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The National Greening Program (and What UP Can Contribute)

The National Greening Program (and What UP Can Contribute)

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Published by Paul Eugenio
The National Greening Program (and What UP Can Contribute) Little has been known of President Aquino's National Greening Program, a project intended to partly restore the country's forest cover by by 2016. Through Executive Order 26 signed by the President, the goals of the NGP has been articulated. The program aims to plant 1.5 billion trees in 1.5 million hectares of land from 2011 to 2016. On average, it will entail the DENR, the main agency in charge of the program, and other stakeholders to
The National Greening Program (and What UP Can Contribute) Little has been known of President Aquino's National Greening Program, a project intended to partly restore the country's forest cover by by 2016. Through Executive Order 26 signed by the President, the goals of the NGP has been articulated. The program aims to plant 1.5 billion trees in 1.5 million hectares of land from 2011 to 2016. On average, it will entail the DENR, the main agency in charge of the program, and other stakeholders to

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Published by: Paul Eugenio on Jun 27, 2012
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10/22/2012

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The National Greening Program(and What UP Can Contribute)
Little has been known of 
 
President Aquino's
National Greening Program
, a project intendedto partly restore the country's forest cover by by 2016.Through Executive Order 26 signed by the President, the goals of the NGP has beenarticulated. The program aims to plant 1.5 billion trees in 1.5 million hectares of land from 2011 to2016. On average, it will entail the DENR, the main agency in charge of the program, and other stakeholders to plant an average of 250 million trees in 250,000 hectares a year – a target someobservers highlighted as “impossible under normal circumstances” (Kahurani, 2011). In fact, theprogram wants to double the number of hectares the government have planted with trees in thelast 25 years, a total of 750,000 hectares, seems to me a 'great Leap Forward', as Mao Zedongcould have described it.But what is most striking about the program is that is does not aim to plant trees alone. Inthe executive order, it was highlighted that the NGP also aims to pursue other things: “sustainabledevelopment for poverty reduction, food security, livelihood development, biodiversityconservation, and climate change mitigation and adaptation.” In this, the government hasrecognized that environmental issues such as the loss of forest cover does have an impact toother social issues as well. With a tree being planted, the government will not just ensure healthyforest cover, but also giving communities addes sources of income and added protection whendisaster strikes.The NGP is also designed to be a multi-sectoral initiative students, governmentemployees, the private sector and civil society groups are encouraged to plant trees in suitableareas avaliable to them, such as parks and forest reserves. With that, it is good to ask: As auniversity, what can we contribute to the success of the NGP?Science, more specificially, our faculty and scientists inside the university, has a veryimportant role in ensuring the success of the NGP. No group of people except our scientists candetermine the key aspects of the program. They're in the best position to provide the answers toquestions such as, “Where we should plant specific trees?” to “Will the trees be affected by weather patterns in these area?” Specifics such as soil composition, the terrain of the land, climate andbiodiversity can help the policy makers decide on the details of the project. Politicians andbureaucrats can only offer policy, but science will ultimately recommmend the details of theprogram. As a Public Administration student, it is necessary for me to highlight certain governmentintricacies about the program. It is good to ask how the NGP was formed as policy, and if their targets would be feasible or not. Certain issues such as transparency and program monitoring is

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