Trees for life
THE RAINS brought about by that freak typhoon wending its way along a path parallel to but not traversing the Philippines, Taiwan, and Japan have become a welcome boon to the country and especially its flora. The browning landscape is slowly becoming green once again. How long will this relief from the ravages of what was becoming a hot, hot summer last? Well, the rainy season is just around the corner and, as I mentioned in my last blog entry, it is time to take stock and plan what trees to plant to make up for the abuse we have heaped on our environment. The interesting thing about modern communications today is that they provide one with instant knowledge that can be put to good use. For example, there are any number of organizations (NGOs) in the world that help those unable to do so to plant trees that neutralize a particular person's carbon footprint. I saw several websites with carbon footprint calculators which would help one figure out just how much he or she contributes to global warming in a year. Then, a given number of trees would be planted that would -- in a few years -- effectively make up for said individual carbon footprint. For a fee, of course. A few months ago, Sister Pilar Verzosa, RVM, a good friend of the current environment secretary, came up with a tree planting project that would credit certain trees planted to generous individuals (read: those who made donations). I am sure that she would appreciate any effort to help her various projects through such efforts that also contribute to mitigating global warming. Instead of planting solitary trees along busy thoroughfares or village streets, I would like to suggest that like-minded groups seek out patches of bare land that one finds all over the metropolis. These can then be converted into urban mini-forests that would go a long way toward restoring the balance of nature. Better yet, after a few years, these mini-forests will develop into little ecosystems with all kinds of flora and fauna. Among the latter will be an assortment of birds. If properly developed with its own water source, one could possibly find a return of the more delicate species that have long disappeared from our midst, and which one can only find these days in those rare patches of pristine land in the rural areas. Planting a variety of trees, bushes, and flowering plants will help attract butterflies, bees, birds, and other animals and insects that will make for a more pleasant and beneficial urban setting. Maybe the first step is to take the power to cut down trees away from mere individuals and subject this singular act to the scrutiny of a whole cabal of tree-huggers. Perhaps the next tree to be cut down can also be used to construct an old fashioned gallows from which the ones responsible for the dastardly act can be hung till sunset.
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