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Council urged to strengthen ‘Trees Protection Ordinance’

COUNCILOR Temujin Ocampo called on fellow lawmakers to strengthen the implementation of the ordinance on tree protection following a recent tree-removal activity. 

Ocampo, the committee on environment and natural resources chair, said cutting down three trees at Candelaria corner Maya Street, Barangay 76-A, Talomo District contravened the environmental conservation efforts of the city.

“We all know how important trees are in our community in this day and age taking into consideration the importance of these trees in mitigating climate change and lowering the impact of global warming in the city,” Ocampo said.

“Planting and growing trees takes a while, hence, we have to assess and weigh carefully the advantages and disadvantages before proceeding in cutting them down,” he added.

In his privileged speech, the councilor said the barangay issued a resolution interposing no objection to the activity after finding out their rotting trunks are vulnerable to strong winds and pose a danger to public safety.

However, the councilor cited a separate report from the City Environment and Natural Resources Office that said the trees only need trimming “because it does not pose danger to the people and structures in the area.” 

Ocampo told TIMES there is a need for legislation to harmonize the local ordinance, particularly tree protection with that of the DENR-Cenro initiatives.

Kung naay putlon, dapat masayod ang city sa, klarohon ba dili kay naghatag ang city og recommendation unya naghatag pud ang pikas og cutting permit, diretso rapud putol ang tag-iya kay naa naman syay gigunitan dokumento,” Ocampo said.

Ordinance No. 0784-21, otherwise known as the “Trees Protection Ordinance of Davao City” not only highlights the contribution of trees in addressing climate change but also acknowledges that heritage trees are icons of the city’s past and “a reminder that our forefathers also valued the ecological benefits of trees which would benefit the future generations.”

“We may not be able to go back in time and restore the cut trees but we can work together to protect and preserve these trees for us and the generations to come by strengthening the implementation of our laws,” Ocampo added.


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