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Give kids safe, ecofriendly noisemakers to welcome New Year, DENR chief says


04:01 PM December 27th, 2011

By: Kristine L. Alave, December 27th, 2011 04:01 PM

INQUIRER file photo

MANILA, Philippines – Environment Secretary Ramon Paje has sought the help of parents and grandparents to prevent children from playing with firecrackers in the forthcoming New Year’s celebration.

Firecrackers not only cause injuries, they also further pollute Metro Manila’s air.

“Air pollution is a health hazard. Our Health department has been very vocal about it that it particularly impact on our children and senior citizens because of their fragile health condition. This is the reason why I am calling on parents and grandparents for their support because in our culture, we always accede to the wisdom and “pakiusap” (request) of our parents and grandparents,” Paje said.

Paje reiterated his call on the public to use environment-friendly noisemakers in their New Year revelry.

“If we need to go back to how our grandparents welcome the New Year, why not,” Paje stressed.

Among the traditional yet environment-friendly merry-making activities of yesteryears that Paje suggested include the banging of “batya” or “planggana” (metal washtub), dragging empty tin cans behind a bicycle while riding around the neighborhood, blowing a “torotot” (horn), sounding of police sirens as they go around checking on the neighborhood, ringing of church bells, etc.

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