PILI, Camarines Sur—For an hour on Thursday, over 7,000 volunteers planted more than a million mangrove samplings in San Rafael, Ragay town, to set a new Guinness world record for Camarines Sur.
Carried out through CamSur’s year-old El Verde Movement that aims to plant 12 million trees at the end of 2012, the new record of 1,009,029 mangrove saplings planted in an hour was the second Guinness feat for the province after records it established in 2011 to 2012.
Seyda Subasi Gemici, Guinness World Record international adjudicator, handed down the world record certificate to Gov. Luis Raymund Villafuerte in ceremonies also on Thursday.
The new record was achieved by Camarines Sur a year after the province set a Guinness record for the most trees—64,096—planted on one site at one time, toppling the previous record of 50,033 trees held by India.
Led by Villafuerte, volunteers from the villages, different schools, Philippine Army and the group Kalipunan ng mga Pilipina joined the mangrove-planting campaign.
The El Verde Movement has so far planted 5.8 million trees, aside from the million mangrove samplings planted on March 8, since it was launched on Feb. 23, according to Villafuerte.
He said the setting of the new world record carried the theme “Million Mangroves for Women, Environment and the Future” to celebrate International Women’s Day.
The governor said the mangrove-planting campaign was also the provincial government’s “way of paying tribute to women not only in the province but all over the country.”
In declaring the attempt successful, Gemici said all guidelines established by the Guinness World Record for the new category, which requires a minimum of 10,000 mangroves, have been followed.
Accepting the recognition given by Guinness, Villafuerte said the provincial government would remain steadfast in promoting environmental protection through the El Verde Movement and other similar efforts.
He said the planting of mangroves along coastal areas of the province would enhance the coastal environment with the establishment of buffer zones to shield communities against storm surges.
The reforestation of mangrove areas would also revive lost breeding ground for various marine species, create additional income sources for coastal inhabitants, enhance the coastal ecosystem and usher in eco-tourism activities, he added.