When you hear advertisements about Earth Day, you basically already know what the concept is all about. But what makes this advocacy more effective are the solid programs behind it. The more specific, the better.
So I was ecstatic when I heard about one of SM Supermalls program geared towards the environment launched last Earth Day 2013 at The Block in SM North EDSA mall – Grow A Million Trees.
If you’re a Filipino living in the Philippines with access to one of SM’s nationwide mall, almost certainly, you’ve carried an SM Eco Bag at least once in your life in the past few years. With local government ordinances following suit by banning plastic bags in grocery and department stores, or any consumer stores for that matter, it even became more persistent.
The brand has promised that proceeds from the sale of the eco bags will go to institutions that support the environment, planting trees, and so on. But there were really no clear set goals about all this; until the other day.
Finally, a goal was set, that is to be able to plant 1,000,000 million trees by 2018. With about a quarter a million since the efforts started, 5 years will be feat that will involve hard work, perseverance, and a lot help from you – the people.
Different departments and groups from SM Supermalls and affiliates pledged their own commitments with varied number of trees in the tens of thousands, perhaps depending on their group size. Those who graced the launch included DENR Asst. Secretary Marcial D. Amaro, Jr., SM Foundation’s AVP Ms. Cristie Angeles, Sustainability Manager of SM Supermalls Mr. Cuunjeng, affiliates from SM Land, SM Development, Costa De Hamilo, Inc., and Ace Hardware.
“From SM Supermarket, SM Hypermarket and Savemore Market alone, it was in 2009 when we launched our banner campaign we called the “Join the M.O.B. (MyOwnBag)“. The Join the MOB is part of the vision of the Sy family to intensify its commitment to the 3 Rs, Reduce Reuse, and Recycle,” shared Mr. Joey Mendoza, president of SM Supermarket.
The Join the MOB is a campaign where SM Food Group does not release free plastic bags to customers. The plastic bag it comes with a minimal fee. The amount paid by customer is donated to environmental projects.
If you’re curious about statistics, there are 13 million people today who regularly use SM Greenbags which would be equivalent to about 39 million plastic bags that would have been released.
Earth Day 2013
For this year’s Earth Day 2013 with a simultaneous Eco Fair across all SM Malls, it further highlights Eco friendly products and innovations by our mall tenants and cottage industries with local inventors.