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MANILA, Philippines - Ideally, transport systems should get us to our destination as fast as possible. However, that isn't always the case. Take for example our transportation situation in the Philippines.

Every day we hop on these public transports in hope of getting to our destinations as early as possible. But with congested EDSA and malfunctioning trains of the MRT, we ask ourselves, are these modes of transportation necessarily good for us?

Bad transport system can affect one's physical and mental well-being. Here's how:

1.  Transport of emissions have long been contributing to the degrading health of human. In particular, automobiles emit numerous chemicals, including carbon monoxide, benzene, formaldehyde and other suspended matters dangerous to health. At the 2013 Sustainable Development Summit in New Delhi, Climate Change Commissioner Heherson Alvarez mentioned that more than 500,000 diesel-fueled vehicles in Metro Manila are responsible for about 70 percent of the carbon emissions. Health effects of such emissions include cardiovascular disease, respiratory diseases and cancer. It is also implicated in adverse health impacts on people’s reproductive, urological and neurological systems.

2. A World Health Organisation (WHO) report said that almost 1.3 million people die each year on the roads worldwide. In the Philippines, at least one person died in a road accident in Metro Manila every day in 2013. Drunk-driving is cited as the major cause of road accidents.

3. Prolonged exposure to transport noise has been shown to affect cardiovascular health. It also reduces a person's concentration and analytical skills, especially in children.

4. In the long run, vibrations created by vehicles cause muscle damage, changes in tendons, bones and joints, and psychological and cognitive impairment.

5. People who commute to work by car are less healthy than those who go to work by walking or biking. Cardiovascular and other health risks are lower among groups who use active transportation.

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The Philippine STAR
by Alixandra Caole Vila (philstar.com)
August 10, 2015