Wednesday, November 14, 2018
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Green jobs—an ecological challenge and opportunity

We are living today in an era of great ecological challenges and opportunities. “Greening” is perhaps the best solution, but the transition to a green job economy is not a simple matter of economics or entrepreneurship. There has to be massive realignment of government policies and practices. A green-collar economic revolution will need workable partnerships among government, businessmen, consumers, workers, social justice activists, environmentalists, students, the church and faith organizations, and everybody who hates to see a soon extinct planet Earth.

Inconvenient truth

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Nobel Laureate Al Gore, famous for his documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth”, is perhaps the most serious advocate on global warning. He was quoted as saying that in 100 years, 50 percent of all species will be lost, including the Philippine eagle, already among the endangered species. In Tacloban city last March 12, 2016, Gore said that 13.5 million Filipinos must be relocated over time due to rising sea levels in the Philippines that are three to four times greater than in other areas of the world.

What is extremely inconvenient is the truth that there’s a lot more rhetoric and polemics than real solutions being put in place to address global warming. On one hand, world leaders would converge and sign a pact to arrest global warming and climate change. As they return to their countries, their governments continue to propagate the use of fossil fuel, natural gas and coal that account for 30 billion tons of carbon emission annually.

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Broad coalition

Obviously, government cannot be expected to have the political will to change the status quo. The corruptive power of the market is too great for politicians to handle. The church and faith organizations are sometimes more credible to the masses, but never really took a stand on global warming and climate change. All we hear is that with prayers, great abundance and wealth will come their way from heaven. The ordinary poor people are too engrossed in eking out a living, if you can call it that. The environmentalists sound like a voice in the wilderness. For real change to happen, all these social partners must work together. But first, they must realize that the lives they’re trying to save are their own.

Organized labor, though dwindling in ratio to total workforce, remains the best defender of the rights of working people. They should look beyond wage issues and participate in creating green jobs. Social justice activists should embrace environmental issues and realize that arresting climate change will ensure a better workplace, where LGBT, diversity and human rights are respected. Students are the most energetic and enthusiastic group to wave the green flag and task all sectors of society to address global warming. Students will inherit the world in due time. Church and faith organizations that advance reverence for all creation must take a stand and join the fight against climate change, lest God’s creation becomes extinct. Environmentalists need to realize that they cannot change the world alone. They must collaborate with all sectors of society and make their cause a shared responsibility. Believe me, governance for a greener planet is too serious an issue to be left with government.

PMAP Summit

On April 12-13, 2016, the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP) led by President Jesse Rebustillo and the PMAP Foundation led by Chairman Orly Peña and President PilarNenucaAlmira are holding the first PMAP Foundation Summit on Clean Air and Climate Change. With its theme “Clean Air: Our Life, Our Future”, the Summit will be graced by the Keynote Speaker, DENR Secretary Ramon Paje, at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila.

The Summit shall feature:

PMAP member-companies’ contribution to clean air and climate change, issues, best practices, and future programs

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New trends, innovation, technology and BEST Practices for members to consider or adopt, showcasing an exhibition of users, suppliers, and innovations

Non-traditional sources of financing for entrepreneurs and small businesses engaged in promoting clean air and climate change
International agencies engaged in clean air and climate change

ISO standards to guide companies, NGOs and communities engaged in clean air and climate change projects

AWARDS to recognize leaders and achievers in clean air and climate change

For the first time in the Philippines, PMAP shall grant the PunongBayaningKalikasan (National Leadership) Award and the BayaningKalikasan Awards for individual, corporate, NGO, and community categories.

For inquiry or registration, please contactpmapfounda- tion2@pmap.org.ph or call 726-1532.

This is PMAP’s answer to the global call for action on climate change, where the Philippines is a signatory to the recent Paris agreement on global warming and climate change. Also, this is pursuant to Republic Act 8749, the Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999, which needs more implementation.

Let’s wave the green flag – for our children and their children’s children.

(Ernie is the 2013 Executive Director and 1999 President of the People Management Association of the Philippines (PMAP); Chair of the AMCHAM Human Capital Committee; and Co-Chair of ECOP’s TWG on Labor and Social Policy Issues. He also chairs the Accreditation Council for the PMAP Society of Fellows in People Management. He is President and CEO of EC Business Solutions and Career Center. Contact him at ernie_cecilia@yahoo.com)

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