Press Release
June 7, 2018

Koko calls on Filipinos to rethink use of plastic

Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III asked Filipinos to consider reducing their use of plastic as the world observes World Oceans Day on Friday.

A 2015 Ocean Conservancy report said that more than half of the 8 million metric tons of plastic waste dumped into the oceans every year comes from countries: China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam.

"Our economy's strong performance has increased production and consumption. Unfortunately, it also increased the plastic waste we generate in the course of our daily activities. It's time we consider how we can use plastic in a less destructive way", said Pimentel.

The Senator said that there are estimates which project that by 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in the world's oceans.

Pimentel said, "It will be a disaster for everyone if we are to lose our fishing industry and the livelihood and sustenance it provides."

During his term as Senate President, Pimentel affirmed full legislative support from the Philippines for the global agenda to conserve and sustainably use the oceans during the February 13-14 meeting of the International Parliamentary Union (IPU) on the 2030 Agenda Sustainable Development Goal 14, which focuses on the oceans, seas and marine resources.

Pimentel recommended doing away with single-use plastic bags and suggested mandating that disposable plastics be biodegradable.

As Chairman of the Senate Committee on Trade, Commerce, and Entrepreneurship, Pimentel is considering legislation to limit the use of plastics in industry and trade.

Pimentel said, "I understand the convenience and economics of plastic use. However, we should never let short-term benefits doom us in the long term."

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