Praises Camarinenses for greening project
By ED G. YU
OCAMPO, Camarines Sur, Feb. 23 (PNA) — Drawing from the triumphs of unity and heroism of the Filipino people during the original Edsa People Power Revolution 25 years ago where thousands of people rallied to oust a dictatorial regime, President Benigno C. Aquino III urged every Filipino to once again unite and contribute in providing solutions to the problems of global warming by planting trees and saving the environment.
President Aquino made the call on Tuesday, Feb. 22, during the launch at Barangay Sto. Nino here of El Verde Movement, a greening project of the provincial government of Camarines Sur that aims to plant 12 million trees by 2012.
Saying that the adverse effects of global warming cannot be solved by the government alone, the President lauded the efforts of the people of Camarines Sur led by Governor LRayVillafuerte in spearheading the massive tree planting program to help save Mother Nature.
The President thanked the participants of El Verde for showing the same unity and heroism that was displayed by the people in Edsa I. “There is no doubt as to the success of El Verde 12 million trees by 2012,” he said.
President Aquino said El Verde is comparable to the triumph of Edsa. The 500,000 tree seedlings that will be planted will bear fruits equal to 500,000 opportunities, not only to save the environment but also to sow the seeds of a better future for many Filipinos.
Aside from preventing floods and landslides, the trees that will be planted could also be the source of livelihood for the people, the President said.
After his short speech, President Aquino signed the plastic pot containing a seedling as proof of his commitment and support to Camsur’s El Verde Movement.
The country’s Chief Executive also led the ceremonial planting of the 500,000 trees that will be planted in one hour on Wednesday, Feb. 23 all over the province by some 10,000 residents coming from 1,036 barangays in CamSur’s 35 towns and two cities.
Governor Villafuerte in his speech informed President Aquino that the El Verde Movement combines biodiversity conservation, economic development and a climate change adaptation strategy to help reverse the rate of deforestation in CamSur.
We want to teach our people the importance of saving the environment and how they can help as active stakeholders, Villafuerte said.
A first of its kind in the country, the El Verde Movement is open to all families living in CamSur. Each participating family will be given an area to plant trees and they will be required to maintain a minimum of 2,500 trees for two years.
In return, the CamSur provincial government will give the participating family food packs and free educational subsidy for elementary and high school students. The members of the family will also be enrolled in the PhilHealth Indigency Program.
El Verde is also open to corporate sponsors that want to support the movement by giving donations, which will correspond to the number of trees they want to be planted.
Trees under El Verde Movement will be planted in rainforest, riverbanks, mangrove and beaches, and urban or populated areas.
With President Aquino during the El Verde Movement launching were: DILG Sec. Jesse Robredo, DENR Sec. Ramon Paje, DA Sec. Proceso Alcala, DAR Sec. Virgiliodelos Reyes, and Sec. Cesar Sarino.