An estimated 25,000 residents and visitors of this city trooped early Saturday morning to Sitio Impapay, Barangay Inagawan to commemorate the 26th Pista Y Ang Kagueban by planting trees that are endemic to Palawan.
Re-elected Mayor Lucilo Bayron and Vice Mayor Luis Marcaida led the holding of the event in Irawan that is home to the main source of water supply in Puerto Princesa.
In his speech, Bayron said the city administration’s focus in the remaining months of the year is to further realize the protection of the variety and variability in the watershed.
This will be done through the mass planting of Palawan endemic and fruit-bearing trees that characterize biodiversity. Tropical hardwood species like mahogany, he said, are perennial plants that need so much water, hence, not suitable for planting in the watershed area.
Among Palawan endemic trees planted, according to Atty. Carlo Gomez, head of the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) Narra, Ipil, Kamagong and Balete, and other fruit-bearing trees.
He said he believes that those planted in the Pista this year will have a survival rate of 70-80 percent.
Meanwhile, Imelda Baustista Schweighart, Ms. Philippines Earth 2016 and her elemental court, joined the mass tree planting activity in Irawan.
Participants of this year’s Pista were students from different schools, employees of the city and provincial governments, national and local agencies, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), police personnel, religious and civil societies, and other organizations.(PNA)