The provincial government is set to reforest some 200 hectares of forest around Lake Manguao in Taytay, with funding allocation of P10.4 million.
Forester Rodel Cabintoy, project supervisor of Provincial Agriculture Office (OPA), said the reforestation project will be done in two phases until next year and will cover the barangays of Poblacion, Bato and Bantulan.
He added that the area is considered as one of the province’s Key Biodiversity Areas (KBA) and has already been declared as a protected area by the local government. The area has a total of 4,425 hectares for catchment and the lake itself is about 640 hectares.
“Maganda ang potensyal ng Lake Manguao sa agri-ecotourism. Sinasabi sa literature, may mga studies na isinagawa sa area na ang lake ay home to several species of birds, endemic at local na makikita lamang sa lake. Within the lake mayroon ding mga endemic freshwater fishes,” Cabintoy said.
He said that for the 1st phase of the project, they will plant 334,000 seedlings of mahogany, teak wood and other endemic species including Narra, Ipil and Apitong.
“Ang mungkahi ni Governor (Jose) Alvarez kung bakit tayo mag-integrate ng fast growing trees ay upang mapabilis ang pag-regenerate ng area,” Cabintoy said.
He also said they be will providing livelihood opportunities for the local residents such as organic vegetable production, livestock and direct labor for the nurseries and planting.
The Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) has committed P6.4 million for the reforestation project, as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) work, while the provincial government has put up a counterpart funding of P4 million.
The provincial board passed a resolution on Tuesday to pave the way for the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the DBP for the implementation of the project.