PATTAYA, Thailand – On February 7, 2023, Chem Perez, the organizer of “The Good News – PlanetCleanup,” a Filipino English teacher and Digital Marketer residing in Thailand for the past 12 years spoke to the Pattaya City Expats Club (PCEC) about his organization. His passion for protecting the environment and restoring humanity led him to establish this organization, which focuses on refuse cleanup by training volunteer leaders to initiate and execute cleanup projects in their local areas.
During his talk, Chem highlighted the organization’s goals and recounted its past and ongoing successes. He emphasized the need for action in response to the widespread littering issue, particularly evident in our beaches and other areas he had observed during his travels.
Chem’s personal journey underscores the importance of individual initiative and community engagement in addressing environmental challenges. By mobilizing volunteers and fostering grassroots leadership, “The Good News – PlanetCleanup” aims to make a tangible impact on waste management and environmental stewardship.
He explained that it’s indeed alarming how much plastic waste, particularly fishing gear, contributes to ocean pollution. Fishing nets and other fishing-related debris make up a 40% portion of marine plastic waste, posing serious threats to marine life and ecosystems.
Efforts to address this issue involve not only cleaning up existing waste but also implementing policies and practices to prevent further pollution. He offered some ways his organization was addressing the issues as well as actions we can all take in the effort to clean up our planet. Chem believes that education is a big part of the overall solution.
Currently they have volunteer leaders in 28 areas of the Philippines with each area having anywhere from 1 to 4+ cleanups in their area. Cleanups consists of the volunteer leaders recruiting locals interested in helping, selecting an area, scheduling a date, and then removing all the garbage from the area. Unfortunately, Chem admitted that the areas returned to their pre-cleanup state in a very short time, which is why education and recycling awareness is the organizations top priority.
It’s Chem’s hope that through his and other leaders’ efforts that we will all become more aware of this serious issue and want to be a part of the cleanup effort so that our children and future generations will have a clean planet to live on.
To view the video of his presentation on the PCEC’s YouTube Channel, visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xE9YVjnVys and here to view his post presentation interview https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLIKEppNwlU. To view his presentation slides, visit: https://pcec.club/Library-Links/.
After the presentation, MC Ren Lexander brought everyone up to date on upcoming events and called on George Wilson to conduct the Open Forum portion of the meeting where the audience can ask questions or make comments about Expat living in Thailand, especially Pattaya. To learn more about the PCEC, visit their website at https:/pcec.club.