Geothermal energy needs lush forests to recharge its reservoir. Without trees to hold and release water deep into the earth, geothermal steam fields will dry up and will not be able to produce enough steam to run its power plants.
For this reason, geothermal leader Energy Development Corporation (EDC) has been planting, growing, and maintaining forests in Negros Oriental where it has been generating clean, renewable, reliable geothermal facilities for over 36 years. From 2009-2019, the company has planted and grown almost three million Philippine native trees in the entire Negros Island with the help of its over 30 partners under its flagship BINHI forest restoration program. BINHI aims to bridge forest gaps and bring back to abundance 96 Philippine native trees mostly in its geothermal reservation areas.
Mount Talinis, which is known as the highest peak in Cuernos de Negros and has one of the few remaining old-growth forests in Negros Oriental, is one of EDC’s tree growing sites.
Recently, over 30 EDC employee volunteers climbed Mount Talinis to plant over 100 Philippine native trees. The group was led by Atty. Allan V. Barcena (Assistant Vice President and Head of Corporate Social Responsibility – Public Relations) and Norreen G. Bautista (Head of CSR Negros and Mt. Apo) and was assisted by the Valencia Eco-Guide Association (VEGA), PLSISI, and SCAA.
The team planted Nato (Palaquium luzoniense) seedlings. This species is one of the 96 native tree species that EDC aims to bring back to abundance through its BINHI forest restoration program.
“Our team of climbers from our CSR and other departments bond together with other residents of our partner communities in Valencia, Negros Oriental as we plant and grow native trees in Mount Talinis even if we do not have any operation in the area,” said Bautista “Each tree growing activity brings out the participants’ Bayanihan spirit.”
This is the 2nd time this 2019 that the EDC team has planted native trees in the Talinis mountain range. Previously, EDC volunteers and partners planted about 100 premium endangered native trees in the area in celebration of Earth Day 2018.
In recognition of EDC’s greening efforts through BINHI, the company is also the first Philippine partner to be tapped by the Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) as a tree assessor under its Global Tree Assessment (GTA) program. The GTA program aims to gather information for 800 Philippine native tree species that lack data to determine their conservation status. EDC is the country’s premier renewable energy company and one of the world’s largest geothermal producers. Its geothermal facilities in Valencia, Negros Oriental has been providing clean, renewable, reliable power 24/7 to Negros Island and other parts of the Visayas region for over 36 years.