The Department of Environment and Natural Resources on Thursday said public safety is a major consideration in granting a tree-cutting permit.
Undersecretary Rodolfo Garcia, who is also the concurrent chief of staff, clarified the issue on the cutting of roadside trees in Naga City and Carcar City, Cebu to give way for ongoing road widening projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways.
Century-old trees, which are diseased and dying, already pose a high risk to public safety, he said.
“The aims of development projects and protection of the environment are guided by practicality and making sure we conduct consultation with the people—consideration will be easing the lives of the people,” he added.
Trees had to be removed because these already encroach the highway, including carriageways and sidewalks, thus endangering the lives of motorists and nearby residents.