May I comment on the controversy surrounding the cutting of 1,050 trees along the 42-kilometer highway in Pangasinan by the Department of Public Works and Highways or its contractor on November 2013-February 2014. Serious objections were raised by Patricia Gwen Borcena, environmental activist and founding president of Green Research, on reasonable grounds that the felled trees were centuries-old and considered natural heritage. She said the next targets were 1,829 trees.
By Peter Wallace
Zero-based budgeting makes great sense, and has been successful. The old days of just adding and adding without thinking are gone (and the corruption-prone system of reenacting budgets has been abolished as well). Everything has to be reviewed as to whether it makes sense, as to whether it is really needed, and is correctly funded. Anything new has to be challenged as to its relevance and need.
By Neal H. Cruz
Environment Secretary Ramon Paje finally woke up and stopped the massacre of trees in road-widening projects—but only after thousands of mature trees have already been felled. As many as 1,059 trees have been cut in Pangasinan. More trees have been cut in Nueva Ecija, Bulacan, Bataan, Laguna, Iloilo, and other areas. Indeed, there seems to be an indecent haste to cut as many trees as fast as possible in spite of protests by local residents and environmental groups. Any tree on the side of a road is in danger.
By Antonio Montalvan II
As of last count over the weekend, they have reached a staggering number—69 in all. A record number, says the popular online petition platform Change.org of the 69 local and national petitions calling for a stop to the cutting of century-old trees that stand, literally, in the path of road-widening projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways.
By Neal H. Cruz
Ogden Nash wrote that limerick as a parody of Joyce Kilmer’s poem “Trees,” and also of the billboards that were mushrooming and dotting the highways of the United States. Had he been in the Philippines lately, he would have written the last two lines differently: that unless the DPWH stops killing trees along the highways, he would never see a tree at all.