Establishments cancel balloon drops after DENR stoppage order
MANILA, Philippines — Several establishments have followed the move by Okada Manila and have also canceled their respective balloon drops to welcome the new year, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) said.
The DENR which has been monitoring several establishments, have acted on complaints or reports about possible violations of environmental laws by issuing stoppage orders.
Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu on Monday lauded the decision of various establishments in the country, including Okada Manila, for dropping their “balloon drop or release” activities to highlight their New Year’s eve celebrations.
“It is, indeed, laudable on the part of the various establishments to voluntarily cancel their “balloon drop or release” activities in the name of environmental protection,” Cimatu said upon learning that Okada Manila has canceled its world record attempt for the largest number of balloons dropped which was initially scheduled for New Year’s eve.
The management of Okada Manila had earlier decided to scrap its attempt to break the world record for the largest balloon drop following a stoppage order by the DENR.
The Peninsula Manila also canceled its annual 15,000 balloon drop event for its New Year’s celebration, saying that it is not in line with its “Sustainable Luxury Vision 2020 philosophy.”
“[It] is also possible for the New Year’s celebrations to be environmentally-friendly as well as enjoyable which is why we will no longer be having our traditional balloon drop as it is not in keeping with our Sustainable Luxury Vision 2020 philosophy,” the Peninsula Manila said in a statement issued on Monday.
We at The Peninsula Manila have traditionally celebrated welcoming the New Year with a party, but oftentimes it’s all…ADVERTISEMENT
Mariano Garchitorena, the hotel’s public relations director, said that the management is looking at “environmentally-friendly alternatives” and until then they are looking to putting similar events on hold.
The Davao Bamboo Sanctuary and Ecological Park also canceled its outdoor balloon release event saying they will just be releasing 12 balloons inside their dome, with a “Happy New Year” sign.
Venue 88 in General Santos City also canceled its balloon drop event for New Year’s Eve.
Undersecretary Benny Antiporda of the DENR’s Solid Waste Management said that the environmental agency will continue to monitor the said establishments and make sure that they comply with the stoppage order.
“Even though these establishments signify their intent to cancel the balloon drop event and other related festivities that are potentially hazardous to the environment, the DENR will still continue to monitor them and make sure they are compliant,” Antiporda said. /muf
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