Ex-environment secretary eyes ‘love’ for environment to eradicate drug problem

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Photo by Vladlynn Nona Maryse L. Tadeo

FORMER environment secretary Regina “Gina” Lopez on Wednesday called on Thomasians to “have a heart” and take care of the environment to help eradicate the country’s drug problem.

Lopez, who was rejected by the Commission on Appointments as environment secretary last ‪May 3‬, said President Rodrigo Duterte’s “strong arm approach” was not enough to protect the Filipinos and their environment.

“There are other things that we can do for the drug problems. If you change the surroundings where people live [in], their heart[s] will change. They will feel better,” Lopez said in an environmental law seminar held at the Albertus Magnus auditorium last Nov. 8.

“Love means taking care of what God has given us. Whatever career you are pursuing, you have to make sure that [our] resources are protected,” she added.

Lopez said loving others and being concerned of others’ environmental sufferings would bring the Philippines to the “bright future that it deserves.”

“We can get our country out of poverty if we take care of [the] resources that we have,” she said.

Lopez took a swipe at mining anew, saying it remained the main cause of environmental problems despite its contributions to the economy.

“[It] kills the rivers [and] the streams [while] making money. It’s not good at all,” she said.

Lopez said economic growth is not based on love, and is not going to result in social justice especially if the people do not benefit from the resources of the country.

“It’s not the money that makes the difference in this country,” she said.

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