Philex Mines strengthens reforestation programs
by Andrew Doga-ong
Tuba, Benguet (6 February) -- The Philex Mining Corporation – Padcal Operations has strengthened its reforestation programs as part of its effort to implement responsible mining for the benefit of host communities and the environment.
In its 2009 reforestation accomplishment report furnished the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Benguet, the Philex Mining Corp. reported a total of 229,220 forest and fruit bearing tree seedlings of various species were planted in about 135 hectares in newly established reforestation areas and another 69,065 seedlings were planted to enhance the existing plantation sites.
The new reforestation sites are located mostly in barangay Ampucao in the municipality of Itogon.
Rodolfo Saguid, Environment Quality Monitoring and Enhancement Department Manager of Philex Mines said the firm's reforestation programs are contracted to the forest settlers or the community people to give them additional source of livelihood. He said the company will pay the implementers based on the survival of the seedling planted and the success of their respective reforestation projects.
The same report disclosed that some 7,776 seedlings from its nurseries were donated to various stakeholders for their respective tree planting and reforestation activities.
Recipients of the seedlings included the local government unit of Itogon, Community Environment and Natural Resources Office(CENRO)- Baguio, CENRO- La Trinidad, Lower Agno Watershed Forest Reserve – Protected Area Management Board, schools, civic organizations and some private individuals.
In support of the "Green Philippine Highways" program of the national government, Philex Mines also conducted maintenance brushing and enrichment planting activities at the Philex – Sta. Fe road in Ampucao, Itogon and at the Lion's Park, Kennon Road, Baguio City, the company's adopted area.
Saguid said the firm's intensified reforestation activities and the improved environmental management system gained recognition from various government and private groups.
Last year, the Philex Mining Corporation was conferred the First Runner-Up award in the "Best Mining Forest Contest" (Metallic Category) under the Mining Forest program participated in by 29 mining companies nationwide. (PIA) [top]