Global Business Power Corp. with West Visayas State University (WVSU) will conduct a 150-hectare reforestation and carbon sink project in Iloilo.
The project, titled as Handuman and Carbon Sink Project, aims to mitigate climate change and raise environmental awareness through planting trees that will serves as carbon ink.
Handuman is a Hilagaynon term that means “legacy.”
GBP, through subsidiaries Panay Energy Development Corp. (PEDC) and Panay Power Corp. (PPC) has adopted a property owned by WVSU-CAF in barangays Jayubo and Sagcup in the municipality of Lambunao.
“The 150-hectare carbon sink area inside the WVSU-CAF campus highlights the shared commitment of GBP and WVSU to help conserve the environment and combat climate change,” GBP president Jaime Azurin said.
The project will last for seven year, in which the first four will be dedicated to planting and establishment of the reforestation areas; the remaining three will be for the maintenance of the planted trees.
At least 67,000 seedlings must be planted every year, as stated under the memorandum of agreement.
GBP had been doing planting activities in the areas since 2015, before the coordination project.
Two types of trees will be planted in support of the agroforestry project component.
Forest trees that are native to the area and fruit-bearing trees such as jackfruit.
“This partnership between Global Business Power Corp. and WVSU is one big step towards ensuring the survival of our future generation. Our joint effort to plant trees and preserve our forestland is a legacy of love for humanity and Mother Earth,” WVSU president Dr. Luis M. Sorolla, Jr. said.
GBP Panay operation head Petronilo Madrid said the project aims to be sustainable and go beyod compliance of the Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) through the incorporation of community organizing and development.
Aside from that, locals with children studying in WVSU-CAF will also benefit with their Work-for-Study, where community leaders will give them lectures about financial literacy and ways to spend their salary wisely.
“The goal is to make the people understand the importance of the project as well as its benefits to the people through consistent dialogue and communication,” Madrid said.
The reforestation area will be used by students of WVSU-CAF as laboratory.
GBP operates 11 power generation facilities in Cebu, Iloilo, Aklan, and Mindoro. The company acquired a 50 percent stake in Mindanao-based Alson Thermal Energy Corp in 2017.