In celebration of 156th Philippine Forestry Service and Arbor Day, the Forest Management Bureau and CENRO Calaca organized the Bike, Hike, Plant 2019 also known as “Moving Forest”. More than 700 bikers, hikers and planters trooped to Mt. Batulao Mt. Batulao in Brgy. Patugo, Balayan, Batangas last June 29. Participants carried the seedlings in their drawstring backpacks to be planted in Mt. Batulao.

“Tayo ay may 30 million hectares, at sa ngayon ang forest cover ay umaabot na lamang sa 7 million, ibig sabihin mga 23% ng ating bansa ang may forest”,FMB Director Nonito Tamayo said in an interview with ABS-CBN TV Patrol Southern Tagalog. 

With similar activities, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is able to continue to bring back to life the remaining forests and through the continuous implementation of the National Greening Program. 

A total of 2,000 seedlings of native/indigenous and fruit trees such as Narra, Banaba, Kalumpit, Bignay, Guyabano and Rambutan were planted. Assistant Secretary for Policy and Planning Corazon C. Davis said, “Someone is sitting in the shade today, because somebody planted a tree a long time ago”. She emphasized that the trees planted would be the shade of the youth and future generations. The trees will help beat air pollution and the fruit trees will serve as food for wildlife.

On the other hand, Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Jose Elmer C. Bascos said, “May tatlong bagay para ma achieve ang immortality: Una, ay magkaroon ka ng anak na lalaki; Pangalawa, magsulat ka ng libro; at Pangatlo, magtanim ka ng puno.”

The event was graced by Assistant Secretary for Policy and Planning Corazon C. Davis and    Assistant Secretary for Staff Bureaus Ricardo L. Calderon, Forest Management Bureau (FMB) Director Nonito M. Tamayo, PENRO Jose Elmer C. Bascos, CENRO Januel R. Peras, CENRO Noel M. Recillo, Calaca Municipal Administrator Rexner Jown Pastorall, Balayan Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officer Glenn De Vera and other stakeholders.

Other partners include the Local Government Units of Balayan and Calaca, the Philippine National Police, Bureau of Fire Protection-Balayan, Batangas Bikers Team, Calaca Cycling Team, and the University of Sto. Tomas Mountaineering Club. Corporate sponsors include: Holcim Philippines, Universal Robina Corp.—Sugar and Renewables Balayan (URC-SURE Balayan), South Luzon Thermal Energy Corporation (SLTEC), Calaca Industrial Seaport Corp., Central Azucarera Don Pedro, Inc., (CADPI), Kiwanis Club of CADPI,  Energy Development Corp., City Water—Mr. & Mrs. Noel T. Lopez, and Laguna Water.