Siargao has an uncanny charisma that truly enchants you. The easygoing and mellow vibe of the island will put you in a trance, and for most of us living in a fast-paced, hustle and bustle of a big city – the soothing calmness is just what we inadvertently long for.
This very allure of Siargao is what makes it vulnerable to abuse. In the coming years, Siargao will be opening the island to more tourists – accommodating cruises and more foreign visitors with the opening of their international airport. That’s in the timeline of two to three years. Tourism will provide the island with more opportunities for employment and business, but with expansion of tourism comes issues – mostly concerning negative effects to habitats and the ecosystems.
To mollify the adverse effects of the tourism growth in the island, Cebu Pacific Air institutes “Juan Effect” sustainable tourism project, with Siargao as its pilot scope. A partnership with the Department of Tourism, “Juan Effect” aims to mitigate the impact of tourist arrivals on the environment in Siargao.
As an initial approach, Juan Effect has contributed forty-five plastic bottle receptacles to be installed in key tourist areas of Siargao where visitors can put in their plastic bottle wastes. The plastic amassed through the receptacles will then be made into eco bricks, or recycled.
#JuanEffect also encourages the local people of Siargao, and all Filipinos, to do their part as well. Through little acts like simply throwing trash in their proper bins, bringing of reusable water bottles and ecobags, if we all cooperate and do our share, it can truly make a big impact to the health of our environment.
Juan Effect Advocates Erwan Heusaff, Jasmine Curtis-Smith and Kyle “Kulas” Jennerman, together with fast rising visual artist and muralist Anina Rubio, introduced the initiative to the students of Dapa Elementary School and the rest of the baranggay, encouraging and inspiring them to do their share in this conservation effort.
Cebu Pacific has been mounting flights in and out of Siargao for the past ten years – the very first airline to do so. Since then, the island has become a popular tourist destination, on top of maintaining its status as a world-class surfing spot. Cebu Pacific Air flies up to four times a day between Siargao and Cebu, and once daily between Manila and Siargao, using its fleet ATR 72-600 aircraft, which has the lowest fuel consumption and lowest environmental footprint in its category.
Read more about Juan Effect by visiting their official page, JuanEffect.com.