Smoke-Free EDSA: "People more than vehicles travel through EDSA."

What is the Smoke-Free EDSA Campaign?
It is an initiative of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) that aims to reduce the Total Suspended Particulates (TSP) concentration in EDSA by 20 percent at the end of 2003.

What are TSPs?
TSPs are small solid and liquid particles suspended in the air and include dust, smoke, metallic and mineral particles, soot, mist, and acid fumes.

TSPs are the most common air pollutants monitored in DENR’s air quality monitoring stations.

How much TSPs in the air can be tolerated?
The maximum tolerable level (national guideline value) for TSPs is 230 ìg/Ncm for a 24-hour exposure and 90 ìg/Ncm for a one-year exposure. (The unit of measuring TSP is ìg/ncm or microgram per Normal cubic meter.

What is the level of TSPs in Metro Manila?
The TSP readings along four areas in the National Capital Region (Makati City, East Avenue, EDSA, and Pasay) have been all below 230 ìg/ncm since the 1st quarter 2003.

The Congressional area, however, posted a high of 273 ìg/ncm for the first quarter 2003, which declined to 175 ìg/ncm during the second quarter 2003.

Although still below the national guideline value, the TSP levels in three areas increased during the 2nd quarter 2003: Pasay (from 204 to 214 ìg/ncm), Severina (32 to 39 ìg/ncm), and Pasig (97 to 135 ìg/ncm).

Ambient air quality monitoring reports are submitted monthly to the EMB.

What are the harmful effects of air pollution?

According to the Department of Health, pollution emitted by motor vehicles accounts for 80 percent of the overall pollution level in the country.

TSPs, even in small doses, affect breathing and cause eye irritation and serious lung problems. Diesel particulates from vehicles can cause lung cancer especially among children, the elderly, and those with heart problems, asthma and other lung illnesses.

Based on a study done by the UP College of Public Health, the incidence of intense coughing with phlegm, wheezing and heavy breathing has been observed among 32 percent of jeepney drivers, 16 percent of aircon bus drivers, and 14 percent among commuters. Thus, individuals who are directly exposed to smoke-belching vehicles for a longer period have a higher health risk.

One major contributor to air pollution is smoke belching. What are the causes of smoke belching in vehicles?
- Improper maintenance of vehicles
- Improper way of driving
- Weak vehicle engine
- Overloading of vehicles
- Use of low quality oil

How can smoke belching be prevented or reduced?
- Make sure that the engine is appropriate for the size of the vehicle.
- Have your vehicle tuned-up regularly.
- Avoid driving too fast.
- Avoid overloading your vehicle.
- Do not adjust the “governor” of your engine indiscriminately. This can destroy the mixing of air and gas, which will lead to improper combustion.
- Use clean diesel or motor oil.
- Have a regular oil change.
- Avoid leaving the vehicle in idle mode for a long time.
- Clean the vehicle’s air filter regularly.
- Encourage citizens to report smoke-belchers

What anti-smoke belching activities have been done?
- Under the Metro Manila Air Quality Improvement Sector Program (MMAQISDP), the MMDA procured smoke emission test equipment and distributed these to 17 local government units (LGUs) in Metro Manila.

Where in Metro Manila are the worst smoke belchers? The least smoke belchers?
- Based on initial smoke emission tests conducted, Pasay City has the highest ‘failing rate’ (81%) and Caloocan has the highest ‘passing rate’ (43%).

- Apprehension reports are submitted every two weeks (15th and 30th of the month) to the MMDA, LTO and DENR.

Who else are involved in the Smoke-Free EDSA Campaign?
Enforcing groups for roadside apprehension of smoke-belching vehicles along EDSA come from the MMDA, Bantay-Usok, and the City Governments of Caloocan City, Quezon City, Makati City, Mandaluyong City and Pasay City.

Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Transportation and Communications (DoTC), Land Transportation Office (LTO), Bantay Kalikasan, Partnership for Clean Air, and others

Other sectors are encouraged to participate or initiate activities to support the Smoke-Free EDSA Campaign. Suggested activities are as follows:

Schools along EDSA
- Display streamers or billboards on Smoke-Free EDSA
- Conduct art contests and essay writing contests for students
- Conduct orientation on clean air among teachers, students, parents and other school publics, in coordination with DENR
- Adopt a “clean car policy” for school and official/employee-owned vehicles
- Conduct emission testing for school and official/employee-owned vehicles
- Adopt “car-less day” or “less-car day “at least once a month

Shopping malls and public markets along EDSA
- Display streamers or billboards on Smoke-Free EDSA
- Adopt a “clean car policy” for official/employee-owned vehicles
- Conduct emission testing in your premises
- Put up photo exhibits on clean air
- Conduct orientation on clean air among officials and employees
Bus terminals along EDSA
- Display streamers and billboards on Smoke-Free EDSA
- Adopt “clean car policy” for all transport vehicles
- Conduct orientation on clean air among officials and employees including drivers and conductors, in coordination with DENR

Gasoline stations along EDSA
- Display streamers or billboards on Smoke-Free EDSA

- Conduct orientation on clean air among employees
- Establish distribution points for printed IEC materials on clean air produced by DENR and other government offices

Manufacturing companies along EDSA
- Display streamers or billboards on Smoke-Free EDSA
- Conduct emission testing for all vehicles entering your premises
- Reprint clean air information materials produced by DENR

Oil companies
- Sponsor printing and display streamers and billboards on Smoke-Free EDSA in strategic places like MRT stations
- Reprint clean air information materials like flyers and leaflets which can be distributed in selected gasoline stations along EDSA
- Endorse Smoke-Free EDSA in print and broadcast advertisement
- Sponsor orientation seminars on clean air in selected schools, especially those located along EDSA

- Ride mass transportation and the Metro and Light Rail Transits.
- Organize car pools.

Usok Alisin, EDSA Linisin
Let’s All Act to Clean the Air!