Net-Works Press Launch at the British Embassy in Manila
Net-Works Press Launch
10 June 2015
British Embassy Manila
An innovative, cross-sector initiative, Net-Works, tackles and addresses the growing environmental issue on discarded fishing nets and making use of these as recycled materials for carpet tile production. As such, by giving the means and resources to fishing communities in developing countries to sell waste nets, the local community receives long-term incentives to protect and preserve the natural environment.
In partnership with global carpet manufacturer, Interface, and international conservation charity, Zoological Society of London (ZSL), this unique global partnership program gives rise to a solid business solution, paving the way for long-term positive effects on marine and freshwater ecosystems in addition to providing financial opportunities to some of the world’s poorest coastal communities.
With support from UK Darwin Initiative, a UK government grants scheme that helps to protect biodiversity and the natural environment through locally based projects worldwide, the Net-Works project is working towards expanding the program in the Philippines.
Attended by local journalists and reporters from GMA, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Star, The Manila Times, to name a few, and foreign correspondents for UK and US-Based outlets such as BBC, CNN, and Guardian, Net-Works hosted a press launch last 10 June 2015 at the British Embassy Manila, highlighting the program as a local success story and a leading example of inclusive business.
As an introduction to Net-Works, Dr. Nick Hill, Net-Works Conservation for Communities Technical Specialist from ZSL UK, gave the attendees a succinct overview on Net-Works—from explaining how it functions and operates to divulging anecdotes of highlights from the project.
Guindacpan Barangay Council Member, Mr. Edrich Baron, shared the benefits received by the coastal communities in addition to what has changed in the fishermen’s practice as stewards of the ocean.
Following the testimony, Mr. Rob Coombs, Interface President & CEO, expounded on the progress of Net-Works—from the outline of key outcomes from the past year to its expansion into a program of environmental and social resilience in the coastal communities hit by natural calamities.
Mr. Rob Coombs of Interface, Dr. Nick Hill of ZSL, Mr. Stephen Lysaght of the British Embassy Manila, Mayor Milliard Villanueva of Concepcion, Iloilo, Mr. Edrich Baron of Guindacpan, and Mr. Amado Blanco of ZSL Philippines officiated the ceremonial cutting of the waste nets.
The program concluded with a panel discussion as led by Dr. Nick Hill, discussing how collaborative innovation drives inclusive business solutions and why such solutions are vital to the development of the region.
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