(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Peoples Journal Tonight  - Wednesday, April 17, 2013


SPENDING the Holy Week in our home-town in Talisay City on Negros island is a family event that we always look forward to with excitement and joy each year.

Personally, I find it very enjoyable to be in our farm, bonding with our farmhands and their families while reflecting on the passion and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Our family role as sponsor of the Santo Entierro is vital as it completes the Church’s commemoration of the “Passion and Life of Christ.”

On Good Friday, we joined the procession and escorted the life size image of Santo Entierro to San Nicolas Church which overflows with devotees each year, with the number constantly growing.

We braved the blistering heat as the sun burned our skin to a crisp during the procession. It was an experience we accepted, bringing us closer to the Lord in His sufferings for humankind.

This time of the year, the summer heat was no joke. The heat could be felt at its worst even in a provincial setting where supposedly we expected a cooler temperature!

Looking around, one could witness withering plants, crops dying and our rivers and watersheds drying up.

As we returned to Manila, we were welcomed by an even worst climate due to the presence of heat-inducing concrete roads and pavements and pollution everywhere.

As of this writing, northern countries are still experiencing an extended  winter instead of enjoying the onset of spring.

Heavy, unpredictable rains and long droughts obviously have become the two early environmental culprits this year.

Globally, the economy remains stagnant, if not regressing. Should this continue, we can expect a migration of both species and people to climates and environments that they can adapt to. This is dictated by the instinct of survival we all knows.

It is already happening – which raises fears. Why? Because I believe that climate change migration will not work for species except on temporary basis for some.

Consider the polar bear whose icy home in the Arctic is melting fast. Polar bears will never adapt to anything less than the icy-cold habitat they are used to. Soon, they will join others in the dreaded ‘list of extinction.’

This is what I fear most: That their extinction will gravely affect the balance of our eco-system. Any imbalance will be life-threatening to all of us as a civilization.

Despite all the economic woes, development is moving full blast in our country and elsewhere. This reminds me of the 1997 Asian crisis which  left Thailand with over-development at the expense of their water. It proves that over-development is not the answer to any economic problem, including ours.

However, the same Thailand scenario can happen to our beautiful land. What an irony – our country is rich in natural resources and strategically-located at the center of the Coral Triangle.

We all need to think collectively about self-reliance, resourcefulness, organic and environment-friendly lifestyle in order to survive these challenging times.

We need to stand up and speak against global polluters. There must be no exception, including all those who cater to their demands and lobby for their self-serving agenda.

The international conferences I have been attending for decades now led only to green washing exercises of good rhetoric yet nothing effective enough to save our planet.

I have been there: A conference to identify the  polluters and stop them from  destroying our planet, a conference that will reduce greenhouse gases (GHG) and restore carbon dioxide to 350ppm needed to sustain the planet.

What will happen to more than 2 billion people currently having no access to water and sanitation? Their number is growing alongside their dire poverty.

Sadly, greed and materialism coupled with narrow economics and politics of destruction, riddled with experts’ arrogance and negotiability – these are the ingredients of deception placing our planet at stake.

To all those who are sincere and honest in the advocacy, I urge you all to stand up and fight for your basic right to clean air and water!

We all must follow what Pope Francis said: Protect the poor and the sick, protect all God’s creatures and the environment.”

Let us keep fighting for the use of  renewable energy for massive reforestation, for recycling and reusing, for sustainable use, for organic life style.

We must stand up against  anything detrimental to our health, our lives, our future, and our environment.

We need progress that safely sustains the lives of all.





(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Philippine Daily Inquirer  - Friday, April 12, 2013


You must have noticed the high temperatures and the blistering heat now bearing down on us. What’s even worse is the variance between the temperature and the real feel of the heat. That tells us a lot.


Summer has truly set in, bringing the heat that dries our lakes and rivers and saps the energy from the frail human body mostly composed of water. Amidst the heat, thunderstorms occur and rains pour, causing destructive flash floods.


People and animals get sick, and new diseases appear. Deserts continue to expand, claiming prime land and destroying our soil. The weather cannot be predicted anymore.


A call for a new development model is echoing worldwide as countries fall on austerity measures compounded by the shortage of food and water. Higher rates are imposed by the International Monetary Fund.


Poverty continues to rise and more Arab Springs are in the making. Cyprus is the latest victim, its financial system in near-collapse.


Yet, despite all the calamities and the continued pronouncements that climate change is the single most critical threat to humankind and the planet, the old development model continues to bully the weak and to accelerate the pace of extraction of minerals.


But many are taking matters in their own hands and are doing volunteer work to mitigate the effects of climate change. Yes, things are changing, and with the election of Pope Francis, who advocates “helping the poor and the sick, all creatures and the environment,” there is hope.


People will hopefully get the message that God’s creation is being destroyed.


“There is a time when silence is a sign of betrayal,” Martin Luther King once said. And this is such a time. It is a time for all to make their voices heard. The louder their voices are directed to all leaders, from local governments to every head of state in the world, the better.


It is time to act and wage war on global warming and climate change. It is time to bite the bullet and step on the brakes against false development and progress. It is time to follow Germanys’ lead to go full-blast on renewable energy like solar and wind power. It is showing the way; we must follow its good example.


We must remember that Mother Nature sustains us all. We need to protect her from all pressure. She cannot take much more of human-induced pollution and climate change.


Make your voice heard. Take action in your own way. Lower your carbon footprint. Perhaps we may still have a chance to save our planet, our only home.





(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Peoples Journal Tonight  - Wednesday, April 3, 2013


TO my surprise, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, Commander of the United States fleet in the Pacific, mentioned in a recent Boston Globe interview, that “the biggest threat is not North Korea,  but climate change.”

Coming from a seasoned Naval Commander, this brings to the fore the seriousness of global warming and climate change.

We ourselves are witnesses to unpredictable global weather patterns. Consider the extreme and severe winter storms in Europe and in the United States, along with the droughts and extreme heat in Africa and the Middle East and the unusual rains all over Asia. These all occur too fast, too soon!

What is disheartening is that when these natural calamities happen news headlines focus more on current events and the economy rather than major disturbing weather patterns. Much like the truth being taken for granted.

Let’s face it: The planet is dying and we are virtually mindless about it.

Sure, some concession came – the killing of sharks, was banned during the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) recently held in Bangkok, Thailand.

However, they want to mine the deep seas. Their careless decision, or perhaps their lack of foresight, are killing people in mining-affected communities.

Admiral Locklear’s statement only confirmed what many fear about the life threatening dangers of climate change.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) seems to be a complete failure in tis mandate to curb and mitigate greenhouse gases. It also failed to limit atmospheric carbon dioxide to 350ppm which is the level needed to sustain life.

As of this writing, we have reached over 395ppm and we are experiencing the horrible consequences.

To make it worse, global poverty as well as over-population are both on the rise. Food shortages are occurring in many areas while clean water resources are starting to dry up.

Recently, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) mentioned that Asia will be running short  of water by 2030. It may be sooner than that, as we continue to build on the same development model we were brought up with.

This model is a failure and the root cause of stagflation in the global economy. This is the so-called “development model” that destroys our natural resources. Isn’t that a misnomer?

I cannot understand the callousness and lack of action from our world leaders. Where is their political will?

What worst scenario must arise to compel them to act rationally and fast?

We need an urgent and radical change from this complacent attitude! We need a quantum leap of change, specifically in life style, education, production and consumption.

We have to upgrade our value systems and the footprints we make as our legacy.

Our biodiversity is dying. This is no joke, as others may think it is. The deserts are expanding from the Sahara in Africa to the Gobi desert in China. Even the city of Beijing is being engulfed by toxic, dark air.

How can people be so blind?

The planet cannot sustain this present development model. The sooner we accept that as a grim reality, the better for all of us.

We cannot afford to wait. Nowadays, the awareness is running high that more and more people are starting to take  matters into their own hands.

Volunteerism is on the rise as youth and adults alike get deeply involved in mangrove and terrestrial reforestation. Coastal clean-up activities are becoming visible as well as setting up sanctuaries for endangered species such as turtles.

We need to do much more than these to help in speeding up the planet’s healing process. We need to step on the brakes regarding manmade pollutions.

We can opt to use renewables instead. We can reforest our mountains and protect our forest. We can stop ocean-acidification and marine pollution. We can slow down our carbon footprint.

WE CAN WIN this battle against climate change.

It is a war we cannot afford to lose.






Environment Press Release - The Visayan Daily Star, Monday March 4, 2013


A mangrove planting with feeding and outreach program was recently held in Barangay Punta Taytay, Bacolod City, by the Ecological Society of the Philippines and the JRS Express, a press release from organizers said.

The activity was phase one of the group’s environmental and humanitarian project title “ESP 2013: A Green Crusade”, that aims to contribute to massive reforestation and spread the volunteerism campaign to help protect and rehabilitate the environment.

A seminar was also participated in by residents, with ESP volunteer project organizer, Malu Gacuma, discussing the use and benefits of solar cooking to save trees and help combat climate change in the grassroots level, the press release also said.

The parabolic solar cooker was conceptualized by ESP president and JRS Express chief executive officer Antonio M. Claparols.

Around 100 poorest of the poor children received two kilos of rice and several pairs of Burlington socks, and were treated to chicken arrozcaldo, sandwiches, juice and candies.

The project was in partnership with Burlington Socks Industries Philippines, International Order of DeMolay-Serafin V. Aguilar Chapter Chapter and Free and Accepted Masons of the Philippines-Kanlaon Lodge No. 64 and the Barangay Council of Punta Tayta, the press release added.







(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Peoples Journal Tonight  - Wednesday, February 20, 2013


THE new year has barely began and we are faced  with so many pressures.


·         The northeastern seaboard of the United Sates has experienced the worse snowstorm in years. The extreme weather has affected everything from travel to food security and power.

·         The lives of the people in New England have been subjected to one of the worst snow storms ever.

·         The worsening man-induced climate change has placed the most powerful country in the world on a stop-and-survive mode.

Why are we allowing all these to happen?

While the U.S. and Europe freeze, the rest of the world also suffers the same fate. Snow, rain and sleet cover many northern countries; ex-treme heat and drought impact on other areas.

With all that, what has befallen our planet and its people?

With all the strange, unpredictable natural calamities, there does not seem to be a big push forward to combat global warming and climate change.

Leaders focus more on how to revive the economy. Yet, the world economy struggles from a downward route, shown by the rise of un-employment, poverty and global crisis everywhere.

Is there no amount of stimulus anymore to re-charge the economy?  Many must be unaware that even over-printing of paper money contributes to the ongoing global inflation.

The austerity measures to be imposed in the United States, Europe and other countries will eventually take their toll on the people.

One can expect the rise of problems such as lesser health and medical services, lesser welfare and lesser social security.

What many have labored so hard for so many years, in the form of savings and retirement benefits, will only go down along with the system that is going broke. Is this the promised picture of progress and development world leaders continue to assure us of?

We are dismayed by the slow action being taken by the same world leaders. Hence, we are urging our leaders to take the lead now and win the battle against global warming and climate change.

The world has reached a stage of ecological disasters, and of ecological irreversibility.

We are running out of clean water and food. Our forests continue to be illegally-logged. Our mountains continue to be horribly mined.

Mining companies want to extract the last ounce of gold and silver commensurate to their vested interests.

Unless we move against such abuses, we become the victim. Should we allow them to continue with their wanton destruction of our environment?

I am happy to see that there are now more and more people aware of the urgent environmental protection and rehabilitation our planet needs. This offers hope that the battle against climate change can be reversed.

More and more people especially the young have embarked on volunteerism and enhancing the environment.

Our numbers continue to grow as more and more volunteers, especially the youth, step up.

It is a slow but sure process. All efforts will reap beneficial results.

I know that hope springs eternal.

·         We embark on massive reforestation projects, conduct seminars on the use and benefits of solar cookers to save our trees, widen mangrove forests, save some endangered species  and push for “zero waste” models in the metropolis and elsewhere.

·         We must de-progress and step on the brakes on problems about extraction and pollution.

For what good is development if, in return, we are made to breathe polluted and toxic air such as what people in Beijing live with.

Time is not on our side. Everyone must do something for the good of our environment.

Many can start right in their own household or by adopting disciplined lifestyle. Imagine what we can achieve if we collectively agree to save our dying planet

The echo a wise saying: “It is not even a choice we have to make. It is our responsibility.”






(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Peoples Journal Tonight  - Wednesday, February 6, 2013


THE 97,030 square-meter Tubbataha is a World Heritage site and a UNESCO-protected marine park famed for its beauty and diversity.

It is considered one of the best dives sites in the world, having two coral atolls that harbor a wide range of marine species including 600 species of fish, 360 species of corals, 11 species of sharks, 13 species of dolphins and whales, 100 species of birds, and sea turtles.

How on earth can a U.S. warship, so technologically-advanced, run aground in a world-re-nowned coral reef?

Despite its zonar, radar, GPS and other highly-sophisticated equipment, the USS Guardian, a 68-meter-long U.S. Navy minesweeper, recently hit and destroyed part of the Tubbataha reef in the Sulu Sea.

The warship reportedly had “technical problems” that made it difficult to steer its way against a storm path, thus it got marooned on the reef.

The see accident caused damage to more than 1,000 square meters of corals.

The presence of USS Guardian in a protected area is questionable. It clearly violates sections 19 and 26 of Republic Act 10067 known as the “Tubbataha Reefs National Parks Act of 2009.”

The United States Navy recently offered its apology over the incident, but is apology enough to compensate for the damage done?

Experts said that it takes “10 years for the said reefs just to grow an inch”. They conclude that it could take “more than 10,000 years before the corals will regrow to their previous state.”

What good can a mere apology do? Albeit apology accepted, the United States government must still be legally-compelled to pay our government for the damaged reefs.

What is the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) doing about it? It has to step into the picture to hasten the process deemed needed.

The vessel still remains in the reef and the damage will get much worse if the warship is not removed.

Should the ship have nuclear arms and the usual ordnance and fire power present in every warship, then we are in for a much worse scenario.

The ship can sink, explode and spread its devastation all over the Sulu Sea. Salvage operation must be done – and fast!

We cannot cry over spilt oil or fuel! We cannot afford another se disaster!

On the global front, the environment is a victim of global warming and climate change as well as pollutions and ocean acidification.

Our natural resources are in dire danger. Yet, doubts prevail on how to save the planet.

Sadly, the environmental movement seems slower than expected. Environmental laws, such as RA 10067, must be obeyed at all cost.

Violators must be dealt with accordingly. It is the moral responsibility not only of environmentalists, but of each Filipino, to urge our government to implement to law. The time for excuses is over.

Saving the planet starts by saving and protecting our own territory. To do that, there is no room for any excuse.

Not even an apology.






(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Peoples Journal Tonight  - Wednesday, January 30, 2013


igorotAS of this writing, scourging heat embraces ‘down under’ as Australia heats up like it has never done before. Already deemed as half a desert, its aridity seems to expand enormously.

The climate change debate is indeed beginning to reel off in Australia.

Meanwhile, in Beijing, the smog and polluted air are both taking their toll on the population.

Despite the danger, the business-as-usual attitude prevails at a faster rate in this emerging economic giant, with its 1.4 billion citizens all at stake. I Wonder how this pollution directly effects their respiratory health and well-being?

China must act now, it being the biggest emitter of green-house gases, overtaking the United States.

The atmospheric carbon dioxide has reportedly reached over 390ppm (parts per million) and its exponential growth will go over the 2-4 degrees C threshold needed to sustain life and reverse the destruction of our planet.

This cannot go on and must be changed for the better. Many are taking the lead to combat and abate climate change, both here and abroad.

No country can ever boast of its economic or industrial progress and development, based alone on its Gross National Product or the amount of gold reserves it holds, it its own people and environment both become  unwitting “collateral damage”.

farmerIn his book entitled “The World Until Yesterday,” Jared Diamond said it was barely 75 years  ago when transformation of traditional societies from being self-sufficient island states (where they do things on a sustainable method) is a far cry compared to today’s over-consumptive and wasteful societies.

The author underscored that disputes then were solved by dialogues held around a tribal fire, ending up in peace for the nation.

How ironic that today, with presence of unbeatable judges and panels of lawyers, cases usually end up even more complicated, seldom in peace.

When will we learn from history and traditional societies?

Internationally, Warren Buffett has increased his investment in the solar power industry to over $2.5 billion.

In Germany, the government continues to invest heavily on cheap solar and wind power after its commitment to veer away from nuclear energy, stemming from Japan’s tragic nuclear plant experience.

Shouldn’t genuine progress of a country be gauged simply by the richness of its environment and happiness of its people?

This is not a Utopian benchmark. This exists. It can be possible. One only has to travel to a small, remote, humble and yet happy place called Bhutan.

In the local setting, notice how more and more initiatives, such as introducing the use and benefits of solar-cooking and strengthening massive reforestations projects, contribute to environmental progress.

Education and advocacies may spread throughout schools and communities like wildfire, with lifetime influences that can be handed to our succeeding generations.

igorot placeHowever, like wildfire also, the initiative can easily wane if we do not nurture the collective attitude necessary for such endeavors.

Would we allow ourselves to be merely fence-sitters, watching, waiting for consequences to unfold, until we are next in line to suffer from environmental hazards?

Or should be challenge ourselves to do all we can so that we can redirect  this worsening environmental scenario both continents are experiencing ahead of us?

I reiterate that this is possible! A green crusade has to continue at all cost.

We all must do our share onwards as the UNFCCC continues to move backward after the futile Doha climate change conference. They talk, we walk. Words against action. Simple.

We must learn from traditional societies and the norms of old.

Let results eventually be the judge.





(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Inquirer Opinion - Tuesday, January 15, 2013


sandy The year 2012 passed into history with a record-breaking number of calamities: floods, droughts, storms, supertyphoons. Calamities hit the planet, all in extreme degrees, sparing no country.

The United Kingdom experienced the worst flooding in years. Ukraine and its neighbors went through extreme cold weather conditions; it “stood still” as the winter snow breached -27 degrees Centigrade.

In our country, an unusual pattern of weather disturbances took shape, causing unprecedented destruction in parts of Mindanao that through decades have come to be considered “storm-free.”

2012 broke both the “hottest” and “coldest” weather records.

How can we forget Superstorm “Sandy” after it humbled the United States, the most powerful country in the world, when it pummeled its eastern seaboard and the cities of New York and New Jersey, and left them in a “state of calamity.”

Frankly, I expected that after Sandy, the United States and the world would wake up and seriously tackle the urgent issue of battling global warming and climate change. But I was wrong.

droughtThe concerned leaders are looking instead into accelerating consumption and production. This is tantamount to spewing more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, thus increasing their countries’ contribution to the worsening unpredictability of global weather patterns.

This is eco-suicide! Did anybody else ever notice?

In Doha, Qatar, the parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change failed again to reach an agreement that would abate and mitigate global warming and climate change.

Do the world leaders see all the strange climatic disasters? Are they so blinded by greed and an insatiable lust for power that they refuse to take a stand? How can they not see even the simplest indicators such as whales and big fish beaching themselves? Or the common occurrence of red tide, algae blooms and fish kills? Or the continuing ocean acidification and Arctic ice meltdown? The list goes on.

Are they waiting for Greenland to disappear from the map to convince themselves that global warming is real? Why can’t the world learn from Germany whose economy is moving ahead, with solar power replacing nuclear power as its main source of energy? Germany has disproved the claim that harnessing solar energy slows down progress.

marine environmentWe must follow Germany’s lead and abandon the world’s present “development model of destruction.”

Sadly, renewable energy development slowed down in 2011 and 2012, according to Bloomberg Energy. If this is any indicator of how things will be, then the future is bleak for our planet.

Still, we look forward to a new and challenging year, bearing in mind the worst calamities of 2012, but confident that mankind is up to this point still in a position to prevent the conditions that could lead to greater disasters.

For a better year to come, let us learn from the year that was.





(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Tonight - Wednesday, January 2, 2013


THE Doha climate change talks are over. As expected, nothing was agreed upon to mitigate greenhouse gases.

Another victory? Yes, but or global warming and climate change polluters. It appears climate change talks these days are more like fish markets, by comparison, where negotiations occur.

What happened to the “polluter pays” principle? Shouldn’t polluters be compelled to pay for the damages – both irreversible and not – that they do to the world and to humanity?

Should they not be subjected to absolute justice leading to permanent cessation of their carbon-polluting enterprises?

This is a MUST! This must be in the agenda of any earnest discussion to combat climate change. But this is not what is happening in reality. Instead, their so called “negotiations” preclude the necessary solutions to this global threat we are all experiencing now.

This is not any corporation’s planet. This is our planet and polluters must pay for the life threatening carbon dioxide they have emitted.  Consequentially, green house gases continue to rise.

Major polluters are relentless in their ways, without a hint of rendering apologies nor payments and good will – just denial and full blast pollution.

Our country is currently declared under “state of calamity” after the carnage brought forth by typhoon Pablo in Mindanao which was once typhoon-free. Many lives were lost and agricultural damages reached over Php9 billion as of this writing.

Who will pay for this damage? Who will account for the lives lost?

A typhoon may be a natural calamity with unpredictable pattern. Yet, to b aggravated, if not induced, by climate change due to man-made pollution is a different story. This is where we have to wrestle with major polluters!

They cause carbon dioxide to reach more than 390ppm in our atmosphere. The continuing increase in carbon dioxide will exceed the estimates and the Earth’s temperature is seen to rise over the 2 degrees Centigrade level.

Should we allow them to continue with their unyielding attitude, our planet will experience more devastating calamities never experienced before.

The world is now caught in a tight situation because of these polluters’ greed.

No amount of adaptation will save or secure us unless we win this battle against major polluters.

The Arctic ice now melts even faster. Species are going extinct. Water and food both are running dry as devastation creeps into the earth.

Do we need to experience more?

We must reforest our mountains and mangroves. We must protect whatever little is left. We must protect our oceans. We must go organic and stop industrial plantations. The list goes on.

We had been warned of peak oil and food, of peak water and clean air. They are happening now.

All the signs are clear.

We are following the history of Easter Island and what caused its extinction. Let us learn from history.

Let us unite and strengthen our resolve to win this battle against global warming and climate change, for our children and their future.

I daresay, we must also do our share and we can do it.

We are not appealing anymore. It’s about time to stop being  passive.







(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Tonight - Wednesday, December 19, 2012


IN the 19970’s, our family used to go scubadiving almost every weekend. Traveling all over the country for family enjoyment, I still recall how rich and pristine were the coral reefs and how the seas and their shores enthralled us. The mountains then teeming with forests left us in awe.

During our younger days, we used to play in a creek close to our backyard. The waters were crystal clear. We enjoyed the sight of lots of guppies! It was fun to follow the creek down and explore its mystery and marvel.

It was called the Maricaban Creek in Pasay. It traversed through Makati leading to Manila Bay.

The creek played an important role in our young lives. It helped shape our convictions to be responsible citizens.

We used to believe then, young as we were, that we belonged to the generations that could change things: ‘make a difference’, ‘save the world’, ‘rally in the streets’ and “give peace a chance”. These lines became our mantra.

Our young imagination was fueled by the troubled times. Who would not dream to be heroes or close to being such? At the back of my mind then, I had always wanted our natural environment to be protected. It is worth the fight since it is our home.

Today, that creek has lost its marvel. It still exists but without guppies in its waters, now turned so dirty. It is a mystery to me where the vast greenery next to the creek, such as the cogon fields, has gone.

Taking over the rustic environment is a vertical, urban jungle that has no biodiversity.

Now, I feel as if we failed. All efforts and struggles seem to be strained against those who make Mother Earth a dying planet. Our ecological richness was at its best and yet we fought to converse it – in vain. Today, the scenario has extremely changed. The planet is heating up un-controllably to dangerous levels.

We are being battered by pressures beyond our control. Climate change is becoming an enemy as worst as the global polluters causing it. This must be stopped and we must prepare for what is to come. To ensure economic progress, we always advocate for self -sufficiency based on our rich natural resources and bounty of our mountains and seas.

Let us do our share and restore our environment that we used to have. De-progress, restore and save our ecology for our children and the future generations to come.

Environment, after all, has to be nurtured. Not for the way it was but for the way it should be.





(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Tonight - Wednesday, December 12, 2012


AS I write this, super typhoon “Pablo” has cut a swath of massive destruction on Mindanao, an island that was once free from typhoons. Mindanao which takes pride in its pineapple and banana plantations, is one part of our country which is considered best for those agricultural products that are sensitive to rainfall.

Ironically, as of this writing, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is meeting in Doha to address the mitigations of greenhouse gases and win the battle against climate change.

With super storm Sandy causing its recent devastation in the U.S. eastern Seaboard, it was hoped that the United States, under newly re-elected President Barack Obama, would take the lead in the climate change talks.

The very first indication that they are truly responding to the urgency of the times would be for them to sign the Kyoto protocol and make sure that greenhouse gases are reduced significantly. They must ensure these greenhouse  gases are reduced to 350 rpm needed to sustain life on earth.

Many warnings have already been echoed on the irreversibility of the Earth’s temperatures, now increasing over the 2 degrees Centigrade mark.

Fears have been echoed that once the Earth’ s temperatures surpass the 4 degrees Centigrade level, this would cause a disaster for both living and non-living creatures.

There are reports that we have already neared, if not reached, such threatening  stage.

The World Bank, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) are some of the many institutions that have repeatedly called out this global concern.

With 2012 being the hottest year of record, with the flooding in Asia and South America, with super storms like Sandy and the continued droughts and floods that plagued the planet this year, these issues are everyone’s concern, not just homework for the experst.

And yet, as I finish this article, we can witness freezing weather in the northern parts of China and those countries in Europe.

With winter not officially calendared, the ice and snow arrived in advance, in deadly chill, all over the Northern Hemisphere.

The year is now ending with a typhoon impacting on an island whose plantations heretofore had less experience with such great devastations.

Nature will continue to lash out until  her message of help will be heeded.

Should the COP talk in Doha fail, which I am certain it will, then we must take things in our own hands. In our own little way, so that together we would make the much-needed difference!

Resilience and perseverance, these are but two of the keywords.

Yes, it will be a year to remember.

Wouldn’t it be best to remember 2012 for its great significance to, and not of utter negligence of, this environment we call our home?





(By: Antonio M. Claparols - President ESP) Philippine Daily Inquirer - Opinion, Monday, November 5, 2012


WINTER STARTED early and Hurricane “Sandy” came late and without mercy. And it was no ordinary hurricane; it was dubbed “Frankenstorm” because of the monstrous destruction it threatened to wreak on the entire eastern seaboard of the United States.

Sandy came at a time pre-destined by the heavens and nature—just a week before the presidential elections in the United States, the most powerful country in the world yet so meek before the wrath of nature.

One would think that after a series of “unusual” natural calamities over the years, the issue of global warming and climate change would be fully accepted by now and the need to mitigate atmospheric carbon dioxide tackled and solved. But skeptics remain, insisting that global warming and climate change are either a hoax or a paranoid doom merchant’s commodity.

What more proof do the skeptics want? Are superstorms and unusual global weather patterns not enough?

The Financial Times warned that the issue of climate change, if not addressed with urgency, can bring temperatures to rise to over 6 degrees Centigrade.

According to Jeremy Leggett, a convenor of the United Kingdom’s Task Force on Peak Oil and Energy Security, “a third of Xstrata’s revenues come from coal. Atmospheric research centers are telling governments that unless greenhouse gas emissions from coal, oil and gas are slashed, we are heading for a 6-degree Centigrade rise in global temperatures. That would be economically and environmentally catastrophic.”

Imagine the polar ice melting and finally gone. Imagine the monster storms and devastating droughts. Imagine an increase of temperature to over 6 percent. Imagine the billions of people who already are affected by poverty.

We don’t want to sound like the dreaded prophets of doom. Yet, that seems to be the scenario unless we mitigate and win the war against global warming.

It is alarming to learn that the Philippines is one of the countries to be most impacted by global warming. We cannot just sit still. We need to shout out loud and lead the way toward climate change negotiations. We need to take action both here and abroad.

We need to adapt and mitigate in our own way global warming and climate change through continuous reforesting programs and by raising a buffer of healthy forests on our mountains.

We need to protect our coastlines and seas with mangrove forests and wetlands, since the seas are the last “bastion” of food supply for our people.

We must protect and enhance our habitats and ecosystems.

The present development model must be changed! As they say, “de-progress” and educate our children so that they may help and understand the causes and effects of global warming and climate change which now threaten their future.

An adage puts it simply: “Deciding and doing are two different things.” We must decide now and do something now. This is the only way we can all win the looming war for survival.





This documentary explores the startling phenomenon of ocean acidification, which may soon challenge marine life on a scale not seen for tens of millions of years.

The film was made to raise awareness about the largely unknown problem of ocean acidification, which poses a fundamental challenge to life in the seas and the health of the entire planet.

Like global warming, ocean acidification stems from the increase of carbon dioxide in the earth’s atmosphere since the start of the Industrial Revolution.

Leading scientific experts on the problem, many of whom appear in the film, believe that it’s possible to cut back on global warming pollution, improve the overall health and durability of our oceans, and prevent serious harm to our world, but only if action is taken quickly and decisively.

Watch the full documentary now