Cement plant’s quarry sites forested

CEBU CITY, Cebu (PNA) – Old limestone and pozzolan quarry sites within the country’s second oldest cement plant in Naga City, southern Cebu, have been rehabilitated and converted into pockets of forested areas.

More than five hectares of mined-out areas in Sitio Sindulan, Barangay Tinaan, Naga City within the 192-hectare property of the Apo Cement Plant have been converted into small forest areas, said the cement plant’s environment, health and safety engineer, Jenevy Patalinjug.

Patalinjug said the firm began rehabilitation efforts some four years ago. Such efforts, she said, are part of the cement company’s rehabilitation and recondition plan it presented to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)’s Mine and Geosciences Bureau (MGB).

Based on the plan, CEMEX, through APO Plant, will restore other patched areas in different parts of the quarries.

Patalinjug said efforts to rehabilitate the mined-out areas were difficult at first, as the cement firm had to protect seedlings planted from outside intervention.

However, the firm created its so-called “Grow a Tree” program requiring its employees not only to plant tree seedlings, but also to see to it that these grow and survive.

She said they usually conduct a tree-planting activity during an employee’s birthday.

So far, Patalinjug said the firm’s employees have planted various trees like neem, narra, malubog, acacia, Indian, magtalisay, jackfruit, mango, and cacao, among others.

She said the firm has also converted some three hectares into a cacao plantation.

(This article was published in Manila Bulletin, 25 June 2013.)

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