The Urban Ecosystem Research Division (UERD) of ERDB led and organized a bicycle tour within the vicinity of Los Baños, Laguna on April 22, 2018 to celebrate the National 2018 Earth Day with the theme “Green the Cities, Green the Oceans” focusing on reducing wastes from single-use plastics and ending plastic pollution. The activity was conducted in partnership with the local government of Los Baños (Barangay Batong Malake) and other stakeholders.

A total of 69 bikers from Los Baños and Calamba City bicycle groups including TROPAPEEPZ, Banayad Bikers, Redballs, Makiling Boys, Elbi Riders, ERDB, FPRDI, UPLB, LOBSET and other institutions joined the tour. The 5.7-km ride took off from the grounds of Los Baños Municipal Hall and ended at ERDB Office located in Forestry Campus at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB).

Shortly after, an Audio-Visual Presentation (AVP) was shown to the participants at the ERDB Auditorium and these included: a) Background on ERDB as shown on its 30th Anniversary presentation, b) ASEAN Urban Resilience to Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction Management Strategies, and c) Plastic Ocean published by the United Nations in 2017.

The presentations aimed to orient the participants on the past and current initiatives of ERDB and updates on the ASEAN cities’ resilience to climate change. The third topic presented was specifically chosen to highlight this year’s Earth Day global theme “End Plastic Pollution” and instigate on the participants’ minds the negative effects of plastic in our water and marine life. The bicycle tour likewise served as a reminder, an advocacy, and information campaign for the residents of Los Baños to reduce the use of plastic specifically the single-used ones and for lessening carbon footprints. Rowena C. Payuan and Juan B. Ebora, UERD