Manila Standard celebrates Earth Month with Mangrove Tree Planting
Once again, employees of Manila Standard Publishing Inc., and Kagitingan Printing Press Inc., participated in their tree planting project, dubbed “Adopt a Tree: Mangrove Planting Activity.” This sowing, the seventh in the ongoing series, was held at Brgy. Balibago, Calatagan, Batangas, on April 27, 2017.
In line with the celebration of Earth month and with the company’s strong dedication and efforts to protect and sustain the environment, the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) champions of Manila Standard (MS) have planted, this year, over 1,000 mangrove propagules across 20 hectares.
According to Januel Peras, Officer-in-Charge of Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) – Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) of Calaca, Batangas, mangroves provide habitat for many wildlife species, including commercial fishes . Thus, it contributes in sustaining the local fish and shellfish populations.
“Itong mga mangroves ‘yung nagsisilbing proteksiyon sa ating mga corals, kung mapapansin ninyo mayroon silang characteristics na may mga ugat na nakatayo na tinatawag na ‘stilt roots’. Ito ang nagta-trap sa mga silt from uplands na maaaring tumabon sa mga corals, na nagsisilbi namang shelter ng mga isda at iba pang lamang-dagat,” he explained.
According to Peras, mangroves have been contributing a lot to the community of Brgy. Balibago.
Calatagan Mangrove Development Alliance (CALMADA) president Virgilio Enriquez shared that mangroves have been the source of living of the less-fortunate family in the barangay.
“Ang purpose ng mga mangroves dito sa aming barangay ay ‘yun nga’ng pagdami ng lamang-dagat na siyang ginagamit ng mga tao na pang-suporta sa mga pamilya at sa paghahanap buhay,” said Enriquez.
He added that mangroves are also vital in providing oxygen to the environment. “Kaya kadalasan ‘yung mga may sakit ay pumupunta dito para makalasap ng sariwang hangin mula sa mga mangroves.”
One of the ecological values mangrove also has is that it serves as a strong protection from big currents, lessening the chance and possibility of soil erosion and the effects of climate change.
CALMADA envisions Brgy. Balibago as a model barangay with volunteer organizations tasked and committed to environmental care and protection.
“Sana matularan ng ibang barangay itong grupo namin [CALMADA] para hindi lang kami ang may ganitong mangrove plantation, at mas lalong lumago ang mga bakawan (mangrove),” said Enriquez.
Peras and Enriquez warmly welcomed all the employees, hoping that the planted mangrove propagules will successfully grow in the coming years. The employees are likewise optimistic that the mangroves will continue to propagate along with the growth of the company.
Meanwhile, Anita Grefal, Standard Officer-in-Charge of Operation, said this year’s project is very special to Manila Standard as they have expanded their contacts with Local Government Units (LGUs) for them to have more activities and projects to collaborate on.
“May mga project kami na sarili lang namin, like this ‘Adopt a Tree’ project but mayroong ring activities na nakikipag-cooperate kami like sa projects ng DENR,” she explained, looking forward to these upcoming activities and projects.
The said tree planting activity was co-presented by San Miguel Corporation and was made possible by Metro Pacific, Globe Telecommunications, Artha Land, and Cebu Exchange.