SENATOR Manuel “Lito” Lapid has filed a measure which requires all dealers, retailers and similar entities engaged in the sale of motor vehicles to plant at least ten trees for every sales transaction.
This requirement of tree planting shall be accomplished within six months from the date of the sales transaction as reflected in the official receipt issued to the buyer.
Senate Bill 1938, seeks to contribute to the reforestation efforts of the government. Senator Lapid cited that the emission produced by motor vehicles contribute not only to air pollution but also in the destruction of the environment as a whole.
Thus, planting trees should be an activity that could start off from the dealers and retailers of motor vehicles.
Recall that country was just devastated by three consecutive strong typhoons (Quinta, Rolly and Ulysses) in a span of less than a month while in the middle of a global pandemic.
While typhoons maybe regular occurrences in the country, however they have become more destructive as years pass by, both in terms of loss of human lives and economic damages. Time and again, the connection between flooding and denuded forests is sufficiently proven.
“Hindi naman lingid sa ating kaalaman na kabilang sa nagpapadumi ng ating hangin at kasama na rin sa dahilan ng pagkasira ng ating kalikasan ay ang mga sasakyan at ang ibinubuga nitong usok. Ngayon ramdam na natin ang tindi ng galit ng kalikasan lalo na sa panahon ng mga sakuna gaya ng bagyo kaya ngayon na rin ang tamang panahon na sa tingin ko ay dapat na aksyunan natin ang problemang ito. Isang konkretong batas ang dapat na maipasa kaugnay nito at pwede natin simulan bilang requirement sa mga dealers ng sasakyan na kapalit ng kinita nila sa kanilang negosyo ay magbalik sila ng kaunting pabor para sa ating kalikasan sa pamamagitan ng pagtatanim ng puno,” Lapid said.
During the last typhoons, deforestation along flood-prone areas was hugely blamed for intensifying the level of inundation. That is why this measure pushes for mandatory tree planting for every motor vehicle sales. Motor vehicle refers to four-wheeled road vehicle designed to carry passengers including, but not limited to sedans, coupes, station wagons, convertibles, pick-ups, vans, Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) and Asian Utility Vehicles (AUVs).
The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) shall be the agency tasked with the enforcement and monitoring of obligations imposed under this measure. All dealers, retailers and similar entities shall submit to the DTI Regional Office exercising jurisdiction over their respective principal place of business an annual report of their tree-planting activities in compliance with the law, once it is passed.
“Oras na maipasa ang batas na ito ay sisiguruhin nating seryoso at istrikto ang implementasyon nito. May inilatag tayo sa ating panukala na mga karampatang parusa sa mga car dealers at retailers na hindi susunod sa pagtatanim ng puno. Bukod sa multa ay posible pang mapasara ang kanilang negosyo kung paulit-ulit silang magpapasaway. Sa ganitong paraan maihahatid natin ang mensaheng seryoso tayo sa ating laban para sa kalikasan. Hindi rin dahil kinakaya ng ating mga kababayan ang mapait na tama ng mga sakuna ay ipagpapatuloy na lamang nating pabayaang makalbo ang mga bundok at gubat natin. Dapat na magkaroon ng konkrentong aksyon para masolusyunan ang problemang itom” Lapid added.
The bill cites that any dealer, retailer or similar entity who fails to satisfy the tree planting requirement within the period set shall be liable for a fine not exceeding P10,000 for every tree planted. Repeated non-compliance for two (2) years within a five (5) year period shall result to a fine not exceeding P20,000 for the outstanding number of trees not planted within the said period. Repeated non-compliance for three or more years within a five (5)- year period shall result in the closure of the non-compliant business entity and fine not exceeding P30,000 for the outstanding number of trees not planted within the said period.
Meanwhile, the trees shall be planted i locations identified by Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) with due consideration of the principal place of business of the covered dealer or retailer.