• Iza Calzado and Mikee Cojuangco Advocates for Mother Earth

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    Earth Hour Steward Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski and WWF-Philippines National Ambassador Iza Calzado pledge their support for Earth Hour

    Earth Hour Steward Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski and WWF-Philippines National Ambassador Iza Calzado pledge their support for Earth Hour

    Environmental awareness knows no age, no gender, and no social status.

    This is what the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) stands for as it set to mark two important occasions this year: its 20th founding anniversary and the 10th anniversary of Earth Hour—its monumental activity that calls on humanity to switch off lights once a year for Mother Earth.

    In line with this, WWF-Philippines on Tuesday formally announced that this year’s Earth Hour is slated on March 19. Showing her support for the upcoming cause is no less than the group’s newest National Ambassador, Iza Calzado.

    In her first-ever public appearance as an ambassador for the foundation, actress and host Calzado admitted that she was first hesitant to join WWF. She told The Manila Times, “When they signed me up, I wasn’t sure, I told them I am not an environmentalist. Not yet, anyway!

    “But the thing is, I know that I can make a difference and I’ve been given an opportunity to do so. And together with WWF, I hope to inspire people, I hope to create change and I hope to somehow be a part of—I can’t say a revolution—the movement to make this world a better place,” Calzado further elaborated.

    When asked what will be her pledge for the environment now that she’s part of WWF, the actress sincerely answered, “My only pledge is that I will try to be a better citizen of the world and try to take better care of Mother Nature. I’m slowly thinking of ways on how I can make my household more eco-friendly. . . [with]small choices in life like choosing not to waste water.”

    WWF-Philippines led by its president and CEO Joel Palma and board chairman Gigi Montinola 3rd (first and second from right) announces that for 2016, Earth Hour is slated on March 19 with activites to be staged at the Quezon City Memorial Circle

    WWF-Philippines led by its president and CEO Joel Palma and board chairman Gigi Montinola 3rd (first and second from right) announces that for 2016, Earth Hour is slated on March 19 with activities to be staged at the Quezon City Memorial Circle

    The Manila Times also sat down with Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski who has been an “Earth Hour Steward” for four years already. For her environmental pledge this year, she revealed, “I think my pledge for 2016 is to be a little bit more conscious of the small acts that we can do at home and as a family. I think there’s always something new to discover and a new way of doing things. Maybe this year, I will try to do a little bit more natural with the things that we use at home.”

    Calzado and Cojuangco will be joining long-time WWF National Ambassadors Marc Nelson and Rovilson Fernandez, as well as other advocates and supporters in celebrating 2016’s Earth Hour at the Quezon City Memorial Circle (QCMC).

    Before, during and after the actual switching off lights from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Earth Hour Philippines and WWF-PH have lined up different activities.

    “We thought it but fitting to go back to the roots of Earth Hour. We want to show that things are possible,” noted lawyer Angela Consuelo Ibay, director of Earth Hour Philippines.

    One thing that Filipinos must watch out for is the Bambike. It can a power generator and light up a panel when used unceasingly. During the one-hour lights out, advocates will continuously pedal and pass the task from one to another to keep the place lighted.

    A solar power developer will also put up solar panels at the QCMC. The batteries powered by the solar panels will then be used to light up the venue at night.

    “We are excited. We are really trying to make it as low carbon as possible, to show that even as you switch off from the grid, you can actually switch on to using kinetic energy,” Ibay added.

    And to put an extra dose of entertainment value to the event, there will also be cultural performances and acoustic artists who will complement the quietness of the night.

    Finally, Ibay called on Filipinos to also mark Earth Hour in their own ways besides attending the festivities.

    “We also tell people that it’s not just coming to our event. If they want to celebrate Earth Hour in their own home, that’s better because it also lessens the carbon foot print,” Ibay concluded.

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