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Austrian Business Community Witnessed the Awarding of the Winners of the Energy Globe Award for the Philippines

20. May 2014

The Austrian Embassy – Commercial Section, led by the Commercial Counsellor Lisa Koscak, organized an Austrian Business Community (ABC) meeting on 19 May 2015 at the New World Makati Hotel. The ABC also witnessed the awarding of the 2015 winners of the Energy Globe Award for the Philippines during the event.

The ABC meeting is a gathering of Austrian businessmen and Filipino partners of Austrian businesses in the Philippines. The guest speaker for the May 19th event was Governor Joey Salceda of Albay Province. Gov. Salceda shared the best practice example of disaster risk reduction and management from Albay Province, which has achieved an almost zero casualty in 18 years from major disaster events and recorded the fastest growth among the country’s 17 regions in 2013. The presentation of Gov. Salceda is consistent with the goal of the Energy Globe Award, which is the world’s most prestigious environmental award.

 

For 2015, the Energy Globe Foundation selected two Philippine projects as winners of the Energy Globe Award. These are Dr. David Manalo of FSSRI, University of the Philippines Los Baños for the “Bell and Bottle: Low cost early warning system for landslide prone communities in remote areas” and Mr. Apolinario Carino of the Pederasyon sa Nagkahiusang mga Mag-uuma nga Nanalipud ug Nagpasig-uli sa Kinaiyahan Inc. (PENAGMANNAKI) for the “Rainforestation: A community-based forest restoration initiative on Negros Island”. Dr. Manalo received the winner’s certificate from Commercial Counsellor Lisa Koscak and Gov. Salceda, as witnessed by Ambassador Josef Müllner, during the ABC meeting while the award for Mr. Carino will be presented at a later date.

 

Dr. Manalo’s Bell and Bottle project developed an innovative early warning system for landslide prone communities, which are often in hard-to-reach communities where modern transportation and communication facilities are lacking. The project established the critical rainfall rates at which landslide will most probably occur and the people were trained to use an empty soda bottle (cut into half and turned upside down) to measure the rainfall. Once the rainfall readings reached the critical rainfall rates, the people will hit the bells (made of old gas tanks) to inform and advice the whole community for preparation and evacuation to safe areas. 20 villages have already benefitted from the project and no more casualties were reported in the project site since the bell and bottle early warning system have been installed.

 

Mr. Carino’s Rainforestation project, on the other hand, implemented forest restoration farming by planting native or indigenous tree species in combination with agricultural crops. The 2-ha rainforestation demonstration site in Negros Oriental proved that planting indigenous and endemic trees can be done along with income-generating fruit trees, cash crops, ornamental plants and cut flowers which provided additional livelihood opportunities for the community. Six municipalities have since adopted the program thereby expanding the reforestation site from 2-ha to 300-ha, which also contributed to biodiversity conservation. Many endemic birds and other wildlife species can now be observed in these demonstration farms, which have also become famous for bird watching activities.

In the upcoming weeks many more national Energy Globe winners will be honored in their respective countries in co-operation with ADVANTAGE AUSTRIA, the foreign trade centers of the Austrian Economic Chamber. The winning projects range from high-tech to simple but effective ideas and provide answers to most of our environmental problems – be it through energy efficiency or renewable energy use or the careful use of our resources, such as water, etc.


All national Energy Globe winners from more than 170 countries will be introduced online at www.energyglobe.info in the realm of Energy Globe’s unique and global online Best Practice Week. Kick-off date is the UN World Environment Day on June 5th. Sustainable initiatives and innovative projects from around the world can be submitted again for Energy Globe Award 2016. All details and the entry form are available for download on www.energyglobe.info .

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