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AFP wants to turn Metro green in 2016

Public asked to raise 1M fruit tree seedlings for planting in vacant lots
/ 12:47 AM December 27, 2015

WITH the help of the public, the Armed Forces of the Philippines aims to transform Metro Manila from a concrete jungle into a forested area of sorts next year.

Under a program it launched earlier this month, the AFP is targeting the propagation of one million seedlings from fruit seeds to be planted later on in vacant lots throughout the metropolis.

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With “Race to 1,000,000 Seedlings” set to begin in January, the military has encouraged the public to pitch in by raising seedlings from fruit seeds in their backyards for the next six months.

The AFP’s Civil Relations Service (CRS) will be leading the effort, utilizing social media to urge participants to post their experiences on Facebook or Twitter to inspire others to join the cause.

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“This project also aims for participants to make it a habit to always save the seeds of fruits they eat. We look forward to a future when every resident in Metro Manila would always plant seeds of fruits they eat, and reuse plastic bags as poly bags,” said Lt. Col. Marlowe Patria, the AFP-CRS’ 7th Civil Relations Group chief.

According to him, the program was part of the military’s efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change and high gaseous emissions in the metropolis.

Maj. Gen. Joselito Kakilala, AFP-CRS chief, said that Metro Manila was chosen since it has one of the highest pollution levels in the country due to millions of vehicles emitting pollutants daily.

He added that they wanted the advocacy to start at home so that awareness of the effects of climate change would be instilled not only in adults but also in the youth.

“While Filipinos have yet to face the impending consequences of this issue which has emerged as a new threat that the AFP has to deal with, climate change should be tackled seriously in order to prepare the organization,” Kakilala said.

After six months or after the one million seedlings target is achieved, participants and stakeholders will plant the seedlings within the next six months in vacant areas to be specified by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

The AFP will also check on the newly planted seedlings to ensure that there will be one million trees added to Metro Manila’s thinning tree cover.

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TAGS: Armed Forces of the Philippines, environment, green city, Metro, news
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