Press Release
June 27, 2015

Villar leads clean up and tree planting activity to mark Environment Month and Arbor Day

To celebrate the Environment Month and the Philippine Arbor Day, Sen. Cynthia Villar led the clean-up and tree planting activity at the Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Eco-Tourism Area (LPPCHEA).

"These events once again provide us with a very good opportunity to renew our commitment to environment protection and to create more awareness, so that more people will join our cause," Villar said.

Over 200 students from Las Pinas and Paranaque joined the activity, together with Villar SIPAG (Social Institute for Poverty Alleviation and Governance), LPPCHEA Management DENR-NCR, Save Freedom Island Movement, Wild Bird Club of the Philippines, Las Pinas Red Cross and the Philippine Native Plant Conservation Society, Inc.

June 25 is declared as Philippine Arbor Day by virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 396. During this time, all government agencies including government-owned or controlled corporations, private sector, schools, civil society and citizens are encourage to participate in tree-planting activities.

"We hope that participating in those activities would develop greater public awareness, especially among the youth, on the importance and role of trees in environmental health and human life," she added.

Aside from the clean-up and tree planting activity, the celebration also featured lectures on environmental awareness and disaster management orientation, nature walk, and bird watching.

June as Environment Month is celebrated by virtue of Proclamation No. 237. This year's theme is "100 Million Filipinos. One Planet Consume with Care."

"There is fear now of over consumption. According to experts, at the rate we are going with our consumption, if we did not take care of our natural resources, baka maubos ang mga ito," Villar added.

The Nacionalista Party senator also noted that the onset of the rainy season is a reminder of the importance of trees to prevent widespread flooding and the use of mangrove trees as barrier against storm surges.

Villar also encouraged the public to use the occasion to amplify the cause of protecting areas like LPPCHEA, which is threatened by development initiatives in Manila Bay.

LPPCHEA, a protected area as declared by Proclamation No. 1412 and listed by the Ramsar Convention as one of the world's most important wetlands.

Endangered bird species such as the Philippine duck and the Chinese egret frequent the area. It has a 36-hectare mangrove forest that also serves as a fingerlings spawning area.

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