TINAGONG Dagat in Mount Mandalagan is one of the most popular ecotourism sites in Negros Occidental that is blessed with natural resources.
This plateau at the top of the mountain was said to be a crater of an extinct volcano.
During the rainy season, the flat terrain, which served as a campsite, becomes a lagoon, which personifies its name Tinagong Dagat, or hidden sea.
Local and foreign mountaineers and tourists, due to its beauty, flocked to this hidden crown jewel in the Northern Negros Natural Park every summer.
The influx of local and foreign visitors in the province boosts our tourism industry and economic gains.
However, irresponsible tourists who trekked the area have left garbage and waste behind.
Just recently, the local government units of Talisay and Silay, along with other volunteers and private individuals, joined the clean-up drive at Tinagong Dagat initiated by the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (Penro).
According to Penro, due to the irresponsible mountaineering practices, improper waste disposal and presence of illegal climbers in the area, they have to spearhead the clean-up activity to maintain cleanliness and the natural state of the ecosystem in the province’s ecotourism site destination.
The group collected more than 100 kilos of various garbage, mostly plastic, cans and empty bottled containers.
While we don’t want to point fingers, the community, especially in the grassroots, has to help enforce the law in protecting and conserving our forests.
It’s our responsibility, as a citizen, to safeguard this hidden gem.