Bishop Gerardo Alminaza of the Diocese of San Carlos in Negros Occidental appealed to government leaders and businessmen to protect the environment as he was recognized as among the champions of environmental causes by The Climate Reality Project.
“I make a passionate plea to the Christian conscience, kind heart and good will of our government leaders, politicians running for public office, big land owners and business people to put our planet and people first before profit,” the bishop said in a statement on Wednesday.
Alminaza, who received the Luntiang Panagtitipon Award during the 2018 Leadership Awards held at the National Museum of Natural History in Manila Monday night, said these leaders should use their power, authority and wealth in investments that will safeguard and protect the people’s common home, which is the environment.
He said the award came at a time when there is a need for wider public support for the collective stand to keep the whole Negros Island green, environment friendly, and coal-free.
Alminaza also appealed to the voters to do all they can to make all candidates know that “it is our demand” to keep Negros Island coal-free and committed in respecting the vision and responsibility for the next generation.
In October, Alminaza released a position paper opposing the construction of a 300-megawatt coal-fired plant proposed by SMC Global Power Holdings Corp., the power arm of conglomerate San Miguel Corp., in San Carlos City.
The bishop, who said that coal causes pollution and harms human health, called on the local government of San Carlos and the provincial government of Negros Occidental to disapprove any proposal or application of SMC Global or any company at all for a coal-fired power plant project.
By: Erwin Nicavera