watering garden

Smart Strategies for Homeowners to Conserve Water and Save the Planet

In an era where environmental consciousness is paramount, conserving water has become a crucial aspect of responsible homeownership. With climate change looming and water scarcity becoming a pressing issue in many parts of the world, it’s imperative for homeowners to take proactive steps to reduce their water consumption. Not only does this contribute to the global effort of conserving a finite resource, but it also leads to lower utility bills, making it a win-win situation. Here are some smart strategies for homeowners to save water and make a positive impact on the environment.

1. Fix Leaks Promptly:

One of the most common sources of water wastage in households is leaks. A dripping faucet or a running toilet might seem insignificant, but they can waste hundreds of gallons of water over time. Regularly inspect your plumbing fixtures and promptly repair any leaks to prevent unnecessary water loss.

2. Upgrade to Water-Efficient Appliances:

Older appliances like washing machines and dishwashers tend to use more water than their modern, energy-efficient counterparts. When it’s time to replace these appliances, opt for WaterSense labeled products, which meet high-efficiency standards and use significantly less water without compromising performance.

3. Install Low-Flow Fixtures:

Low-flow faucets and showerheads are designed to reduce water flow while maintaining adequate pressure. By installing these fixtures, homeowners can save gallons of water every day without sacrificing their bathing or cleaning experience. These fixtures are easy to install and are relatively inexpensive, making them a practical choice for any home.

4. Collect Rainwater:

Harvesting rainwater is an eco-friendly way to water your garden and plants. Install a rain barrel or two in your yard to collect rainwater from your roof. This harvested water can be used for watering plants, gardens, and even for washing outdoor surfaces. It’s a sustainable practice that reduces the demand on municipal water supplies.

5. Landscape Wisely:

Choose native plants for your garden that require less water to thrive in your local climate. Implementing mulching techniques around plants and trees can help retain soil moisture, reducing the need for frequent watering. Group plants with similar water needs together so that irrigation systems can be tailored more efficiently.

6. Practice Responsible Lawn Care:

Lawns demand significant amounts of water to stay green. Consider reducing the size of your lawn or replacing it with drought-resistant grass species. Adjust your lawn mower to a higher setting to encourage deeper root growth, which can make your grass more resistant to drought.

7. Time Your Watering:

Water your garden and plants during the early morning or late evening when the temperatures are cooler. This reduces evaporation, ensuring that the water is absorbed by the soil and plant roots efficiently. Avoid watering on windy days, as wind can further accelerate evaporation.

8. Educate Your Household:

Foster a culture of water conservation within your household. Teach family members, especially children, about the importance of saving water and involve them in the process. Encourage everyone to be mindful of their water usage habits, such as turning off the tap while brushing teeth or taking shorter showers.

9. Monitor Your Water Usage:

Keep track of your water bills and monitor your usage patterns. Sudden spikes in water consumption could indicate leaks or inefficient water use. By staying vigilant, you can identify issues promptly and address them before they lead to significant wastage.

10. Invest in Smart Technology:

Consider installing smart irrigation systems that use weather data to optimize watering schedules. These systems can automatically adjust the watering duration and frequency based on real-time weather conditions, ensuring that your plants receive just the right amount of water they need.

By implementing these strategies, homeowners can play a significant role in conserving water and contributing to a sustainable future. Every drop saved not only preserves a precious resource but also helps in mitigating the effects of water scarcity on a global scale. Embracing water-saving practices today ensures a greener, more sustainable tomorrow for generations to come.

residential solar panels

Save Energy, Save the Planet

In the face of escalating climate change concerns, it has become increasingly imperative for individuals to proactively address their energy consumption patterns. The consequences of climate change are not distant possibilities anymore; they are our current reality. Rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and shifting climate patterns are clear indicators that immediate action is necessary. Fortunately, there are myriad simple yet impactful steps that every household can take to mitigate their energy usage, thereby playing a vital role in curbing the effects of climate change.

One of the most effective strategies to save energy is by transitioning to energy-efficient appliances. Older appliances tend to be energy hogs, consuming electricity at rates far beyond what modern, energy-efficient counterparts demand. By replacing these outdated devices with newer models designed with energy conservation in mind, individuals can substantially slash their energy consumption. The importance of seeking out appliances certified by Energy Star cannot be overstated. Energy Star certification serves as a guarantee that the appliance adheres to stringent energy efficiency standards. This means not only are you saving on your energy bills, but you are also significantly decreasing your carbon footprint.

Beyond updating appliances, a critical aspect of reducing energy consumption lies in conscious electricity usage. Simple habits like turning off lights and electronic devices when not in use, capitalizing on natural light during the day, and unplugging appliances can make a notable difference. Often, electricity continues to be drawn by appliances even when they are turned off, a phenomenon known as phantom power usage. By unplugging devices or using power strips, individuals can completely cut off the power supply when appliances are not in use, curbing this unnecessary energy drain. Moreover, making the switch from traditional incandescent bulbs to energy-efficient LED light bulbs is an easy yet impactful step. LED bulbs consume significantly less energy, emit less heat, and last much longer than their incandescent counterparts. Over time, this small switch not only saves energy but also substantially reduces the frequency of bulb replacements, thus lowering waste and contributing to a greener environment.

In the pursuit of sustainable energy, the utilization of renewable energy sources emerges as a pivotal solution. Homeowners can harness the power of the sun by installing solar panels on their rooftops. Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity, providing a clean and renewable energy source. Beyond solar power, wind energy offers another viable option. Small wind turbines can be installed in suitable locations to capture wind energy and convert it into electricity, reducing reliance on fossil fuels. Additionally, for homes located near water bodies, investing in small-scale hydroelectric systems can harness the energy from flowing water. These systems generate electricity without producing greenhouse gases, thus significantly mitigating the environmental impact. By adopting renewable energy sources, individuals not only contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions but also pave the way for a more sustainable energy future.

Apart from individual households, communities and businesses can also play a pivotal role in the transition to sustainable energy practices. Community solar initiatives allow multiple households or businesses to share the benefits of a solar energy system, even if they cannot install solar panels on their own properties. These shared solar projects promote community engagement and enable a larger segment of the population to access clean energy. Businesses, too, can embrace renewable energy solutions by installing solar panels on their rooftops, investing in wind energy projects, or procuring energy from renewable sources. Corporate commitment to renewable energy not only reduces the carbon footprint but also sets an example for customers and other businesses, encouraging a wider adoption of sustainable energy practices.

In conclusion, the battle against climate change is being fought on multiple fronts, and individual action is a cornerstone of this collective effort. By adopting energy-efficient appliances, being mindful of electricity usage, and embracing renewable energy sources, individuals can significantly reduce their energy consumption and contribute to the global fight against climate change. These seemingly small steps, when taken collectively, can lead to substantial reductions in carbon emissions and pave the way for a more sustainable and environmentally friendly future. Every action matters, and by making conscious choices, we can create a positive impact on our planet, ensuring a better tomorrow for generations to come. So, let us stand united in our commitment to energy conservation and renewable energy adoption, and together, we can make a significant difference in the fight against climate change.

Climate change efforts in the Philippines


The Philippines is one of the countries most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The country is located in the Pacific Ring of Fire, which makes it prone to natural disasters such as typhoons and earthquakes. Additionally, the Philippines is heavily dependent on agriculture, which is highly susceptible to the effects of extreme weather events. As a result, addressing climate change has become a top priority for the government and civil society organizations in the country.

Current Initiatives

Climate efforts in the Philippines are gaining momentum with several current initiatives aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, adapting to climate change impacts, and engaging communities in climate action. Here are some of the key initiatives being implemented in the country:

2.1 Renewable Energy:

The Philippine government has set a target of generating 30% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030. To achieve this goal, they have implemented policies such as feed-in tariffs for solar and wind power, net metering for rooftop solar systems, and the establishment of the Renewable Energy Management Office (REMO) to oversee the implementation of renewable energy projects. As a result, the share of renewable energy in the country’s electricity mix has been increasing steadily.

2.2 Carbon Footprint Reduction:

The government has also launched programs aimed at reducing carbon emissions from various sectors such as transportation, industry, and agriculture. For example, the “Eco-Driving” program encourages drivers to adopt eco-friendly driving practices, while the “Green Fleet” program promotes the use of hybrid or electric vehicles among public utility vehicles. Additionally, the government has established a nationwide carbon tax to discourage high-carbon activities.

2.3 Adaptation Strategies:

The Philippines is one of the countries most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, such as sea level rise, typhoons, and droughts. Therefore, the government has developed adaptation strategies to help communities prepare for and respond to these impacts. For instance, the “Community-Based Climate Change Management” program provides training and resources to local governments and communities on how to develop and implement their own climate change adaptation plans.

2.4 Community Engagement:

The Philippine government recognizes the importance of involving communities in climate action. Several initiatives have been launched to empower communities to take charge of their own climate resilience, such as the “Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty” program which provides training and support to farmers and fishermen to adopt sustainable practices. Additionally, the “Climate Change Information System” provides real-time data on weather patterns and climate change impacts to help communities make informed decisions.


The Philippines faces several challenges in its efforts to combat climate change. One of the biggest obstacles is the lack of political willpower at the national level. Despite the urgency of the situation, there is often a reluctance to take bold action on climate change. Additionally, the country struggles with limited financial resources, which hinders the implementation of many climate initiatives. The Philippines also lacks the technological capacity to fully harness renewable energy sources and reduce carbon emissions. Finally, public awareness about climate change remains low, which makes it difficult to build a strong grassroots movement for action.

Success Stories

The Philippines has made significant progress in its climate change efforts, with several successful initiatives that have shown positive results. Here are some of these success stories:

1. Solar Power Installations:

The government has implemented large-scale solar power installations across the country, which has led to a reduction in carbon emissions and an increase in renewable energy capacity. This has not only helped in reducing the country’s dependence on fossil fuels but has also provided electricity to remote areas that were previously without access.

2. Mangrove Restoration Projects:

The Philippines is home to one of the largest mangrove forests in the world, and these forests play a crucial role in protecting the coastlines from storm surges and sea level rise. The government has launched various restoration projects to restore degraded mangrove areas, which has not only improved the ecosystem but has also contributed to carbon sequestration.

3. Climate Change Education Programs:

The government has implemented programs to educate the public about the impacts of climate change and the importance of taking action to address it. These programs have reached millions of Filipinos and have helped raise awareness about the issue.

These success stories demonstrate the commitment of the Philippine government and its people to addressing climate change and adapting to its impacts. They serve as inspiration for other countries to follow suit and take similar actions towards a sustainable future.

Future Plans

The Philippines has set ambitious goals for its future climate actions. One of these goals is to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. This will require significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions across all sectors of the economy. To reach this target, the government plans to increase the share of renewable energy in the power mix from the current level of around 25% to 30% by 2030. Additionally, there are plans to improve energy efficiency and promote sustainable transportation. The government also intends to strengthen its carbon pricing mechanism to encourage businesses to reduce their carbon footprint. Furthermore, the Philippines aims to enhance its forest cover and restore degraded lands to absorb more carbon dioxide and protect the country against the impacts of climate change. Finally, the government plans to engage with international partners to access new technologies and financing options for climate action.


The Philippines has made significant strides in addressing climate change through various initiatives and efforts. While there are still challenges to overcome, such as political willpower, financial resources, technological capacity, and public awareness, there have been success stories in areas like solar power installations, mangrove restoration projects, and climate change education programs. Moving forward, the country plans to set a net zero emissions target, partner with international organizations, and involve the private sector in their efforts. It is essential to continue supporting and collaborating with the Philippines in its journey towards a sustainable future.

green sustainability philippines

Philippines, the Paris Agreement and Climate Change

The Paris Agreement on climate change is a legal and binding treaty, and it has been adopted by 196 nations. It was adopted at the COP 21 conference in Paris, and started enforcement in November 2016.

The main objective of the Paris Agreement is its long-term goal to hold the global temperature average to “well below 2°C above preindustrial levels,” though 1.5°C above preindustrial levels is highly sought. Though what is considered “pre-industrial” is also debated, though many scientists use the 1850-1900 timeline as a baseline.

global temp avg pre-industrial levels to current

To achieve this long term target, governments around the world are aiming to reach global peaking of greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible. The Paris Agreement is a significant milestone for addressing climate change as the Agreement is bringing countries from around the world to come to agree to a process of reducing emissions, working towards sustainable energies and processes that have less detrimental effects on our environment.

How is the Paris Agreement structured?

The Paris Agreement, adopted on December 12, 2015, and under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), aims to establish global commitments. This Agreement is designed to ensure that these commitments will be implemented, monitored and enforced. Although much work remains to be done to find ways to ensure that the commitments of parties are effectively implemented and enforced.

Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs)

Each country needs to establish a Nationally Determined Contribution, or an action plan to cut emissions and address climate factors and update it every five years. Even though the United Nations Global Climate Pact says nations should focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, many developing countries will continue to produce more in 2022 unless they increase their national commitments. The large gap between emissions required to be cut, and emissions planned to be cut are not significant enough, spurring the the Glasgow Climate Pact in November 2021 which asked countries to revisit their goals outlines in their NDC.

The round of climate talks in Durban, South Africa, have taken up a host of issues, including the emissions reductions that each country has promised to make, as well as the measures each country will take to help developing nations deal with the problems they face from global warming.

Long-Term Goals

So as to better frame the long-term goals, the Paris climate accord calls on countries to write and submit by 2020 a long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategy (LT-LEDS).

LT-LEDS do not act as the mandatory goals and long-term direction for what should be done over the next 5-10 years. Nevertheless, they provide the context for goals and direction in future development, providing a vision and focus for future directions, especially long-term planning.

It is estimated, that by 2030, the Philippines intends to reduce emissions by around 30 to 70%. The reduction program is implemented by mitigating from sectors of economy, including energy use, agriculture, industry, and transport, and mitigating through the development, transfer and adoption of available low-carbon technologies.

International Support

The Paris Agreement creates frameworks that provide financial, technical, and capacity building supports in countries that need it.


The Paris Agreement reaffirms in all parts of the world that developed countries have a higher obligation to help less developed countries to deal with climate change. The Paris Agreement also reaffirms the central role of developed countries in the reduction of GHG pollution and in financing the mitigation and adaptation. In line with that both, developed and developing countries must make financing accessible for developing countries.

In October 2015, the World Bank provided a grant of US$410,000 (about 19 million pesos) from the Carbon Partnership Facility to LANDBANK. The grant will help build its capacity to implement Clean Development Mechanisms (CDM) in the Philippines.

Carbon Credits Markets allows industrialized countries and companies to fulfill part of greenhouse gas reduction commitments by buying carbon credits in developing countries, like the Philippines, who plan to plant trees and do other clean-and-green projects. The Philippines recently re-established a previous program created under former President Aquino to plant approximately 1.5 million hectares. 

While greenhouse gas emissions have remained relatively low in the Philippines, rising global temperatures will cause losses in the tens of billions.

The report, titled 2022 Fiscal Risks Statement, said in 2020 alone, damage from storms resulted in losses of $1.49 billion.

A report claimed that sea-level rise was already occurring quickly in some parts of the Philippines, and that by the year 2100, it could expose all those living there to sea-level rise inundations.

In each of the last two years, the Public Works Department has consistently received the largest amount of funding for climate change projects and programs. Agriculture and Environment both received funding for climate change projects and programs, but were not as large as the Public Works


The goals of the Paris Agreement are to further enhance our ability to adapt and respond to the impacts from climate change, and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It does this by establishing a framework for technology development and transfer through the creation of a well-functioning Technology Mechanism.

USAID supports sustainable economic development in the Philippines by assisting on the following programs. Their program called Partnership Programs focus specifically on agriculture and business; and the Mindanao Development Program focuses specifically on rebuilding the Mindanao region. USAID also promotes resilience and helps create the environment to work in the Philippines.


Developing countries face serious challenges dealing with changing conditions in their economies. Due to a developing nation’s economy and relatively small number of citizens, these areas cannot afford the same level of technology as a developed country’s economy, nor a larger the larger population. Developed countries may be required to transfer technology to less technologically advanced countries to help them better cope with changing climates, or environmental, conditions.

American foreign companies are pushing for the importation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the Philippines. A recent white paper, sponsored by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), argues that coal accounted for 52.9 percent of carbon emissions in the Philippines in 2018, against 40.7 percent for oil and 6.4 percent for gas.

Natural gas reserves on the eastern island of Palawan are expected to be depleted by the end of this decade. In the wake of this, the local government faces a choice: import liquefied natural gas (LNG), or invests in renewable technologies.

co-emissions-per-capita Philippines data

How are we tracking progress?

Countries that signed the Paris Agreement will have to submit transparently on the steps taken to meet the goals of the agreement. However, they won’t have to report as regularly as they do after 2020.

The Philippines has taken new and unprecedented measures in implementing its Paris Agreement target to halt emissions growth, while reducing emissions by up to 35% below current policy projections in 2030.

The continuing COVID-19 situation has put a lot of pressure on the Philippine economy. However, the government’s draft energy plan provides an opportunity to expand the use of renewable energy in the country. The review of the plan will give the government an immediate chance to show the country a vision of sustainable development. We rate the country’s goal “2 deg C compatible” as ambitious, because the goal assumes significant cuts in emissions.

Meralco has included in its power purchase agreements, a “curtailment provision” that allows them to curtailing its coal-fired power plants during a pandemic caused lower demand. This development allows the utility to continue to deliver power even though it has to pass the higher cost of power on to customers by the higher generation rates.

The Philippines has released a new energy efficiency roadmap that requires energy savings equivalent to 24% by 2040. The Energy Efficiency Roadmap also requires the country to save energy equivalent to 24% by 2040.

The information collected through these indices will feed into the global stock take which will assess the overall performance towards the long-term climate goals.

Philippines’ Current Initiatives

The Philippines has seen an increase in emissions during the teen years. However, the Philippines has seen a drop-offs in the last couple of  years, although he pandemic may have played a part in that as consumption and travel were below average as people worked from home, and  facing economic uncertainty, were frugal about spending habits. In either case, this is still a step in the right direction. What remains to be seen is whether this trend can continue or not.

According to the Environmental Performance Index at Yale, the Philippines has seen sharp increases in Ozone exposure as well as Unsafe Conditions. Our ecosystem vitality is on the decline, with the species habitat index taking a significant steep decline. We have to do better. We must do better. If Odette has shown, than climate change can be devastating for the Philippines.

The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is the biggest health crisis that humanity has ever faced. The social and economic impacts are being multiplied by the additional challenge of the pandemic. The added challenge has brought a compounding of multiple daily crisis that puts people most in need of food, shelter and medical care ever-at risk. However, while some nations are rapidly reacting they have the opportunity to use lessons from prior crises to design a sustainable economic recovery. The short-term recovery must focus on jobs, economic activity and health. There should be investments that boost well-paying jobs, boost investment activity, increase the quality of life in the midst of health and social calamities, increase resilience through better preparedness.

Irrigation in the Philippines is becoming more vulnerable to water scarcity. According to the NC2, watershed forests make up 1.56 million hectares of land area (5% of the country). These forests act as the primary hydrologic function for the Philippines’ agricultural, industrial, and commercial sectors. The distribution of water from these forests varies greatly during the year based on seasonal fluctuations in rainfall. The country’s annual water availability per year is 1,900 cubic meters per person; it is the second lowest in the area of Southeast Asia and less than the global average. If the current trends continue, watershed forests could become scarce.

Climate change will affect food production directly. It will cause temperature and carbon dioxide to change and also precipitation, so that soil moisture and quality will be altered. Indirect effects are present due to changes in water and its availability, and in arability due to the loss of coastal regions and desertification. Further, crop changes due to these affects will cause shifts in optimal growing areas and viable areas. A lower-emissions pathway will require that shifts happen faster than under an increase in emissions pathway, thus affecting current food availability.

The Philippines are extremely prone to having different types of natural disasters take place. This has resulted in over 70,000 deaths in just 20 years. The risk has become so high that it has been identified as a potential global concern. If Odette was an indicator, similar disasters could become mainstays, or even increase and intensify due to climate change.

By 2030, zero-carbon solutions may be competitive in sectors representing over 70% of greenhouse gas emissions.