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The Country’s “Green Czar” Should Spare Pampanga’s Iconic Acacia Trees!

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A photo in the frontpage of the Manila Bulletin, formerly the nation's leading newspaper.

A photo in the frontpage of the Manila Bulletin, formerly the nation's leading newspaper.

Not too long ago, Mrs. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo appointed herself as the Philippines’ “green czar”. It drew criticisms from various environmental groups. Nobody from the green sector seemed to trust her “green leadership” especially due to several controversies she’s been involved with.

So far, she’s done nothing newsworthy for the environment. But with the above photo which I saw in today’s issue of the Manila Bulletin, I believe this is the right time for Mrs. Arroyo to make herself worthy of her designation and “dedication” to protect our country’s environment no matter how small the task or the issue at hand is.

The caption in the paper says:

OLD ACACIA TREES IN PAMPANGA. These old acacia trees in Pampanga, several of which are 50 years or older, are scheduled to be cut down to give way for a road widening project of the government. The Save the Trees Coalition has assailed the cutting of some 5,000 trees along the length of MacArthur Highway from San Fernando City to Angeles City.

Hopefully, when Arroyo gets back from her 45-minute meeting with US President Barack Obama in Washington, she’ll find some time to take this matter into her own “environmental hands” if she is really serious AND sincere about being the country’s environmental czar. Besides, Pampanga is her and her father’s hometown. She should also at least do something to save those iconic acacia trees which have beautified MacArthur Highway for many decades. The nation is already knowledgeable that she has all the political power to save these trees, to have them replanted elsewhere instead of being cut down for good. What the nation needs to know is if she has the political will to do it.

It would be hypocritical of Arroyo if she does nothing to save these trees when one of the things she would discuss with Obama is another environmental issue: climate change.

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