DPWH suspends cutting as conservationists hold rally to protect trees

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Thursday, August 7, 2014


THE Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) 7 resumed preparations to cut the remaining three acacia trees in the City of Naga last night as conservation advocates hold a rally nearby.

But DPWH 7 suspended work as some conservationists climbed on the remaining trees.

DPWH 7 Director Ador Canlas clarified an earlier report that Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson ordered them to stop the cutting.

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“The report was inaccurate,” he said, adding that Singson’s order was to resume the cutting of diseased trees along the national highway in the City of Naga.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 spokesperson Eddie Llamedo said there are no orders to stop the cutting of diseased trees in Naga.

Diseased

Llamedo said DENR foresters also found diseased trees along the national highway in the neighboring town of San Fernando.

He said 77 trees in San Fernando are defective. Of the 77, 10 are century-old acacia trees.

Assessment of trees lining the national highway in Carcar City is still ongoing. According to initial findings, four trees—including two acacia trees, one of which is more than 100 years old—were found to be diseased, said Llamedo.

Members of the Movement for a Livable Cebu (MLC) organized a rally that started at 8:30 last night in Barangay Inoburan, near the trees that were scheduled to be cut.

The group called on DPWH and DENR to allow an independent and certified tree expert to conduct a study on the condition of all century-old acacia trees in San Fernando and Carcar City before they start cutting them.

Llamedo noted that conservationists were silent when deliberations were made on the DPWH’s application for a special tree cutting permit.

He urged conservationists to be vigilant in making sure that DPWH 7 complies with the condition in the special tree cutting permit, which is to plant 100 trees to replace every tree cut.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 08, 2014.

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