Lopez Group launches books highlighting Ph biodiversity, need for conservation

Lopez-led First Gen Corporation and Energy Development Corporation (EDC) have once again reaffirmed their support for a greener future by coming out with three ground-breaking books on biodiversity conservation.

Rafflesia of the Philippines,” which is an EDC publication, stands out as the first book to present the latest taxonomic information on the 10 Philippine species of Rafflesia, the largest single flower in the world. A  Rafflesia flower can measure up to 100 centimeters in diameter and weigh up to 10 kilograms.

“Generations,” which First Gen is publishing, features the beauty and majesty of the mountains, natural rivers, streams, volcanoes, as well as the flora and fauna living in various power plant sites of First Gen across the country. “Generations” is First Gen’s contribution to national and global understanding of biodiversity and hopefully, their conservation not only for the present but future generations as well.

“The Philippine Native Trees” is a guidebook replete with photos and descriptions of native Philippine trees.  The book, which is supported by EDC, aims to educate Filipinos about native trees and the benefits they bring us.

“The Lopez Group of Companies has integrated greening activities into its business plans and programs.  Our environmental activities form an integral part of the need to sustain resources, such as water, that are vital in operating our geothermal and hydroelectric plants.  These books complement the collective efforts of the Lopez Group, particularly First Gen and EDC, to promote environmental protection not only within our areas of operation but across the nation,” Lopez Group Chairman Emeritus Oscar Lopez explained.

In the foreword of “Generations,” Federico R. Lopez, the chairman and CEO of First Gen and EDC, said: “The Philippines is one of 17 mega diversity countries in the world, which contain more than 75 percent of global biodiversity. It is also one of the most threatened as it has lost more than 75 percent of its original forest cover and tagged as one of the biodiversity hotspots in the world. The importance of the Philippines as a ‘Center of Global Biodiversity’ cannot be overstated.

“Conscious of this threatened natural wealth in our country that is found nowhere else in the world and realizing that about one percent of the country’s land area is under some form of management by First Gen after government decided to privatize these energy assets in 2007, we decided to embark on a journey to document the rich biodiversity found in our various sites,” Federico added.

“Thus, it is also the purpose of this splendid book — Generations – to demonstrate through words and photos, how First Gen is patiently working to preserve our precious environment,” Federico explained.

Wildlife species featured in “Generations” include the Philippine eagle, the flying lemur, the flying fox, and the tarsier, which can be found in the geothermal power stations of EDC in Bicol, Leyte, Mindanao, and Negros. These creatures form the core of First Gen’s Flagship Wildlife Species Program that the company implements in partnership with the Institute of Biology, University of the Philippines.

Rafflesia of the Philippines” contains interesting and inspiring stories of the flower’s discovery, its discoverers, and man’s relationship with nature. The book brings the reader to the early days of botanical explorations to reveal the appetite of man for adventure and personal recognition.  More than a coffee table book, it is a good resource material for taxonomists, conservationists, and Rafflesia enthusiasts.  A most significant part of the book is the primer on Philippine Rafflesia, which is based on the scientific research and field studies of our Filipino botanists working on this plant.  The primer is a pioneering effort in consolidating the latest and important information on the Philippine species of Rafflesia.


The three authors of “Rafflesia of the Philippines” — Dr. Julie Barcelona, Agnes de Jesus and Mabi David – collaborated closely to complete a book that is packed with literary drama and scientific facts. Laymen and scientists will find the book’s seamless fusion of drama and scientific facts an engaging read.  Dr. Barcelona has built an extensive fieldwork and publication track that have established her as the leading expert on Philippine Rafflesia. Ms. de Jesus, who is EDC senior vice president for environment and external relations, is a botanist and author of several technical papers. Ms. David, an accomplished writer, is credited for the extensive research, interviews, and creative integration of the book’s technical data and literary narration.  Award-winning book designer Felix Miguel designed the book.

“Generations” of First Gen, on the other hand, provides tangible proof that the business of power generation—when running on clean and renewable fuels—can coexist harmoniously with nature, communities, and the people around it.  First Gen, the country’s leading clean and renewable energy producer, uses natural gas, hydro and geothermal to run its power plants. EDC, which is an affiliate of First Gen, is the country’s largest geothermal energy producer.

First Gen’s Corporate Communications Department collaborated with seasoned writer Steven Knipp, along with nature photographer George Tapan, to produce “Generations.”

The Philippine Native Trees” book is produced by Green Convergence for Safe Food, Healthy Environment and Sustainable Economy.

First Gen and EDC will donate copies of Generations and Rafflesia of the Philippines to universities and other institutions, groups and individuals who are seriously committed to environmental protection and biodiversity conservation.


The Energy Development Corporation (EDC) is a pioneer in generating 100% clean, renewable, and reliable power as an electricity supplier in the Philippines for over 40 years. With power plants all over Visayas and Mindanao, the company is one of the biggest producers of geothermal energy in Asia and is expanding its reach in the international market, allowing it to offer customers affordable energy rates. EDC also strives to provide the best customer service it can to all its clients by having helpful salespeople and easy to understand contracts. Because of all of this, it is poised to become the premier supplier of electricity for the Philippines’ Green Energy Option Program. EDC takes its mission as a renewable energy provider seriously and goes beyond sustainability by investing in programs that enhance the environment and empower its partner communities, thereby fostering regenerative development. The company has also been working toward being carbon-neutral by improving its energy efficiency, as well as implementing various greening projects to ensure that its mission to provide future generations with a better life remains intact.