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Bishop urges faithful to support TreeVolution: Greening MindaNOW

September 17, 2014
The Manila Bulletin
Mike Crismundo

For a greener future… and a world record

Butuan City – The former president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) Most Rev. Juan De Dios Pueblos of the diocese of Butuan has called on the faithful to be ready and actively involved in the Mindanao-wide tree planting activity on September 26, 2014.

With or without an attempt to break the Guiness World Record of the most number of tree seedlings planted in a span of one hour, Bishop Pueblos appealed to parents to lead their children in joining the continuing tree planting activity dubbed as “TreeVolution Greening MindaNOW.

The activity aims to have 4,636,000 tree seedlings planted in a span of one hour from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. covering 9,200 hectares all over Mindanao.

India currently holds the world record of the most number of tree seedlings planted in one hour when the 340,200 participants planted 1,945,535 from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. on August 15, 2011.

Tree planting and tree growing for future generations

Bishop Pueblos, who is also the father of Caraga Conference for Peace and Development (CCPD) urged the more than two million citizens of Caraga region to take responsibility in the stewardship of the environment as it will also save people from any disaster while also preparing for the future generation.

“By planting more trees, we will also be able to save more lives,” the soft-spoken prelate stressed.

Bishop Pueblos urged planters to focus not only on tree planting but on tree growing as well.

More than 23.000 participants from five provinces in the Caraga region are set to participate in the unprecedented Mindanao-wide tree planting initiative.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Caraga disclosed that each of the five provinces in the region will allocate 200 hectares of land where 100,000 seedlings will be planted to meet the region’s target of planting 500,000 seedlings in 1,000 hectares of land.

The Federation of Caraga Tree Planters started preparing tree seeds in their respective nurseries in an effort to have ample tree seedlings to plant in various areas in the region next week. The group is also planning to utilize all idle and vacant lands for the tree planting activity.

“We are not only targeting India’s Guinness World Record (GWR) here but this will surely help fight global warming and climate change mitigation for future generations,” an official from a tree planters’ group in Agusan del Sur said.

Private sector and LGU support

The private sector and local government units are also lending much needed support and backing. Philsaga Mining Corporation / Mindanao Mineral Processing and Refining Corporation President Atty. Raul C. Villanueva and company’s Resident Manager Engr. Ferdinand A. Cortes said the company is set to plant 130,000 budded rubber trees in the municipalities of Rosario and Bunawan, both in Agusan del Sur province.

Governors, mayors, lawmakers from various LGUs, religious leaders throughout Caraga region likewise reiterated their full commitment and their strong support to the ‘TreeVolution: Greening MindaNOW’ project.

Agusan del Sur Gov. Adolph Edward G. Plaza already directed all municipal and city mayors to prepare big number of tree seedlings for the big event.

“I already called on all the municipalities to take an active part so we can give our share in mitigating climate change,” Gov. Plaza said.

“We do not only intend to break the world record for the number of trees planted within our province but we also wish to manifest that Surigaonons are one with the rest of the world in its effort to protect and preserve the environment,” said Surigao del Norte Gov. Sol F. Matugas, chairperson of the Regional Development Council.