Binhi rethinks the whole idea of reforestation. What makes it special is its focus on the prime endangered Philippine tree species. Binhi will bring back vanishing trees that are highly valued and those that are native to the Philippines.
Binhi shall start with the few remaining seedlings of these trees and grow them into Mother Trees in planting sites where they can be best protected and nurtured. These sites include, but are not limited to, school grounds, public parks, leisure estates, residential areas and urban spaces as available. These Mother trees will be used to propagate more seedlings for transplant all over the country. And to ensure the sound implementation and sustainability of Binhi, EDC will enter into long-term agreements with Binhi Tree hosts and monitor them through a databank and GIS-generated map.
Ultimately, Binhi seeks to empower the Filipino people so they may take it upon themselves to regenerate these tree species that would have otherwise been lost to us forever.
Binhi fuses EDC’s success in community-based forest management with First Gen’s sustainable energy business and the Lopez Group’s ‘environmentalism in Philippine business’ philosophy.
Binhi is the Filipino word for germling, embryo or seed. In essence, Binhi aims to create a ripple effect by modeling a corporate green movement in the Philippine business community.
ABOUT THE LOGO
Binhi’s icon is the seed of tindalo (Afzelia rhomboidea blanco vidal). Tindalo is chosen to represent the prime, endangered Philippine trees that Binhi aims to proliferate and protect. The tindalo seed icon will be used to convey key messages such as the re-generation of forests, the return of biodiversity and re-cultivating the Filipinos’ attitude when it comes to environmental preservation in the era of climate change.
BINHI’S FOUR-PRONGED STRATEGY
TREE FOR THE FUTURE
Urban forestation of prime endangered Philippine Tree Species
We shall grow a thousand forests from a single acorn planted and nurtured at the heart of the city, by the city folks themselves. We target the establishment of forest parks or urban reforestation in the 81 provinces of the Philippines.
This is the primary goal of Binhi’s Tree for the Future, that every Filipino develops the passion to preserve and protect high value but endangered Philippine trees. Planting these vanishing hardwood species will also create awareness about such tree species as they will be propagated in public parks, school grounds, and leisure estates nationwide.
Sustainable partnerships with the local government units, Department of Education, universities and colleges and non-governmental organizations and city-based groups are encouraged to join this particular component. They will help us safeguard our tree parks to ensure the survival of our endangered premium endemic species, which could very well be our greatest contribution to environmental preservation.
Each tree planted would have individual signboards indicating its unique features or story, for better appreciation of the public. Examples are Mancono (Xanthostemon verdugonianus), world’s hardest wood which is endemic to the Philippines; various dipterocarps such as Red Lauan (Shorea negrosensis), Tanguile (Shorea polysperma) , Tiaong (Shorea ovata), Almon (Shorea almon), Bagtikan (Parashorea malaanonan), Mayapis (Shorea palosapis) which are marketed internationally as Philippine Mahogany known as among the world’s finest lumber; Saraca (Saraca indica) and Amherstia (Amherstia nobilis), regarded as King and queen of flowering trees, respectively.
TREE FOR FOOD
Livelihood by re-vegetating open and denuded forest lands
Forest plantations and/or agroforestry farms under the Integrated Forest Management Agreement (IFMA) will be established in the five geothermal project sites of Energy Development Corporation (EDC), namely: Leyte, Albay/Sorsogon, Negros Oriental, Negros Occidental and North Kidapawan.
Binhi’s Tree for Food component will establish a total of 5,000-hectare plantation over a period of ten (10) years or 500 hectares annually in these provinces. Tree for Food will engage farmers’ associations and community organizations to cultivate tree farms in these target areas:
Denuded and logged-ever forest lands
Brushlands and inadequately stocked areas
Areas covered by Community-Based Forest Management Agreement (CBFMA) issued by DENR to people’s organizations (POs).
When the tree farms mature, the beneficiary organizations will share the proceeds from the sale of wood products while earmarking another amount to replant the harvested compartments of the plantation. This will be sustained by adopting a yield management scheme like rotation cutting.
TREE FOR LIFE
Assisting natural regeneration by bridging forest gaps
Rainforestation farming will be the centrepiece strategy of Tree for Life. EDC will bridge the forest gaps between important mountain systems to bring back the once robust biodiversity. Select areas will be designated as protection zones for conservation and biodiversity study with premier institutions like the University of the Philippines. These forest bridges will be grown to mimic the structure and function of natural systems.
Community involvement will be vital in Tree for Life. They will be partners from seedling production to maintenance and protection. Forest Bridges will be established in the Northern Sierra Madre Natural Park (NSMNP) and the Mt. Kanlaon Natural Park (MKNP).
TREE FOR LEISURE
On-site nature appreciation by sprouting ecotourism forest parks
Tree for Leisure will preserve the natural beauty and ambience forests by designating them as ecotourism spots. In collaboration with the Department of Tourism (DOT), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Local Government Units (LGUs), EDC will convert select areas in its geothermal project sites into ecotourism destinations.
These geothermal ecotourism havens will encourage Filipinos to commune more often with nature, either for meditation, trekking, recreation or simply for relaxation – this while providing sanctuary to wildlife species. For instance, EDC’s geothermal project site in Bacman has been ecotourism-certified by the DOT and it houses the world’s largest fruit bat and can only be found in the Philippines, the golden-crowned flying fox acerodon jubatus and the flying fox pteropus vampyrus.