MANILA, Sept. 7, 2012 —Despite having minimal buying power, young people, as it turns out, are one of the most effective advocates for green technologies.
“Change can only happen if we are able to generate a collective concern over the issues we face today. The youth of today can inspire people to be a part of the solution, rather than the problem,” Center for Clean and Renewable Energy Development (C-CRED) Director Catherine Maceda said in an interview.
Despite going relatively mainstream in other countries, green technologies like solar energy, biomass, or even more energy-efficient LED TV sets have yet to gain a foothold in the market and in the public consciousness.
Episcopal Commission on Youth Executive Secretary Fr. Conegundo Garganta said, concretely, young people can influence the people who have actual purchasing power, like their parents, their siblings and relatives to buy more energy-efficient and environment friendly appliances, for example.
At the recent “Watts Out!” TV Olympics last August 16 to 22, this is exactly what some 50 young advocacy volunteers did during the event, which aimed to demonstrate which 32-inch CCFL, LED-backlit and LCD TV models were the most energy-efficient.
Throughout the run of the event, volunteers, who were mostly students and youth leaders, made the rounds of the exhibits, explaining how making the switch to a ‘greener’ TV could actually lower one’s electric bill.
The youth volunteers’ involvement in the event is a forerunner of sorts for their more hands-on participation in the advocacy for cleaner technology.
Garganta explained that these young people who may not be able to buy their own TV sets today are set to be the consumers and patrons of green innovation tomorrow because of their early exposure to the advocacy.
“Watts out!” volunteers were mostly students and youth leaders from Adamson University, Ateneo’s Environmental Science Society, Boy Scouts of the Philippines, De La Salle University Engineering Department, DLSU-Physics Society, Don Bosco (Tondo and Mandaluyong), Far Eastern University, FEU-East Asia College, Girl Scouts of the Philippines, Miriam College, Ms. Earth Foundation Inc., Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Rizal Technological University, University of the East, University of the Philippines, World Youth Alliance, and Young Women Christian’s Association of the Philippines. [Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz]