Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Warriors of the Rainbow

“There will come a time when the Earth grows sick, and when it does, a tribe will gather from all the cultures of the World who believe in deed and not in words. They will work to heal it…they will be known as the ‘Warriors of the Rainbow’”

For the last two weeks of November, I was pretty much hooked up in my work because our flagship Rainbow Warrior visited the Philippines for its Turn the Tide Ship Tour. This tour is also her last visit in the country because she's scheduled to be decommissioned next year.

The campaign is focused on the issue of climate change, calling for action to the greatest threat to humankind and to offer solutions to this problem by switching to renewable energy. (50% Renewable Energy by 2020)

The first port call was General Santos City wherein a proposed coal power plant is to be built in a small town of Maasim. We held a solidarity activity there with the community and was overwhelmed on how thankful the folks are because of our visit. It was just a one-day activity but for me it was the most fulfilling moment in this whole ship tour.

After four days of sailing from Gensan, Rainbow Warrior arrived safe and sound in Manila last week, Saturday morning. Unfortunately, it was not able to dock near Harbor Square Manila but still the Warrior was visible.

The Manila leg is focused on the activities held in the BGY10 (Barangay Greenpeace Year 10) such as bike ride, fora, exhibits, demonstrations of renewable energy applications, environment workshops for children as well as adults. This 10th year anniversary of Greenpeace Southeast Asia also highlighted the "Turn The Tide" Concert featuring popular and independent bands and artists from the local music scene.

On Sunday, we held a two simultaneous event, Waste Audit in Manila Bay with GAIA (Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives) and Energy [R]evolution Bike Ride. It was very tiring to invite media for two events but all ends well :)

The final event of the tour is a solemn memorial for Crizel, the little girl who died on the Rainbow Warrior 10 years ago. She was afflicted with leukemia due to exposure from toxic wastes in a former US military base. Despite the dark clouds and slight rain, we were still able to finish the event in one hour. Francis and Beau led the solemn memorial for Crizel and some of the crew and volunteers like Hetty and Danny shared their stories about that first trip of the Warrior in the country. (Crizel)

It's quite a tour that's full of new insights, hardships and inspiration. I'm hoping to experience more kick ass and compelling activities for the coming year.

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