There were about 50 trees that were cut from kilometers 10 to 14 in Barangay Granada, Bacolod City, recently to make way for a sidewalk and solar tourism lights, Granada Barangay Captain Alfredo Talimodao Jr. said Thursday, April 15.
Talimodao said they allowed the recent cutting of the trees as they were assured by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) that for every tree cut, 100 seedlings will be planted in their place.
He will make sure that DPWH complies with its commitment. Talimodao said.
The Mahogany and Gmelina trees that were cut were about 20 years old, he said.
The DPWH said they had to cut the trees because the solar lights need sunshine to work, he added.
DPWH District Engineer Jaime Javellana said the project had an approved tree-cutting permit from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
Netizens have been outraged about the recent cutting of decades-old trees along the sidewalk at Barangay Singcang Airport.
The DPHW halted the cutting of the trees sparing nine, but it was too late for 26 others.
Bacolod Mayor Evelio Leonardia created a committee on Wednesday, headed by City Legal Officer Joselito Bayatan, to investigate the cutting of trees.
“What is most important now is we must make sure a similar incident does not happen again,” he said.
Bayatan said the committee will convene.
Among the papers needed for the cutting of the trees is the endorsement of the concerned local government unit, Bayatan said.
The DPWH simply got a resolution of no objection from the Bacolod Sangguniang Panlalawigan “but that is not an endorsement, that is simply one of the documents needed to complete the endorsement”, he said.
The DPWH cutting of the trees had no endorsement of mayor, Bayatan said.*