Telco jumpstarts tree planting
FOR Smart Communications Inc., the rains reinforce the need to pursue reforestation efforts not only to make the earth greener but also to help protect low-lying areas from severe flooding.
Last July, Smart jump-started this year’s tree-planting season at the Marikina Watershed with some 1,250 seedlings planted with the help of its employees. As part of the initiatives under its Kabalikat sa Kalikasan program, the telco has been encouraging its employees to take part in maintaining, preserving and rehabilitating the country’s forests, come rain or shine, in partnership with various institutions, local government units, communities and other stakeholders.
For 2012, the telco intends to focus on its existing planting sites throughout the country.
Japanese telco NTT-Docomo, through the PLDT-Smart Foundation (PSF), has so far donated a total of 12 million yen or nearly P6 million for Smart’s tree-planting activities since 2008.
While the tree-planting initiative formed part of Kabalikat only in 2008, Smart has actually been planting trees since 2005 to help offset the greenhouse gas emissions.
From 2005 to 2011, Smart and PLDT employees have planted a total of 1,126,075 seedlings and propagules for mangroves with the help of community stakeholders as well as volunteers from sister-companies and partner schools nationwide.
Planting sites include the Ipo Dam and Marikina watersheds, Calatagan, Subic, Mt. Banahaw, Puerto Princesa and Cagsao in Camarines Sur for Luzon; Cebu, Lapu-Lapu, Negros Oriental and Occidental, Iloilo, Guimaras and Bohol for Visayas; and Misamis Oriental, Surigao, Zamboanga, Sarangani, Digos, Davao City, and Tawi-Tawi in Mindanao.
These sites are constantly being monitored and evaluated in order to ensure a high rate of seedling survival.
In the Visayas and Mindanao, tree-planting activities were done through the help of LGUs, non-governmental organizations and schools.
A total of 36,750 seedlings, including 16,000 mangrove propagules and 20,750 seedlings of indigenous tree species, were planted in various sites in the region.
Meanwhile, a total of 38,100 seedlings were planted in Mindanao. From this number, 35,800 were devoted to coffee and rubber seedlings; 1,000 were bamboos while the remaining 300 seedlings were a mixture of indigenous tree species.
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