The Youth and Climate Change
In the text of the speech that he did not deliver at the UST Campus on Sunday, January 18, 2015, Pope Francis suggested three key areas where the Filipino youth can make a contribution to Philippine society. The second he mentioned was to show concern for the environment: “This is not only because this country, more than many others, is likely to be seriously affected by climate change. You are called to care for creation not only as responsible citizens but also as followers of Christ….” One concrete way in which the millions of school-going Filipino youth can contribute to a sustainable environment is to join in the advocacy for the schools in which they study to be part of what has been referred to as the “solar power bandwagon.” The pioneer in this move to solar power is the University of Asia and the Pacific in Pasig, Rizal that installed a photovoltaic power system in its Parking and Sports (PSB) Building which can generate up to 300 kilowatts of electricity, making it the first campus in the country to implement the use of solar energy. If this move snowballs among the hundreds of schools even in Metro Manila alone, the Department of Energy estimates that up to 270 MW of power could be generated, lowering power costs of the schools. Already, Manuel L. Quezon University, Mapua Institute of Technology and La Consolacion College-Manila, among others, are following the example of UA&P.