Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Concert opens eyes of high-school teens to green scene

Concert opens eyes of high-school teens to green scene
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | Tue, 04/10/2012 11:06 AM
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Seniors at SMK 1 state vocational high school in Central Jakarta rushed to the school’s auditorium last week in need of a break after sitting for final examination tryouts.

Using prayer mats to sit on the floor, they were eager to enjoy a music performance and a movie presented by the Music Syndicate of Earth Dwellers (Simponi), a group concerned with environmental and social issues.

Simponi used the occasion to campaign for the environment and to promote a green lifestyle to students.

Simponi manager M. Berkah Gamulya started with a slide show describing how Jakarta had changed over the last 40 years.

“Through music and film, we want to encourage the students to improve the city’s environment.”

Berkah said in his presentation that only 9.38 percent of Jakarta was green or open space in 2010, down from 49.4 percent in 1974.

Meanwhile, the number of residents of the city had doubled from 4.5 million in the 1970s to around 9 million in 2010, he added.

Traffic in Jakarta was no better. He said that the city’s residents had 9 million motorcycles and 4 million cars and added an additional 1,068 motorcycles and 216 cars everyday.

Berkah said that the uncontrolled development of commercial buildings would make Jakarta’s environmental condition worse.

“There are 132 malls, 279 supermarkets, and only 153 traditional markets in Jakarta. This year, there are 20 malls that are going to be built and all of them will produce waste every day.”

Jakartans could build one Borobudur-sized pile of trash every two days, he added, making a comparison with the world-famous Buddhist temple in Central Java.

Simponi suggested that students take small actions to improve the environment, such as using homemade compost baskets, not littering and planting trees to improve the environment.

The school’s deputy headmaster, Agus Ramdan Rukmana, welcomed the program.

“It is a positive program for the students. We also want ours to be a green school.”

One student, Suciati Delima, 18, said that the event was important.

“We became aware when the comparison to old Jakarta and its recent condition was made. This world is not only for us but also for future generation. We have a responsibility to take care of it,” she said.

Suciati said that the school had a green program requiring every student to bring one tree every new school year to be planted on the school’s grounds.

“We don’t have a wide open space, so we plant the trees in pots and put them in any free spot at the school.” (cor)

Simponi’s “Our Jakarta, Green Jakarta” program is touring 20 local high schools until May. Schools interested in booking a program can email to simponi10@gmail.com or call 08158019813

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