Nov 18, 2017
Visiting Ubay Green Park
Location: Ubay Green Park, Ubay (municipality), Bohol (province), Philippines
At the outset, I am a conservationist. I'm all for a green planet. I do coastal clean-ups and do my fair share of addressing the garbage issue. But I may not necessarily agree with methods employed by green advocates.
Ubay Green Park
After Sinandigan Boardwalk, I headed straight for the next attraction - Ubay Green Park. Ubay Green Park is a former landfill turned into an eco-park, re-purposing plastic as part of its decor and attraction.
The biggest challenge getting there on my bike was still the heat. It was noon and the sun was blistering. It wasn't easy getting to Ubay Green Park. It's tucked-in into Ubay's remote interior with only dirt roads leading to it. There were not enough signs. If not for my Maps.Me app on my smart phone, I wouldn't be able to get there.
Upon arrival, I began to see what they've done. Plastic containers were re-purposed to be used as gardening containers for plants, decor and accents. Old tires were painted over with cartoon images to make it child-appealing. The landfill itself is a tall mound, about 3 stories high where a dirt road leads to its peak - a brutal climb on a bike. The peak has a tall teepee-like center piece and reused old tires making for park benches. It also offers a nice view. At night, it's a lovers' lane.
I really appreciate the LGU's effort in highlighting the garbage issue - other municipalities would not bother. I like the way the old tires were made into park benches. I've seen pictures of wonderful tire-parks where innovative and creative ways to re-purpose tires were implemented. But somehow, I remain ambivalent about their means of addressing the small plastic. Creating a park with its colorful plastic decor instills a feel-good tap on the shoulder but I don't see any re-education or call-to-action to the end-user. These plastics as exposed to the elements deteriorate easily and disintegrate back into the environment. I would rather have them recycled at the outset and re-purpose them for something more pragmatic, like building blocks for much-needed houses.
I would also put the effort in educating people. My frustration in participating a coastal clean-up is knowing that I'm just on a vicious cycle - the trash throwers will continue throwing trash and coastal cleaners will continue to clean up their mess...and the process repeats itself with no end in sight. There is a compelling need to stem the dumping of garbage by educating and penalizing (and if need be) trash throwers.
For the householder (end-users like you and me), I would develop the focus of the park on 5 garbage issues in this particular order, with my own examples:
- reduce - I would bring my own container so I can refuse plastic or cups
- reuse - if I ever end up with plastic, I won't throw it away when I get home. I would keep reusing it until it falls apart - and then I recycle it
- repair - if something is broken, I won't be in a rush to have it replaced. I will see if it can be repaired. For my shoes, I have it glued, re-glued, stitched until it's no longer repairable before I throw it away
- repurpose - dismantling so that the useful parts are put into innovative uses, e.g. - for a broken umbrella, I would keep the cover for my yoga mat or beach mat and take the metal parts to make functional S-hooks
- recycle - finally, if it's beyond repair, after it has been reused and repurposed, only then would I discard it for recycling
I'm just thinking aloud. I'm not an expert. I just want to share my experience and insight.
Next stop: Exploring Cambugsay Healing Hills with Lars Jensen
Ubay, Bohol, Philippines
Ubay Travel Info / Tips
- Jewel's Nook is the only cafe in town - a/c, serving only espresso P50 but NO WIFI
- you can buy Bahalina (aged, decanted and alcoholic coconut sap) at the Public Market for P75/half gallon
- there are 2 stores serving good P10 sikwate (native chocolate drink) and P10 puto-maya at the Public Market...just ask around
- tricycle ride around the city is only P8/pax
- trisikad ride around the city is only P5/pax
- laundry is only P25/kilo, minimum of 3 kilos, for pick-up after 2 days
- Southern Buses at the Public Market leave Ubay for other parts of Bohol
- market day is Monday
- Ubay-ubay Festival is the town fiesta held every January 28-30
Ubay to Cebu City by boat (as of July 2017)
- M/V J&N Carrier - 10am Monday-Saturday, 12am Sunday
- M/V J&N Ferry - 10pm Sunday-Friday, no Saturday trip
Ubay to Leyte by boat (4-5 hours) (as of July 2017)
- Ubay to Bato
- M/V Lady of Smile (or Lady of Charity or Lady of Guadalupe) - 1pm daily
- MBCA Star Sirius (or Mama Mary or San Isidro 9) - 8:30am daily
- MBCA Neriboy Allen Rey (or Mama Mary Irvin or San Isidro 5 or San Isidro 6) - 10am daily
- Ubay to Hilongos - M/V Leopards Sea Runner or Leopards Adventurer 1, 9am daily
Ubay to Pitogo (Bohol) by boat (as of July 2017)
- MBCA Bobong B - 11am daily
- MBCA Bobong A - 4pm daily
Carlos P. Garcia Island
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