DENR National Capital Region through the Conservation Development Division (CDD) and South Field Office (SFO) removed 166 sacks of trash on the shores of Freedom Island located at the Las Pinas-Paranaque Wetland Park (LPPWP) on Saturday, 19 September 2020.

The activity was held in celebration of the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) 2020 which was led by LPPWP Park Superintendent Rey M.T. Aguinaldo and DENR-NCR South Field Office Deputy Chief Environmental Officer Bobby Tagapan.

The ICC is an annual activity that normally draws thousands of volunteers. It is a simultaneous cleanup of all waterways that connects with the ocean. The DENR National Capital Region leads the celebration of ICC in Metro Manila. However, in compliance with existing public health and safety protocols, DENR-NCR Regional Executive Director Jacqueline A. Caancan limited the participation of volunteers only from the selected DENR-NCR employees.

“Much as we wanted to accommodate numerous requests from private organizations and institutions to join the cleanup at LPPWP, we decided to put a premium on public health and encouraged our partners to do their cleanup in their homes or communities instead ”, Director Caancan explained.

Director Caancan also directed all officials and employees of the DENR-NCR who are at home to conduct a cleanup and analysis of the waste their household generates and submit the results to the Ocean Conservancy using the Clean Swell app.  The trash that we usually find on the shores of Manila Bay come from our houses, Director Caancan pointed out. “If we want to participate in the cleanup of our oceans and Manila Bay, the best way to do so is to start at home. We must educate the members of our household to practice waste reduction and proper management of wastes that come from our houses”, Director Caancan added. “Safe Oceans Start At Home” is this year’s theme for the ICC 2020.