Manila's Water Shortage: How We Can Help

My home, Metro Manila, the Philippines' capital, is currently experiencing water shortage. I don't know what the real cause is -- mismanagement on the side of our water provider, government corruption, or the environment getting back at humanity's irresponsible acts.

Whatever it is, there is no turning back from the crisis we're facing. All we can do now is to help solve the problem, whichever way we can. Here are some practices all of us can apply wherever we are in the world:

  • Just use what you need, even if you're not in your own homes. Being in a hotel doesn't mean you can consume excessive amounts of water... Sure, you're privileged to use all the water that you want, but it's your duty, as a citizen of this world, to conserve our finite resources.
  • Report leaks when you see it (or try to fix it, if you can). Don't be shy -- ask the guard or the housekeeping crew for help. They'll be more than willing to attend to your needs.

I'd like to say I'm smart and wise on matters involving spending and saving -- be it on money, electricity, or material things. On most occasions, I don't over-consume. I know how to balance my expenses, necessities, and indulgences.

But this problem were facing made me wiser, not just in my consumption of water but other life-sustaining resources as well. It grounded me more, taught me to cut down on some luxuries, and to only consume what is needed in my daily life. Here are some scenarios which I hope would inspire you to do the same:

  • We were at a restaurant awhile ago, and while I can afford to buy an extra dish that I was sort of craving for, I chose not to because I'm 101% sure we've already ordered enough.
  • About 2-3 months ago, I gave (and threw) out a lot of clothes, accessories, and things that have no use in my life anymore. But this morning, as I opened my cabinet, I found more clothes that I wanted to let go. They are still in good quality, but I felt like giving them out because I haven't worn them for more than 3 months already. I made a mental checklist to donate these to people who might need them more. I'll update you on my progress.
  • I remembered this product I used 2 weeks ago. It's a bag from EcoNest that looks like plastic, but it's actually not. It's made from cassava plants, and will decompose after 180 days. I tried it out, brought it with me to my recent travels to Florida, and served as my go-to bag for spontaneous trips to the beach. I used one bag more than once, got it wet from my beach wear, and noticed how different it was from plastic. The bag stretched out a bit and its prints quickly faded away. It also retained some moisture from my wet clothes, which, I think, means that there's really no plastic content in it. It felt good to use something which I knew would just decompose back to the soil after 180 days... This clearly reduced my plastic footprint, and if everyone would do the same, imagine how much it will impact the environment. (Thanks, EcoNest! Click here if you want to learn how you can reduce your plastic footprint too.)
Looks like plastic, but it's not! Thanks @econestph :)

Our current crisis on water gives us the right to rant all we want, but I hope we can spin something better out of it too. The problem already occurred, so what's left for us to do is to help solve it in our own way, and practice a more environmentally-friendly lifestyle to hopefully prevent further shortages in the future.

The Travel Archives

No comments:

Post a Comment