Press Release
June 6, 2015

Villar joins Church-led 'Family Coastal Clean-Up Day' at LPPCHEA

Sen. Cynthia Villar was guest of honor during the clean-up activity organized by the United Methodist Church at the Freedom Island along Coastal Road also known as the Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Eco-Tourism Area (LPPCHEA).

More than 200 volunteers from the lay organizations of the Philippines Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church and Save the Freedom Island Movement assembled for the liturgical activity dubbed as the "Family Clean-Up Day."

"We are very glad that our cause for the protection and preservation of LPPCHEA is gaining ground and attracting significant sectors of our society. The support of the Church is a needed boost to our campaign to protect this area from development threats," Villar said.

The activity was organized "to respond to the call of being a good steward in this time of desecration of God's image."

The Church lamented that nature, as God's gift is being ravaged by individuals and corporations and that air, soil, plants, animal life, resources, and minerals are abused in the name of profit.

Villar brought with her two dump trucks to help the clean-up activity, which was also held to mark the World Oceans Day (WOD). WOD is recognized by the United Nations and celebrated annually during June 8 as a day to take action to protect the oceans.

LPPCHEA is a 175-hectare critical habitat as declared by Presidential Proclamation Nos. 1412 and 1412-A. It is also one of the Wetlands of International Importance listed by the Ramsar Convention.

It boasts of a 36-hectare mangrove that is the nesting ground of fishes in Manila Bay. It is also a bird sanctuary for both migratory and endemic birds, including the endangered Philippine duck and Chinese egret.

"We are lucky we still have a natural haven like LPPCHEA despite the commercial developments. It is the only place of its kind in the urban setting so it is tagged as the 'last bastion' in Metro Manila," she added.

Five other areas are included in the Ramsar List, namely, the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park in Palawan; the Tubbataha Reefs National Marine Park in Sulu; the Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary; the Naujan Lake National Park in Oriental Mindoro; and the Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary in Cebu.

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