puerto_princesa_underground_river.jpgHere's something to get excited about, FNites! The Puerto Princesa Underground River is one of the 28 finalists vying for a spot in the New 7 Wonders of Nature, which aims to showcase the best of the world's natural wonders.

The river competed with over 440 different locations nominated from over 220 countries and made it to the top 77 entries in a global poll. A panel of experts included it in the top 28, and it joins the ranks of such wonders as the Amazon Rainforest, the Great Barrier Reef, and the Dead Sea. Voting is currently underway to determine who makes it to the final seven. The competition closes when they announce the results on November 11, 2011.


WHAT IS THE PUERTO PRINCESA UNDERGROUND RIVER?

Located in the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park, the Puerto Princesa Underground River is believed to be the world's longest navigable underground river. It passes through a chamber-filled cave with stalagmites and stalactites before flowing into the South China Sea.

The river also serves as the home to a variety of plants and wildlife, and the UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Site in 1999 for its role in preserving the balance of nature.


WHY VOTE FOR IT?


Voting for the Puerto Princesa Underground River shows our pride and faith in the country's natural wonders. If it wins, the site could also experience a great boost in tourism, which in turn will fuel the country's economy. Puerto Princesa City Tourism Officer Rebecca Labit says she expects a 20 to 40 percent increase in tourism and cites international sources anticipating and showing a great increase in tourist revenues for those sites who make it into the New 7 Wonders of Nature shortlist.


HOW CAN YOU DO YOUR PART?

Making the Puerto Princesa Underground River and the Philippines a part of history is easy! You just have to cast your vote and spread the word to your friends and family so that they can show their support too. There are three ways to vote:


1. SMS: Text PPUR to 2861 to vote. Each SMS costs P2.00 for Sun Cellular and P2.50 for Globe and Smart users.

2. Online: Visit New7wonders.com's voting page, select Puerto Princesa Underground River and six other finalists as your picks for the New 7 Wonders. Fill in all the required fields and register an account. After receiving the site's official email, click on the link to confirm your vote.

3. Telephone: Call any of the phone numbers below and hit 7723 after the message and tone. You will hear a thank you message to confirm your vote.

+23 9220 1055
+1 869 760 5990
+1 649 339 8080
+44 758 900 1290


WHO ELSE SUPPORTS THE CAMPAIGN?

Musician Noel Cabangon is just one of the many advocates in Wunderground United, a group of dedicated Filipinos promoting the underground river. On June 5, Noel organized a free music festival entitled "Tunog Wunderground" at the Quezon Memorial Circle to gather support for the campaign. Noel told Inquirer.net that the event was organized as a response to the Green Cities Agreement between the Puerto Princesa and Quezon City governments, now "twin cities" dedicated to boosting ecotourism and helping the environment.

The ads of the campaign advocates below were taken from Wunderground United's Facebook page and were created specifically for "Tunog Wunderground." Click through the gallery below to see who else supports the bid to make Puerto Princesa Underground River one of the world's New 7 Wonders of Nature. Don't forget to do your part by voting and telling your friends all about the campaign!


Want to read about more media personalities and their causes? Check out this gallery:
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(Photo of Puerto Princesa Underground River courtesy of Wunderground primer)
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