STA. ROSA, Nueva Ecija – The local government of this town encourages couples here who will undergo counseling, a requisite for marriage, to bring one tree seedling each to plant in this municipality.
The requirement has been formalized in Executive Order (EO) No. 29-2020 issued recently by Jaen Mayor Josefino Angeles.
The Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office (MSWDO) receives the seedlings and in collaboration with the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office (MENRO), identify the planting sites.
Angeles rationalized his order as necessary, citing the destruction of forests that has resulted in “biodiversity loss, erratic climate change, strong typhoons, flooding and siltation of rivers.”
“The 1987 Philippine Constitution declares that the State has an obligation to protect and advance the rights of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature,” the order read.
It also cited the mandate of RA 0176 or Arbor Day Act of 2012, to all provinces, cities and municipalities to observe the occasion by planting trees.