The Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia (AASSA) and the National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) jointly organized the International Symposium on Emerging Technologies for a Greener Earth in conjunction with the First AASSA Executive Board Meeting held on 22-24 October 2013 at the Manila Hotel, Manila, Philippines. Supported by the Global Network of Science Academies (InterAcademy Panel, IAP), the Department of Science and Technology Councils, Department of Agriculture and Department of Environment and Natural Resources from the Philippines, this symposium aimed at providing a venue for discussing recent developments on emerging technologies of the Asian countries to attain a greener earth. Professor Won-Hoon Park, president of AASSA and concurrent chairman of the Korean Federation of Science and Technology Societies (KOFST) Sharing Community of Science and Technology, led the Opening of Poster Session and Exhibits. He was joined by Prof. Namik Aras, vice president of AASSA and National Scientist Mercedes B. Concepcion, vice president of NAST PHL.
National Scientist Concepcion welcomed the participants and thanked everyone for attending the international symposium. She emphasized the important role of AASSA in finding science-based solutions and in creating policy agenda that will guide Asian countries on emerging technologies for a greener society.
In his keynote speech, Professor Park discussed the Role of Current and Emerging Technologies towards Green Economy and Environmental Attainment of the Republic of Korea. He emphasized that “green growth” leads to economic growth, which is essential in keeping the society in balance and the environment clean. He thanked the Philippines for being a good host of the international symposium.

During lunch, Acd. William G. Padolina, president of NAST PHL welcomed the delegates and participants of the symposium and expressed his hope that the results of this international symposium can be used by legislators and policy-makers in providing science-based decisions on emerging technologies that could serve as basis for policy recommendations for a more competitive and greener Asia.

International science experts shared their insights and experiences in the three plenary sessions of the symposium. In the first plenary session, Professor Jinghai Li, vice president of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and member-at-large of the AASSA, talked about Emerging Mesoscience to Enable the Development of Energy Technology, while Professor. Carlo A. Arcilla, director of the National Institute of Geological Sciences at the University of the Philippines Diliman discussed Green Approaches to Mineral Extraction: Philippine Perspectives. Professor Aras moderated this plenary while Dr. Allan N. Soriano of Mapua Institute of Technology was the rapporteur.

For the second plenary session, Professor Chung Bang Yun of the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology, Republic of Korea discussed Smart Structures Technologies for Green and Safe Urban Infrastructure Systems, and Dr. Riuping Liu presented Arsenic Pollution Control in China: Technologies, Demo Engineering, and Strategies. Acd. Angel L. Lazaro, member of NAST PHL served as moderator assisted by Dr. Melito A. Baccay of Technological University of the Philippines as the rapporteur.

The third plenary session featured Professor Nikolay Lyakhov, director at the Siberian Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences who discussed Innovative Mechanochemical Bioactive “Green” Preparations of Soluble Silica from Rice Husk and Green Tea for Broiler Industry; Dr. Rabindra Prasad Dhakal, senior scientist at the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology, talked about Novel Bioenergy Approach for Sustainable Development of Nepal; and Professor Youngsook Lee of the Pohang University of Science and Technology, Pohang, Korea presented Genetic Engineering to Remediate Environment Polluted with Heavy Metals. Professor Jennifer Graves, member-at-large of the AASSA Executive Board was the moderator and Dr. Regina C. So of Ateneo De Manila University was the rapporteur.

Professor Aras presented the resulting recommendations of the symposium summarized into resolutions. Acd. Evelyn Mae Tecson-Mendoza, the Academy’s representative to the AASSA, and Acd. Ruben L. Villareal, Secretary  and member of NAST Executive Council, respectively, served as masters of ceremonies of the international symposium.

The highlight of the three-day activity was the First Executive Board Meeting of AASSA held in the morning of October 23. Afterwards, the AASSA delegates were given a brief cultural tour of Manila at the National Art Gallery of the National Museum and the historic Intramuros in the afternoon of October 23. On  October 24, a visit to the University of the Philippines Los Banos campus, specifically the Makiling Botanic Garden and Biotech Institute, and the nearby International Rice Research Institute was organized for the AASSA delegates.

The international symposium was attended by 150 participants  including 25 scientists from the different science academies in Asia and local counterparts in the country. The Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia (AASSA) is a nonprofit international organization with science and technology interests composed of 34 scientific and technological academies and science societies in Asia and Australasia.

The National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) is the country’s highest recognition and advisory body to the government and science community on issues concerning science and technology.