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65 Entries
Erin D. 
11/03/08

Comments:
Thank you for all of the information on your website.  I am a college student studying environmental geology and I was researching the Payatas Landfill as my final project.  So many concerns are being raised about environmental issues, yet no one really sees the direct effects of poor planning and lack of responsibility.  This story is heartbreaking and I thank you for sharing it so that people can really see what is going on in the rest of the world and now try to make a difference even in the little things.

Björn W: Dear Erin,

Thank you for your kind comments. Well, what else can I say than that I totally agree with you when it comes to the most discouraging effects of poor planning, lack of not only responsibility but also a real interest in doing something today - and even more importantly - for the next generation? Then combining that with short term greediness and the outlook is not that bright.

On the other hand, even small things showing practical and good results might be able to move the society in the "right" direction. And if not even small things are done - the big steps will for surely never happen...

T.P. SINGH Email
03/03/08

Comments:
Wonderful Work ! Very Inspiring !
I'm a construction engineer with a  25 years work experience. chucked up my job last year to do something socially useful.
Sustainability, Climate change and Green buildings are my interest areas.
Am feeling inspired to start a SWM experiment such as yours in my locality in DELHI.
Will SIDA consider a small project like this in India ?
What are the formalities / guidelines. 
BTW, I worked in Umea in 1982 for VOLVO Umeverken for 4 months as part of a student exchange traineship. Was great experience.

Björn W: Dear T.P. Singh,

Thank you for your kind comments. As you can see in this Guestbook the positive comments are just as many as the interest to start similar projects.

Regretfully from your interest point of view, there is a new policy for Sida since August 2007. Practically, the policy means that Sida will not support projects of this kind - at least not in India, Philippines, and most countries in Asia. I will not express my personal views on this policy and its consequences for Sweden's possibilities to play an active role in this part of the world when it comes to environmental protection - but I assume you understand what I think... :-(

Please refer to some updates in Conexor's homepage.

However, I am still trying to help interested people like you to get going with projects in various ways, but it is hard for me to provide more than basic advice since I am trying to survive as a consultant.

So, if you have some further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

nathaniel b. rempillo, M.D. Email
02/03/08

Comments:

I am impressed by the project of bgy pinagkaisahan and I would like to adopt their program in my barangay. I would like to inquire where will i get technical advise and support for this. Is there any financial institution willing to cover the cost of the program?

Björn W: Dear Nathaniel,

Thank you for your kind comments. The financial support from Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) to the project is since long terminated, but the project is still continuing on its own merits and local financing.

I would recommend that you contact Barangay Pinagkaisahan directly and inquire how to start of cooperation. I know they are very proud of their accomplishments and success, and they are normally very willing to share their experiences and knowledge.

Regarding financing for a similar project for your barangay, regretfully I have to inform you that Sida recently has decided to terminate all financial support to the Philippines.

However, there might very well be other international donors that could be interested in financing a project in your barangay. From my personal point of view, I can give you some advice, but unfortunately not much beyond that. I am running my own consultancy company and I have put large amount of time and direct financial subsidies into the Pinagkaisahan project to really show that a project of this kind can achieve impressive results and be sustainable - but like most other people I can not survive without some revenues ;-)

Please do not hesitate to keep in contact with me.

Miss Ailleen Mari Mendoza, RSW 
11/01/08

Comments:
I really congratulate you for the wonders you are doing, the effects and the changes that can take place.

I salute you for doing so, and continue to pray that your endeavor will continue.

And I also pray that we Pilipinos may have the courage to even separate the garbage that we are producing even in our own little way, we can have change the done so much.

Being a teacher, I know how it feels na kahit na minsan di ka sinusonud dahil mahirap mag-separate or mag-segregate.  But little by little I know they will understand and hope that they too will help clean up and make our world a better palce to life in, THAT WE ARE IN COMMUNION WITH OURSELVES, OTHERS AND MOTHER EARTH.

Björn W: Dear Ms Mendoza,

Thank you very much for your kind comments. As clearly demonstrated in this project, it is possible to achieve good results with relatively limited resources. However, the most important resource MUST be there:

THE WILL TO DO SOMETHING

Unfortunately I can not put more work and money into this kind of projects here in the Philippines since I need revenues to get my own salary - and I do not have private resources to run this as a charity (even if I would like to). In addition, Sida seems to have changed the policies regarding the Philippines so there will be no more financing from that source.

However, I would naturally be happy to put you in contact with Barangay Pinagkaisahan or other persons that might be useful for you to know.

I wish you GOOD LUCK with your important task as a teacher; the Philippines do need good and dedicated teachers...

henry r. ponce Email
13/12/07

Comments:
 dear sir;

 ako po pala ay isang bagong nanalong kapitan dito sa amin barangay ibaba del norte paete, laguna at ang basura nga rin ang number 1 problema ng aming munisipyo lalo po ngayon wala na pong pagtapunan ng basura dito sa aming bayan. Higit po sa lahat ang plastic na malaking pinsala rin sa atin na dapat makaisip ng paraan mabuti nga po ay naiisip po ang bio-gas na galing sa basura at siguro po kahit paano ay maso-solve ang problema sa basura. Sana po ay magawa rin dito ang tulad diyan sa payatas. More power po at sana lalong magtagumpay ito.

kapitan henry

Björn W: Dear Henry,

Thank you for your comments and explanations about your basura (solid waste) problems. I do appreciate that you, as a newly elected Barangay Captain, focus on this problem - among all the other problems I assume you are facing as well. Basura is probably one of the most important issues for you; without solving at least a part of the problems you will run the risk of facing even more complicated problems caused by the basura like flooding (due to clogged water ways from the plastics you are mentioning); epidemics (due to polluted stagnant water); vermin and rats (due to "food" in the streets); bad smell; etc, etc.

I would really like to help you and your Barangay in your most important work but I am sorry I have to blankly tell you that I am not running a charity. I spent a lot of unpaid time and my own money to make the project in Barangay Pinagkaisahan the successful Best Practice Example it has become.

Unfortunately it seems as if Sida has no more interest in supporting an enhancement of the Pinagkaisahan Best Practice into other areas and types of communities. I can not do anything about this...

The best thing I can do is to recommend you to contact Barangay Pinagkaisahan and ask for hands-on advice based on their experience. I am sure they like to share their experiences with you.

I am sorry again for not being able to help you and I DO WISH YOU GOOD LUCK with your very important work.

May A. Bergmann 
26/10/07

Comments:
Hello Bjorn,

I have been reading about your  cooperation /success with Barangay Pinagkaisahan on Solid Waste Management.  I would like to congratulate you and all the people involved in this noteworthy project. 

I am a past president of the Rotary Club of Mabalacat and one of our community based pojects right now is focused on SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT.  We are piloting a project
in this concern and had chosen  the AIRFORCE CITY in Clark Freeport Zone as beneficiary.  I would like to duplicate the success of what had happened in Barangay Pinagkaisahan , adopt the best practices  to make our pilot project a success.  We would like to use the project as a starting point to encourage/help  barangays in the municipality of Mabalacat Pampanga to go into solid waste management.

Would it be possible to visit your office and also the Barangay Eco Center and get materials we could use most especially in the area of information campaign with the residents.  We are donating a bioreactor  and had arranged for the marketing of the compost.
But I still believe that much could be learned from your experience with Barangay Pinagkaisahan.  After all, why reinvent the wheel?

Please let me know when it is convenient to visit your office and project site.

Best regards,

May A. Bergmann
09192041772
email- mbergmann2002@yahoo.com
          mayb_2002@hotmail.com

Björn W: Dear May,

Thank you for your kind comments. Naturally I will arrange for a discussion about and visit to the Project. There is surely a need to carry out as many good examples in line with the "Seeing Is Believing" principle as possible.

I will contact you as soon as I am back in Manila around mid November.

JUNZY 
08/10/07

Comments:

I JUST WANT TO ASK IF WHO WILL BENEFIT THE PROJECT?

Björn W: Dear Junzy,

The main idea behind the project is to demonstrate that it is possible to achieve good results given relatively limited resourses. I believe we have shown that :-)

Who will benefit from that? Well, it mainly depends if people are willing to learn from experience and good examples... This might sound like an issue for the Mayor or Barangay Captain - but a clean environment starts at home; be it basura (solid waste), air pollution or noise. I agree that the leaders need to get committed and REALLY act (not only talking about acting) but with pressure from you - i.e. voters in the next election - I think many of the leaders will actually move to the better.

Try and you will see that you will succeed...!!!

liza Email
24/08/07

Comments:

Hi Björn,

I really admire those who are working on projects that is non-profitable and at the same the time helping people live better in a healthier environment.  I have been to Sweden and have live there for four years. I like Swedish people especially in their values on taking care of the environment. I owe Sweden a lot when it comes to importance of loving the environment. I am continuing hoping for a healthier & cleaner Philippines through all the environmental projects. I would like to thank Sweden for financing, educating, developing & encouraging people to live a better life and for helping Philippines as a whole.

To you Björn, keep up the good work! I’m sure a lot of people are admiring you for all your effort & sacrifices for the projects. In behalf of the Filipinos, I would like to give you our sincerest appreciation and thanks for the inspiration you are giving us.

PS.  If you need Secretary or Assistant. Let me know. Thanks.

Liza

Björn W: Dear Liza,

Thank you for your encouraging comments. In fact, Sida has been supporting the project financially, but surely we are many who have put a lot of non-paid time and efforts into it. Unfortunately Sida seems to be closing its support to this kind of projects in the Philippines inf the future due to the new Government Policy. Sad, I think, since the needs are astronomical and Good Example is probably the best way of improving the situation.

merriam bolipata Email
23/07/07

Comments:
Good day! I need articles on Solid waste management with an enterprise development component. If possible, the ones that can be used by the women and youth sector. I would be very glad if you could send copies though my e-mail.

Björn W: Dear Merriam,

Thank you for your message. I propose that you search the web to find the kind of articles you are looking for. That would be easier for you to get what you want.

Ferdinand Tiongson Email
27/06/07

Comments:
Hello everyone there

It's a good practice for everyone.

Is it possible to advertise in any local television (noontime show and tele-novena) regarding this project. We want to wake-up individual on what happening on their surrounding.

We want them to see the good news.
Let not be a political will, we need to push everyone in this kind of project for future.

Thanks and Mabuhay to this kind of project.

FherD

Björn W: Dear Ferdinand,

Thank you for your encouraging comments. It is hard for me as a consultant to push too much for projects. A successful project has to be founded on a sincere will and commitment from the client - just as in Pinagkaisahan.

Ratie 
07/06/07

Comments:
Dear Bjorn,
 
The information that I need is about the monitoring system it self. I need to know how the other country operate it. I need guidelines about monitoring location, monitoring time, frequency and duration, methods and procedure of monitoring, monitoring parameter, monitoring equipment and technical specification, monitoring data system, data analysis for purpose of air quality status, evaluation of air quality monitoring and air quality monitoring reportage from other country that much more advance than Indonesia. 
 
Fiuuuhhh.. it's quite a lot,huh?  
 
Hope you can linked me to other source also. Thank you very..very..much!!  

Björn W: Dear Ratie,

Oh well that was indeed much. I will reply to you directly with some detailed recommendations where to start looking for the rules and regulations in this field. Basically it is the US EPA and the European Union that set the baselines today.
Good luck!

Ratie 
07/06/07

Comments:
Hi! Im Ratie, from Indonesia. Im a fresh graduate who's now working at an NGO in Indonesia. My assignment is doing some research about air quality monitoring system (AQMS). While Im searching at google, I found this interesting web. I got few info from here, but I need more info about AMQS in other country, so a better AQMS system in Indonesia can be build. If there is any more information, I hope all of you can help me. Thank you very much.

Have a good day!

Björn W: Dear Ratie,

Firstly, I would like to call AQMS Air Quality MANAGEMENT Systems; i.e. you don't only monitor the ambient air but you actually use the monitored data - and other functions like Emission Databases and Dispersion Modelling - to learn about the current situation and its causes, and then you use the tools/functions in the AQMS to simulate how to improve the situation in an optimized way.
Secondly, there is huge amount of information available about various ways of running AQMS and some project information too (inter alia on the Internet like Conexor's website), so it is mainly a question of looking around and learning.
Thirdly, in order to build an optimized AQMS there is a need for a couple of fundamental things, based on my experience:
1) Political long-term commitment including the courage to REALLY enforce rules and regulations;
2) Investment financing (which normally needs 1) unless it is financed from the "outside");
3) Long-term financing which means that there must be budgets for maintenance and improvement of the AQMS investment done.
4) Long-term interest from interested and well-educated staff, who naturally needs a reasonable salary which in turn depends on 1) and 3).
Sad to say I have seen many more or less well designed projects in your country that have been financed by foreign donors, but when it then came to maintaining and improving the AQMS the result is very poor - if not to say non-existent. And the investment is just worthless

I am sorry I can't help you more than this at this stage but please come back with more specific questions.

Mawie Email
06/06/07

Comments:

hi. I'm Mawie studying at De La Salle University - Dasmarinas. Eventually taking up architecture and is kind of interested in proposing an Industrial Ecology at Payatas. so, if you could help me with it, i hope you do, please email me. m2c_w@hotmail.com. Thanks. your site i a big help.

Björn W: Dear Mawie,

Thank you for your kind comment about the website. Well there is certainly a need for all kinds of good projects at Payatas. I will contact you via e-mail.


Steven Smith 
13/05/07

Comments:
Hi!

I am an engineering graduate from Canada with a strong interest in environmental issues.  I really enjoyed browsing the website and reading about the various projects.  Very interesting and informative!  It's always great to see proactive environmental work going on in the world, especially in terms of global environmental education.

Keep up the good work!
Steve Smith

Björn W: Dear Steve,

Thank you for your kind comments. I try to focus on hands-on practical results rather than another report . Good luck to you and your work too!

Bai Shi Jie 
27/04/07

Comments:

Hi there! I am an undergrad from the Singapore Management University. A team of 19 of us will be going to payatas to help the children there. We will be working with HOPE Worldwide Philippines. Thus, we intend to seek for sponsorship from Singapore companies. Is it alright if i use one of your photos in our newsletter? Please kindly reply asap to my emails. Thanks a million. =)

Björn W: Dear Bai Shi Jie,

Sure you can use any picture provided you refer to Conexor's website in your newsletter. I have sent you an e-mail too. Good luck and welcome to the Philippines.

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