Petition for Pres. Benigno Aquino 111 to Spare the Trees at Baguio City’s Luneta Hill
Anytime from now until early December, a verdict is expected to come out from the Regional Trial Court Branch 5 regarding the fate of the 133 remaining trees at Luneta Hill, out from the 182 originally intended by SM to be cut but of which 49 have been earlier earth-balled and transferred despite a Temporary Environmental Protection Order (TEPO) against SM.
Those fighting for the trees to be spared are aware that if they fail to get a Permanent Environmental Protection Order (PEPO), SM, in just a few hours, can cut all the remaining 133 trees even before the petitioners against SM can file an appeal. This is because it takes many years for a tree to grow but only some 20 seconds to three minutes to cut a fully grown tree.
Mr. President, we, the undersigned, are appealing to your known sense of environmental justice, to please prevent this from happening. It is only you now who can stop the impending death of these priceless trees.
Trees give oxygen. Without oxygen, people die. Trees absorb dangerous greenhouse gasses that kill. Trees are symbolic to life, to Christmas, to sharing of love, to the children—the hope of tomorrow. Trees are symbolic to God’s coming on Earth.
Michael A. Bengwayan, Ph. D.
Director Cordillera Ecological Center