Editorial: We need more trees

File photo

DAVAO City’s growth has been going strong in the last five years. We saw the groundbreaking of a number of real estate developments ranging from townships to subdivisions.

If we look around us, the growth of the city is quite impressive for the last couple of years. However, there is something that is lacking in the city -- trees. Not many areas in the city have trees.

In most parts of the city, especially the downtown area, there are barely any trees that would provide Dabawenyos shade in the morning.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), “urban trees can help to mitigate some of the negative impacts and social consequences of urbanization, and thus make cities more resilient to these changes.”

In FAO’s online article, it said by strategically planting trees in the city “it can help to cool the air between 2 and 8 degrees Celsius.”

It also said large trees in cities are “excellent filters for urban pollutants.”

“They absorb pollutant gases (such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, ozone and sulfur oxides) and filter fine particulates such as dust, dirt or smoke out of the air by trapping them on leaves and bark,” FAO said in a statement.

With some parts of the city being prone to flooding, having trees in flood-prone areas can help prevent floods and reduce the risk of natural disasters.

There is a long list of benefits of trees in our urban landscape. However, with what we are experiencing right now -- the hot weather, the recent floodings, and risks from pollution -- it is best if we highlight the three benefits we just mentioned.

The city government might want to include in its development plans the strategic planting of trees around the different parts of the city. Our councilors could also consider crafting a legislation that would preserve trees around the city. A lot of land developers just put down trees instead of designing their developments with trees.

Planting trees in the city will not only beautify it. It will help improve the city in terms of its environment and will leave a lasting legacy to future generations -- a city that is sustainable and livable.


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