TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte — Saying that the country is already experiencing the adverse effects of global warming and climate change, Presidential Assistant for Climate Change Elisea Gozun urged the public to go into mitigation and adaptation activities.
Gozun was the speaker in a recent Climate Change Forum and Greening the Environment activity initiated by the Bureau of Internal Revenue in Eastern Visayas.

Gozun, a former Environment Secretary, said humans are contributory to the release of greenhouse gases, which is the cause of climate change.

Thus, she called on the public to think of ways on how to realign their day-to-day activities making sure that they do not become greenhouse producers.

Gozun said there are many ways to ease the adverse effects of climate change. She enumerated the green acts to protect the environment, including conserving energy and water; improving energy efficiency; shift to alternative, renewable fuel (no fossil fuel); improving/supporting mass transport system; encouraging more walking and biking (non-motorized transit); controlling urban sprawl – more compact, multiple use development; composting, recycling and reusing (Ecological Solid Waste Management); stopping the burning of wastes or garbage.

Gozun proposes a lifestyle change to address climate change. After all, addressing climate change rests not only in the hands of government officials but also in the hands of every consumer.

This is the reason why Gozon cited Director Diosdao Mendoza and the entire BIR Eastern Visayas office for spearheading the activity.

“There is a need to bring down the discussion of climate change down to each and every citizen, the consumers,” Gozun said. The real people in power are the groups of action-oriented people who have the capacity to influence their circle of influence to make better lifestyle changes, she added.

Reducing the use of body mists or body sprays, or hair sprays can help mitigate the adverse effects of climate change, Gozun told the college students who attended the forum.

She said the mere turning off of the faucet while brushing one’s teeth, can conserve the precious water, whose supply is also threatened because of climate change. Guzon Gozun suggested the use of drinking glass when brushing one’s teeth to conserve water.

She also said taking out plugs for appliances not in use saves 10-20 percent of energy consumption.

Gozun also suggested turning off lights that are not being used. Unknown to many consumers, she said, electric companies charge double for energy consumption during peak times.

She added that painting the ceiling or roofing with a light color makes it absorb less heat, thus, keeping the space cooler.

Gozun pointed out that even the construction of houses and buildings must be made with climate change in mind. Today, the stilt house and the green house are the “in” thing again.

There is a wealth of ways by which people can reduce the carbon footprint while cutting down on costs. It’s just that the information is not always available to a lot of people, Gozun said. (PIA8)