Originally published on manilastandard.net
Energy Development Corporation (EDC), the all-renewable energy arm of Lopez-led First Gen Corporation, has received accolades anew for BINHI, its institutionalized regreening and reforestation program focused on rescuing and propagating endangered local tree species.
At the 2023 Tambuli Asia Pacific Awards, BINHI won the top Gold citation under the Care for the Environment category of the Sustainability & Corporate Purpose division and went on to receive the event’s highest commendation possible—the Grand Prix—considered the best among all other Gold winners across the division’s various categories.
Another EDC corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative, the Baslay coffee project in its Southern Negros Geothermal Project, also won a Silver award under the Inclusive Growth category in the same division. The Baslay program has been engaging slash-and-burn or “kaingin” farmers for over three decades and capacitating them with organic coffee farming and retail as an alternative livelihood.
The Tambuli Asia Pacific Awards is organized by the School of Communication of the University of Asia and the Pacific. This year was the inaugural presentation of the Sustainability & Corporate Purpose division, in addition to Tambuli’s traditional awards on Brand Purpose, with the private sector’s increasing emphasis on sustainable development and ESG (environment, social and governance) investing.
BINHI was also included in the first recognition ceremony of the ASEAN Green Initiative (AGI) held in Jakarta, Indonesia, during the celebration of 50th World Environment Day last June 5, 2023, spearheaded by the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity (ACB). BINHI was included under the Large Scale Category, which plants 5,000 or more trees. The BINHI Team was also invited to share its experience and knowledge on ecosystem restoration and mainstreaming of Philippine native trees.
The AGI recognizes individuals, NGOs, government and private sectors who contributed a lot in attaining the goal to plant at least 10 million native trees across the 10 ASEAN member states in a span of 10 years, in line with the United Nations (UN) Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.
“We truly value these continuing recognitions for our BINHI program that affirm its positive impact on the environment and local communities. Beyond sustainability, the challenge of regeneration is nurturing the environment and developing more reliable resources for future generations such as renewable energy,” stated Allan V. Barcena, EDC Assistant Vice President and Head, Corporate Social Responsibility and Public Relations.
To date, BINHI has planted more than 6.8 million native tree species, which have served as biodiversity habitats for more than 500 unique fauna species, primarily in EDC’s areas of geothermal operation across the country. The program counts more than 200 multi-sectoral partners in the implementation of assessment, propagation, planting and protection of the trees.
EDC is First Gen Corporation’s 100 percent renewable energy subsidiary with over 1,480MW total installed capacity that accounts for 20 percent of the country’s total installed renewable energy capacity. Its almost 1,200MW geothermal portfolio comprises 62 percent of the country’s total installed geothermal capacity and has put the Philippines on the map as the 3rd largest geothermal producer in the world. ###