commission on Higher Education, in cooperation with, Nestle Philippines, One Meralco Foundation and Smart Communications.

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES ENVIRONMENT YEAR AND THE UNITED NATIONS DECADE OF EDUCATION ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS AND EDUCATION ACT ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT BUREAU HIGHER EDUCATION JEFFREY TARAYAO JUAN MIGUEL CUNA MERALCO ENERGY LEADERSHIP AWARD NATIONAL SEARCH SUSTAINABLE AND ECO
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