Empowering Reforestation in the Philippines

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by: Angela Nicole Mananghaya

Forests are significant to mankind as well as to other living organisms for they provide beneficial materials and effects that the living need. These include the wood, raw materials that are usually converted to usable products such as furniture, wooden shelters, etc. In addition, these forests help prevent floods and soil erosion, increase underground water supply and humidity of air, provide an abode for the wildlife, and check air pollution (“Save Forests and Wildlife,” n.d, ¶2). However, in the Pearl of the Orient- the Philippines- continuous degradation of the forests or what is known to be deforestation (Maycock, 2011, p.398) is being performed, resulting to serious problems including the displacement of wildlife species, the occurrence of severe effects during or after a tropical storm (which is commonly experienced by Filipinos), and the increasing level of temperature in the country. In fact, Philippines ranks number three in the world’s fastest deforestation rate (Padilla, 2011) that has mainly been due to agricultural expansions and severe cases of illegal logging (“Philippine Deforestation,” n.d, ¶5). Fortunately, there exists the natural or intentional restocking of depleted forests and woodlands, the inverse of the given process, which may primarily address the negative effects of deforestation in the country- Reforestation, as it is so called.

One of the things that reforestation offers is not necessarily to restore but prevent the extinction of wildlife species as their habitats are continuously being destroyed. According to Toothman (n.d, ¶5), the reforestation of the corridors of trees that lie between forest parcels could give the animals and other species a larger and safer habitat where they could mix with other populations, thereby boosting their genetic diversity and preventing their extinction. In fact, this particular method has already been done in the country. In the island of Mindanao, on the...
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