Jakarta. Zero Waste Alliance Indonesia has called on the government to enforce its ban on waste imports, especially plastic waste and scrap, as it has a disproportionally negative affect on underprivileged people in the country. Despite the ban, Indonesia imported about 283,000 metric tons of plastic waste last year – more than double the amount imported five years earlier, according to Statistics Indonesia and the United Nations International Trade Statistics Database (UN Comtrade). "Principally, waste imports are prohibited in the 2008 and 2009 laws. However, there are complex definitions used to assess whether a commodity is waste or not. And if it is waste, whether it should be excluded from the import ban or not," Margaretha Quina, head of pollution control at the Indonesian Center for Environmental Law (ICEL), said on Tuesday. There is evidence that Indonesian companies misuse their import licenses to ship in waste from abroad. Ecoton, an … [Read more...] about Environmental Coalition Calls on Gov’t to Ban All Waste Imports
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Before he left for Bangkok to attend the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Leaders’ Summit last Friday, President Rodrigo Duterte vowed to raise before his fellow heads of states the June 9 “maritime accident” at Recto Bank as an urgent matter that must be addressed at their level. The “maritime accident” involved 22 of our fishermen on board the wooden-hulled F/B Gem-Ver that was anchored at Recto Bank was rammed by a much bigger Chinese fishing vessel last June 9. Instead of aiding their victims, the captain and crew of the steel-hulled Chinese fishing vessel sailed away. Thankfully, another fishing vessel from Vietnam was nearby and saved the day for the Filipino fishermen. The Recto Bank, well within the West Philippine Sea, is one of the islets located near the South China Sea where our country has overlapping territorial maritime claims with Beijing and other country claimants. Aside from the Philippines, our fellow ASEAN member states … [Read more...] about Wake up call for whom?
MANILA, Philippines — On the fourth floor of an offshore gaming firm somewhere in Paranaque City, a sprawling cafeteria serves a variety of Chinese food. At mealtime, hundreds of workers form long queues beside rows of chafing dishes filled with everything Chinese – fresh, leafy Chinese broccoli, beef stew, Chinese fried rice, crunchy, yellow noodles and a variety of dimsum and dumplings. A Chinese chef, aided by a team of Filipino cooks, is in charge of preparing the daily menu. The cafe serves all 7,000 Chinese employees of the online company who work on two 12-hour shifts to ensure the gaming entity’s 24/7 operations. Not far from the mess hall is a small booth selling milk tea, a popular beverage in Taiwan that has become a craze among Filipinos and Chinese alike. On the same floor is a convenience store catering exclusively to employees of the gaming company. Within the offices are bright red Chinese lanterns, corners with tables for tea and wall hangings bearing … [Read more...] about Special Report : Inside a Philippine offshore gaming company
The drivers of black cabs in London are required to immediately decide any routes in response to requests by passengers or traffic conditions. The test to become the driver of a black cab is so notorious it’s dubbed “The Knowledge”. It’s assumed to be the hardest test in the world since the prospective drivers must be able to memorize all routes in London city without using maps, navigation systems, or communication among drivers. It takes about 34 months for the average drivers to mentally map about 25,000 streets and addresses, including landmarks and short-cuts. It has been that way since 1856. Then all of a sudden, a new company called Uber launched a mobile application to disrupt public transportation services in major cities around the world. Uber provides an opportunity for anyone in possession of a car and a driver's license to be a “partner” and directly compete against taxis like the black cab without competitive regulations. To make … [Read more...] about ‘New Dark Age’ and the call for new digital literacy
One of the early promises of the ride-hailing era ushered in by Uber and Lyft was that the new entrants would complement public transit, reduce car ownership, and help alleviate urban congestion. But a new study on tech hub San Francisco published Wednesday in Science Advances has found the opposite may be in fact be true: far from reducing traffic, the companies were the biggest contributors to its growth as commuters ditched bus rides or walking for the convenience of their mobile-app summoned rides. The peer-reviewed paper, which adds to a growing body of research in the area, was co-authored by scientists at the University of Kentucky and a team at the San Francisco County Transportation Authority (SFCTA). It used 2010, when so-called transportation network companies (TNCs) didn't exist, as its baseline to compare travel times and roadway conditions to 2016, when they were firmly established. But the period also saw the city's population grow from 805,000 to 876,000, while some … [Read more...] about Ridesharing companies worsened congestion in San Francisco