May 25, 2017, 1:08 pm
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1 Philippine Peso = 0.07381 UAE Dirham
1 Philippine Peso = 2.39851 Albanian Lek
1 Philippine Peso = 0.03597 Neth Antilles Guilder
1 Philippine Peso = 0.32504 Argentine Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 0.02683 Australian Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.03597 Aruba Florin
1 Philippine Peso = 0.04019 Barbados Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 1.61957 Bangladesh Taka
1 Philippine Peso = 0.03496 Bulgarian Lev
1 Philippine Peso = 0.00756 Bahraini Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 34.20217 Burundi Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0201 Bermuda Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.02784 Brunei Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.13867 Bolivian Boliviano
1 Philippine Peso = 0.06563 Brazilian Real
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0201 Bahamian Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 1.30125 Bhutan Ngultrum
1 Philippine Peso = 0.20751 Botswana Pula
1 Philippine Peso = 402.33121 Belarus Ruble
1 Philippine Peso = 0.04015 Belize Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0271 Canadian Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01953 Swiss Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 13.47267 Chilean Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 0.13847 Chinese Yuan
1 Philippine Peso = 58.35812 Colombian Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 11.51125 Costa Rica Colon
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0201 Cuban Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 1.96925 Cape Verde Escudo
1 Philippine Peso = 0.47339 Czech Koruna
1 Philippine Peso = 3.57074 Djibouti Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 0.13296 Danish Krone
1 Philippine Peso = 0.94574 Dominican Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 2.17205 Algerian Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.27938 Estonian Kroon
1 Philippine Peso = 0.36314 Egyptian Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.46021 Ethiopian Birr
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01786 Euro
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0421 Fiji Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01545 Falkland Islands Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01546 British Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.08669 Ghanaian Cedi
1 Philippine Peso = 0.90334 Gambian Dalasi
1 Philippine Peso = 181.20981 Guinea Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 0.14748 Guatemala Quetzal
1 Philippine Peso = 4.11013 Guyana Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.15644 Hong Kong Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.47082 Honduras Lempira
1 Philippine Peso = 0.13208 Croatian Kuna
1 Philippine Peso = 1.33903 Haiti Gourde
1 Philippine Peso = 5.50744 Hungarian Forint
1 Philippine Peso = 267.16239 Indonesian Rupiah
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0719 Israeli Shekel
1 Philippine Peso = 1.29803 Indian Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 23.73392 Iraqi Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 651.98958 Iran Rial
1 Philippine Peso = 2.0008 Iceland Krona
1 Philippine Peso = 2.60008 Jamaican Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01424 Jordanian Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 2.23286 Japanese Yen
1 Philippine Peso = 2.07094 Kenyan Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 1.36441 Kyrgyzstan Som
1 Philippine Peso = 81.2902 Cambodia Riel
1 Philippine Peso = 9.04341 Comoros Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 18.08682 North Korean Won
1 Philippine Peso = 22.44775 Korean Won
1 Philippine Peso = 0.00609 Kuwaiti Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01648 Cayman Islands Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 6.24598 Kazakhstan Tenge
1 Philippine Peso = 164.32878 Lao Kip
1 Philippine Peso = 30.27532 Lebanese Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 3.06873 Sri Lanka Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 1.84887 Liberian Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.26588 Lesotho Loti
1 Philippine Peso = 0.06127 Lithuanian Lita
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01247 Latvian Lat
1 Philippine Peso = 0.02803 Libyan Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.19542 Moroccan Dirham
1 Philippine Peso = 0.36586 Moldovan Leu
1 Philippine Peso = 1.09586 Macedonian Denar
1 Philippine Peso = 27.49196 Myanmar Kyat
1 Philippine Peso = 48.43248 Mongolian Tugrik
1 Philippine Peso = 0.16115 Macau Pataca
1 Philippine Peso = 7.19453 Mauritania Ougulya
1 Philippine Peso = 0.69695 Mauritius Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 0.3115 Maldives Rufiyaa
1 Philippine Peso = 14.4168 Malawi Kwacha
1 Philippine Peso = 0.37541 Mexican Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 0.08626 Malaysian Ringgit
1 Philippine Peso = 0.26598 Namibian Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 6.33039 Nigerian Naira
1 Philippine Peso = 0.59385 Nicaragua Cordoba
1 Philippine Peso = 0.16751 Norwegian Krone
1 Philippine Peso = 2.07195 Nepalese Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 0.02866 New Zealand Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.00773 Omani Rial
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0201 Panama Balboa
1 Philippine Peso = 0.06572 Peruvian Nuevo Sol
1 Philippine Peso = 0.06587 Papua New Guinea Kina
1 Philippine Peso = 1 Philippine Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 2.10309 Pakistani Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07495 Polish Zloty
1 Philippine Peso = 111.9996 Paraguayan Guarani
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07317 Qatar Rial
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0813 Romanian New Leu
1 Philippine Peso = 1.13651 Russian Rouble
1 Philippine Peso = 16.46403 Rwanda Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 0.07535 Saudi Arabian Riyal
1 Philippine Peso = 0.15881 Solomon Islands Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.26967 Seychelles Rupee
1 Philippine Peso = 0.13384 Sudanese Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.17452 Swedish Krona
1 Philippine Peso = 0.02785 Singapore Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.01546 St Helena Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.44626 Slovak Koruna
1 Philippine Peso = 149.31673 Sierra Leone Leone
1 Philippine Peso = 11.03296 Somali Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 437.5784 Sao Tome Dobra
1 Philippine Peso = 0.17528 El Salvador Colon
1 Philippine Peso = 10.34928 Syrian Pound
1 Philippine Peso = 0.26605 Swaziland Lilageni
1 Philippine Peso = 0.69031 Thai Baht
1 Philippine Peso = 0.04822 Tunisian Dinar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.04643 Tongan paʻanga
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0716 Turkish Lira
1 Philippine Peso = 0.13463 Trinidad Tobago Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.60344 Taiwan Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 44.81511 Tanzanian Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 0.52904 Ukraine Hryvnia
1 Philippine Peso = 72.62862 Ugandan Shilling
1 Philippine Peso = 0.0201 United States Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 0.56692 Uruguayan New Peso
1 Philippine Peso = 76.36656 Uzbekistan Sum
1 Philippine Peso = 0.20045 Venezuelan Bolivar
1 Philippine Peso = 454.6624 Vietnam Dong
1 Philippine Peso = 2.15394 Vanuatu Vatu
1 Philippine Peso = 0.05199 Samoa Tala
1 Philippine Peso = 11.70539 CFA Franc (BEAC)
1 Philippine Peso = 0.05426 East Caribbean Dollar
1 Philippine Peso = 11.75181 CFA Franc (BCEAO)
1 Philippine Peso = 2.11917 Pacific Franc
1 Philippine Peso = 5.02271 Yemen Riyal
1 Philippine Peso = 0.2661 South African Rand
1 Philippine Peso = 104.2906 Zambian Kwacha
1 Philippine Peso = 7.27291 Zimbabwe dollar

Getting personal

AS mentioned in my previous column, today’s generation of Filipinos who are in their 15s-to early 20s are no longer newspaper readers and instead, almost to a man, users of digital media which has become their main (if not sole) source of information.

The good thing is they do not contribute to the deforestation that is necessary to produce paper on which to print the dailies, nor do they end up with soiled fingers from the ink used in the printing.

The bad thing is it is harder to discern from online sources which is real news and which is fake news, and it is also much harder to go after purveyors of fake news online than it is to sue a newspaper for malicious reporting. 

Now which of the two poses a bigger problem to society?

Feeling Millennial, I also take to online sources of information to spice up my day. While I make it a point to at least scan the headlines of the printed form of newspapers, and hold up one or two front pages when a headline grabs me, I do make it a point to go to the websites of a number of news outlets both local and foreign to give me my daily dose of my view on the world. And then of course there is Facebook and the updates you can get on your timeline. Some friends are great sources of links to news reports that are truly worth following, while others are great sources of personal advocacies that are interesting to track.

One of the latter are the FB posts of former DENR secretary Gina Lopez, who seems even more productive and far more passionate now in posts about her advocacy. After her rejection by the Commission on Appointments she has continued to pepper Facebook with videoclips of herself on trips to areas where irresponsible mining has created issues. These clips include testimonies from people who claim to be directly affected, men women and children even, testimonies about how their lives are now endangered. And then Madam Gina comes along, fist waving and challenging the “greedy miners” to “prove it”…I think her most passionate – and personal -- challenges of late have been directed at Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez who Gina Lopez has seen as her Public Enemy Number One
(Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea is Number Two!) and a major reason why she failed to get the confirmation she so earnestly desired.

She has linked Dominguez to the Tampakan copper and gold project in South Cotabato, currently suspended, which anti-mining advocates claim will damage a considerable area of watershed in four towns in four provinces covered by the 10,000 hectare copper field.

When she was DENR secretary, Lopez refused to give the project a green light saying she was subjecting it to the “law of the common good”. As she is often wont to do, Madam takes mining in Tampakan at its worst.

The Madam’s attacks on Dominguez gave me pause; is she right in getting personal? I fear that the Madam is risking a lot by doing so.

She is attacking him as if he still has a direct and pecuniary interest in mining, which opens her up to attacks as if she has a direct and pecuniary interest in the Lopez-owned businesses. And frankly, at this point, what should worry Madam Gina is not any interest she may have in the renewable energy businesses of her family, but in ABS-CBN.

Yes, ABS-CBN.

You see, one way to become a real advocate for the environment is to pick up from where the current Pope, Pope Francis, has left off. And that is his encyclical, Laudato Si which he released about two years ago. It was an encyclical that many environmentalists – especially those focused on mining -- were waiting for with bated breath; but it was noticeable to me that when it was issued their reactions were muted.

The reason is obvious when you read the document, which has 246 numbered paragraphs. In those 246 numbered paragraphs , the Pope criticized mining only once. On paragraph 51 I think it was, when His Holiness lamented the use of mercury in gold mining that seeps into the water table and poisons it. Mercury is often used in small scale, usually illegal mining, the artisanal kind that many environmentalists hail as the better alternative to large scale!

So the Papal document that so many people hoped to be a condemnation of the degradation of the earth’s environment due to mining turned out to be not that.

Instead, the Pope mentions consumerism more than 30 times, lamenting it as “wasteful” or “shameful”, the type of attitude that encourages the purchase of items that people don’t really need for wants that are artificially created. According to Laudato Si, it is this consumerist mindset that is at the root of the pollution that is in turn speeding up Climate Change in the world today. And how are these wants created? By the combined forces of the market and media! 

Interestingly, in 2015, the year before the national elections, ABS CBN reported advertising revenues of P21 Billion. No mining firm reported revenues of that size. I can only wonder how much larger the network’s advertising revenues were last year!

As for damage caused? Let’s take both Tampakan and ABS-CBN at their worst.

If we think of the Tampakan project in the worst possible light, the Tampakan project covers 10,000 hectares and could impact the lives of the people in the four towns in that area. Let’s say each town had 30,000 residents; that’s 120,000 people. Even if we double the impact, that’s 240,000 people directly affected by Tampakan, in a worst-case scenario, covering an area that is 10,000 hectares in size -- or even say 20,000 -- in a country of 100 million people spread out over 30 Million hectares.

In contrast: if we think of ABS-CBN in the worst possible light, ask yourself: how many lives are directly affected by ABS-CBN’s consumerist-oriented programming? And daily? Millions. Nationwide at that. Millions nationwide who everyday see the TV commercials that bring billions to the network, commercials which in turn feed the mindset of people to buy things they don’t need for wants that are artificially created. 

The resulting damage to the environment can’t compare. 

Lesson learned: people living in glass houses should be very careful about getting personal. Because if the Madam were to be true to her advocacy maybe she should be stoning the House of Lopez first, and with Papal blessings!
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