March 24, 2023

IEG Conducts Coastal and Upland Reforestation

By Institute of Environmental Governance (IEG)

The Institute of Environmental Governance (IEG) worked with the Extension Services Office (ESO) and the BulSU College of Science (BulSU CS) to conduct follow-up monitoring and evaluation of mangrove and upland reforestation activities in Brgy. Pamarawan, Malolos City, Bulacan, and San Mateo, Norzagaray, Bulacan. The two-day evaluation took place on March 17-18, 2023. This is similar to last year's Environmental Volunteerism Movement: A Community Engagement Day (EnVMACED), a voluntary field activity in which selected BulSU Administrators, faculty members, personnel, and students participated as part of the International Conference on Research Innovation and Community Engagement, which was held on December 16, 2022.

During the simultaneous upland and coastal reforestation activities, 800 fruit-bearing and hardwood trees such as Guyabano, Narra, Firewood, and Rhizophora were planted. Half of the 300 mangrove propagules sunk into Pamarawan's tidal flats have survived. The mangrove reforestation impact assessment is also part of Dr. Edwin R. Tadiosa's proposed extension project, Mangrove Rehabilitation and Conservation at the Islets of Malolos City, Bulacan, a program designed to eventually reduce the deterioration of mangrove areas in Malolos, Bulacan, affected by sea level rise and anthropogenic activities.

Meanwhile, the site in Sitio Suha, San Mateo, Norzagaray, Bulacan, must be cleared and brushed to properly count the thriving trees. The IEG has already coordinated with the people's organization Briquettor Association of the Philippines Inc. on-site maintenance; thus, another monitoring is planned for May. In addition to physically counting the remaining trees that survived, the group conducted key informant interviews to learn about the factors influencing their survival rate. Unsurprisingly, according to the information gathered during the consultation, the most common threats to tree growth include sea level rise and uncontrollable habitual plucking of propagules by children playing near the site. Temperature and forest fire are two factors that inhibit tree growth on upland terrain.

Selected BulSU representatives during the activity include Dr. Russell N. Alfonso, Head for the IEG; Ms. Joana May Nepomuceno, Officer-in-Charge for ESO; Ms. Jennifer C. Ignacio, Extension Program Component Head for Moog; Dr. Edwin R. Tadiosa, CS Faculty; Ms. Michelle Agustin, College Extension Service Unit Head for CS; Ms. Marissa Dela Cruz, CS Faculty; and Mr. Russel R. Ramos, ESO Staff.