The plastic waste crisis has been a longstanding environmental problem in the country largely due to the gaps in solid waste management (SWM) systems, including recovery, segregation, and recycling.
According to the World Bank, 2.7 million tons of plastic waste is generated in the Philippines each year. We also have one of the highest rates of mismanaged plastic waste globally, resulting in plastics ending up as litter and in landfills, and eventually leaking into bodies of water.
As a way to help address this, GMA Network and Nestlé Philippines forged a partnership for the planet with the aim to promote proper SWM and engage more Filipinos in building a movement for environmental sustainability through educational content. One of its highlights is the launch of the Kalikasanovela series starring SPARKLE artists.
Through four 30-second videos, GMA and Nestlé PH tapped on the Filipinos’ love of entertainment and storytelling to communicate the importance of the 3Rs—reducing, reusing and recycling plastic waste—and inspire consumers to embrace their role as stewards for the planet.
“Today marks a milestone as we launch Kalikasanovela, a fusion of our love for storytelling with our love for the environment. It is our belief in GMA that we need a concerted and cooperative effort to save our Earth and keep it livable.
This is why our partnership with Nestle is very significant for us. With our complementary strengths and the same vision, we hope to encourage as many Filipinos to be more responsible in their everyday living and be kinder to our environment,” said Angel Javier Cruz, Vice President and Head of Corporate Affairs and Communications of GMA Network.
Each Kalikasanovela episode makes use of a well-loved Filipino movie and TV series genre to tell a short story about plastic waste.
It also shows Nestlé PH’s initiatives and milestones in addressing the plastic waste crisis, including upcycling sachets into school chairs, reducing plastic in their product packaging, collecting and diverting over 60 million kilos of plastic waste from the environment, and educating its employees to reduce, reuse, and recycle plastics in their homes.
In celebration of Earth Day, GMA Network and Nestlé Philippines launched the Kalikasanovela last April 17, 2023, wherein– together with Sparkle artists Bianca Umali, Ruru Madrid, and Sofia Pablo who starred in Kalikasanovela episodes Katok, Ibaon, and Sirena, respectively talked about their experiences and learnings from participating in the project.
“As artists, it’s our responsibility to use our platforms influence for good, especially when it comes to matters concerning the environment. Being part of the Kalikasanovela series is my way of doing this—by helping spread awareness about the plastic waste problem in the Philippines,” said Bianca Umali.
For Ruru Madrid, it’s not enough to just talk about these advocacies, you also have to practice what you preach. “Understanding that if all of us will do small acts to reduce, reuse, and recycle can have a big positive impact on the environment. I know we can do it. We just have to start now.”
“Instead of using single-use plastics when I eat out or shop, I bring reusable items to reduce my consumption,” Sofia Pablo shared. “There are many alternatives to single-use plastics that are readily available in the market from water bottles and utensils to shopping bags. It’s up to us to make that choice to help our planet in our own little ways.”
Other SPARKLE artists who starred in the series include Sanya Lopez for Paalam, and Allen Ansay for Sirena. You can watch all Kalikasanovela episodes on GMA 7 and the digital platforms of GMA and Nestlé Philippines.
“We thank GMA Network for sharing our vision of a waste-free future. Our goal for the Kalikasanovela series and this partnership as a whole is to inspire more Filipinos to be part of the solution in addressing the plastic waste problem even in ways as simple as reusing, reducing and recycling plastic waste. We have to remember, tayo ang bida sa ating kwentong pangkalikasan. Together, we have what it takes to create a better world and shape a waste-free future for our children and for generations to come,” said Jose Uy III, SVP & Head of Corporate Affairs of Nestlé Philippines.
Last year, 400 GMA employees, including SPARKLE artists, joined sustainability workshops, and volunteered in coastal cleanup and tree growing activities together with Nestlé PH employees and other partners such as the Climate Change Commission (CCC) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).