ILOILO CITY: The Department of Environment and Natural Resources has launched a new urban greening program with the planting of 3,000 seedlings of Golden Shower and Fire trees along two major highways in Mandurriao district.
Environment Secretary Ramon Paje led the tree-planting activity which was also attended by Senate President Franklin M. Drilon and Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog.
Drilon lauded the DENR initiative in regreening both sides of the city’s 14-kilometer President Corazon A. Aquino highway known as the circumferential road and after four years, will show off yellow flowers for a Golden Shower Festival.
Drilon said the DENR will also provide the planting materials of Fire trees to be planted along the Senator Benigno Aquino Jr. Avenue leading to the entrance of the Iloilo Airport in Cabatuan.
Meanwhile, Paje announced a P38 million assistance for the improvement of the Iloilo Batiano River water quality system during the monthly Batiano River Development Council meeting here.
Paje said the funding is included in the 2015 budget to be deliberated by the Lower House on August 28.
Paje also assured another solar boat for the Iloilo River cruise program, in addition to the one donated by the One Meal Foundation.
He said DENR officials will be the first clients of the solar-powered boat when they join delegates of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Ministerial Meetings in a dinner river cruise next year.
Paje also announced the final schedule of the Apec meeting on Food Security and the Blue Economy here on October 4-6, with DENR as lead agency. The meeting will be participated in by some 1,500 delegates from 21 countries.
Mabilog said the DENR is rushing up the cleanup of the Iloilo River which will host a national dragon boat competition organized by Double Dragon Corp. on August 23.
Drilon will grace the event, which is part of the city’s Charter Day celebration on August 25.