The Greenpeace ship M/Y Esperanza is leaving the port of Manila today to respond to the humanitarian crisis in Mindanao.
Von Hernandez, Greenpeace Southeast Asia Executive Director, said:
"Our condolences remain with the victims of typhoon Pablo. This is a very difficult time for the thousands of affected families and communities."
"We have cancelled the Esperanza’s planned expedition to survey the state of the Philippine seas in order to respond to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Mindanao. The Esperanza will leave Manila today to help ferry much needed supplies to communities devastated by typhoon Pablo, particularly in coastal areas that are currently difficult to access."
"Our lead partner for this mission is the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), who is responsible for the relief provisions which will be carried by our ship, and who will be receiving the supplies at our destination in Mindanao. We are also carrying relief goods provided by ABS-CBN Foundation and Save the Children Foundation."
"The frequency of extreme weather events such as typhoon Pablo has turned the Philippines into a disaster hotspot where weather related disasters are the norm rather than the exception. Every year our country continues to be in the top ten list of global climate risk indices. But while we are learning to cope more effectively in terms of disaster management and coordination, every year the stakes are also getting higher. This should be seen as a warning signal that we must work to enact climate change solutions for the sake of the future."
For more information:
- The Greenpeace ship, M/Y Esperanza has been in Manila since December 1, 2012 for the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) meeting. The WCPFC is a treaty-based intergovernmental organization that aims to conserve and manage tuna and other highly migratory fish stocks across the western and central areas of the Pacific Ocean. The meeting concluded last December 6.
- The Esperanza was supposed to begin her “Ocean Defender” Philippines Ship Tour today, December 8, and had scheduled public open boat activities for today and Sunday. These open boat activities have been cancelled.
- In light of the ongoing devastation and loss of lives in Mindanao caused by Typhoon Pablo, Greenpeace Southeast Asia has coordinated with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), ABS-CBN Foundation and Save the Children Foundation to help with the ongoing humanitarian crisis.
- The Esperanza will be delivering around 20 - 30 tons of relief goods, mostly food packs, blankets, mats and cooking utensils, from these organizations, as well as fresh water.
- The Esperanza hopes to offer relief to municipalities in Davao Oriental (Boston, Cateel, and Banganga) which are currently unreachable via land but may be reached via coast.
- Launched in February 2002, the Esperanza is the largest vessel in the Greenpeace fleet. Esperanza – Spanish for "hope" – is the first Greenpeace ship to be named by visitors to our web site.
- The Esperanza has visited the Philippines once before, from August to September 2006, for the Greenpeace global “Defending our Oceans Tour 2006.” While in the Philippines, the ship exposed how oceans pollution destroys vital marine habitats. She also highlighted how the establishment of marine reserves is a key solution to protecting the oceans.
- In 2006, The Esperanza also responded to a disaster while she was in the Philippines. She visited and bore witness to ground zero of the worst oil spill on Philippine shores. Greenpeace volunteers and Esperanza crew assisted the Philippine coast guard in the delivery of relief goods and clean up supplies to Guimaras Island, and helped install booms around Taklong Island Marine Reserve and several barangays to help mitigate the damage. We also conducted underwater documentation to help scientists in their assessment of the damage caused by the slick on marine species.
- Since its visit to the Philippines in 2006, the Esperanza has worked in the Antarctic, to stop the slaughter of whales, as well as around the Pacific Ocean, to expose how the world’s tuna stocks are being rapidly overfished almost to extinction.