April 24, 2024

Stop burning the forests

The burning of hundreds of hectares of forest lands in most of the municipalities in Benguet is alarming. It always happens at the onset of the dry season and will continue to destroy the trees, plants, wildlife, and watersheds until everything is gone unless effective protection measures are undertaken.
There are forestry laws to implement but why are there inhabitants in the forest? Forest fires are usually man-made due to slash and burn farming, encroachment, and land claims.
It is difficult to patrol the vast forests and rough terrains to apprehend those in the act of burning. What could be done is to detail forest guards in hot spots. Better yet to relocate those in the forests to appropriate places where they could have worthy livelihood in agri-forestry that could become tourism sites as well.
Let our conscience prevail for us to conserve the forests that are wonderful blessings to have fresh air, water, food, construction materials, and aesthetic gratification for everybody. — PERCIVAL B. ALIPIT, Baguio City