Tagaytay Highlands Plants 1,800 Trees

Blessed with abundant natural sorroundings, Tagaytay Highlands is proving that it is not only a leisure destination but can save the environment in many ways. Tagaytay Highlands held its 3rd "One Tree at a Time" tree-planting activity recently to mark its 18th anniversary celebration, and serve as kick-off to the leisure complex's goal to plant 1,800 trees within the year.

Under the Green Wave campaign of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, the tree planting is a part of the vision of Willy Ocier, founder of Tagaytay Highlands, to plant one million trees in 50 years inside the Tagaytay Highlands Complex. Although for the last 18 years, a series of tree planting activities has been held inside this enclave for a greener Tagaytay Highlands. This year's activity had a total of 150 seedlings of fruit-bearing trees such as atis, duhat, guava, guyabano, and star apple while last year yielded 200 and the first tree planting activity last 2010 completed 100 saplings.

"Planting trees is part of our thanksgiving to Mother Nature. The trees that we planted will also provide Tagaytay Highlands' species of birds and insects a new home. We will pass on a legacy to the future generation," Ocier said.

Officers and employees of Belle Corporation, Highlands Prime Inc., Tagaytay Highlands, the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity (ACB), Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), and diplomats from the ASEAN also graced the activity and voluntarily did their share in preserving Mother Nature.

Tagaytay Highlands, a "Friend of Biodiversity," has been doing tree planting activity since 2010 when ACB partnered with the leisure destination for its first tree planting activity. It was the first firm from the business sector to support the Green Wave Campaign aiming to generate awareness among the youth for biodiversity conservation.

"Apart from planting trees, we also conserve energy in significant respects. During off-peak days, Tagaytay Highlands splits up the lighting of the street lights and turning on the lights only in the important areas to minimize electricity consumption. To reduce this even more, incandescent lights have been replaced by compact fluorescent lamps which cuts down energy usage up to 60 percent. Likewise, heavy equipment are operated and maintained on a set schedule to minimize the electricity consumption. We also promote the use of renewable resources," said Club President, Jerry Tiu.