Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) 7 Regional Director Loreto B. Alburo bared that some 31,466 agroforestry and native tree species were planted as of third quarter this year, as contribution of the mining firms to the implementation of the national greening program in Central Visayas.

“The active support and cooperation of our operating mines and quarries in the region to pursue the “green” agenda of P-Noy and DENR Secretary Paje is indeed a welcome move as they have the necessary resources for nursery production and seedlings plantation,” Alburo said.

Based on an inventory conducted by a multipartite monitoring team (MMT) as of September 19, the total number of available seedlings produced by these companies is 144,982.

It may be recalled that 288.16 hectares or 110.41 percent increase of its 2011’s target of 261 hectares were grown with 145,187 of various native tree species by nine operating mines and quarries.

In a related development, MGB Acting Director Leo L. Jasareno issued Memorandum Order Number 2011-03 dated October 11, 2011 on the guidelines in the implementation of the NGP for the mines sector in connection with Executive Order Number 26 or the NGP.

The said order is aimed at ensuring the establishment of 34,000 hectares of reforestation areas outside of mining contract or permit areas, within three years from 2011-2013.

“It may be worth mentioning that while the mining companies are contributing very strongly the NGP, they have continued to sustain the MGB’s mining forest program,” he said.

He further added that a total of 1,050.714 hectares were reforested since 2001 within the mining contract area.

Alburo said tree growing and maintenance thru the mining forest program was already put in place and these plantations are continuously monitored by an MMT with other environmental programs and projects implemented by the mining companies,” he said.

President Aquino issued EO 26 declaring the implementation of the NGP as a government priority program to reduce poverty, promote food security, environmental stability and biodiversity conservation, and enhance climate change mitigation and adaptation.