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Editorial | The massacred trees

“Poems are made by fools like me, but only God can make a tree” said American poet Joyce Kilmer in his much anthologized poem “Tree.” It is difficult to imagine a world without trees that provide cover and support all forms of life, including humans, here on earth.

In the name of development, we have wantonly decimated our forests. According to the National Geographic, forest cover is about 30 percent of the world’s area but they are disappearing at an alarming rate that pretty soon, we could no longer bear global warming. The World Bank estimates that between 1990 and 2016, the world lost 1.3 million square kilometers of forest – an area larger than South Africa. The destruction continues.

We try to save the forest as much as we can especially in the ugly reality of climate change. Yet locally, saving what little trees we have is a problem. In Tuesday’s city council session, Councilor Pilar Braga decried the “massacre” of the trees at the former Clifford Park, in front of Philpost.

In her most incendiary speech yet, Braga said: “what bothers me most is the thought that at the height of climate chances and global warming, at the height of seemingly endless series of earthquakes and aftershocks due to our incessant disrespect to Mother Nature, some of us would still have the heart to cut down trees unsparingly.

“What is happening? Who is responsible? What is the reason behind the cutting of those trees? How many more trees do we have to cut until we say no more! Until we shout, enough is enough!
“Who pushed the Go Button to kill those trees? Who issued the permits prior to their cutting? DENR? CENRO? We would like to know, Mr. President so that when the time comes that our children will not have trees to climb and enjoy anymore, we can say to them we at the City Council did not take this matter sitting down. We fought for their right to have an environmentally sound, rich, and peaceful future. We have to protect the trees and nature for the next generation to thrive on and survive.”

Braga has asked Councilor Diosdado Mahipus Jr., to give justice to the massacred trees.

We need to get to the bottom of this because truly, “only God can make a tree.”

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