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Road to 1M trees: Therma South, RAFI continue efforts to expand carbon sink

One of the Carbon Sink Management Program (CSMP) beneficiaries from Matigsalug Manobo Tribal People Council of Elders Davao, Inc. (MAMATRIPCEDI) shares with Therma South, Inc. and RAFI team members his strategies in planting and nurturing the trees in his assigned area.

DAVAO CITY — Despite the pandemic, AboitizPower subsidiary Therma South, Inc. (TSI), together with Ramon Aboitiz Foundation, Inc. (RAFI) and its project partners, continues to make strides toward their goal of planting 1 million trees by 2024 as part of its Carbon Sink Management Program (CSMP).

“The goal of the CSMP is to establish a long-lasting and significant strategy for carbon sequestration to mitigate the emissions of the power plant, while enjoining our indigenous communities to be partners in environmental stewardship, forest protection and conservation, and working towards sustainable development goals such as life on land ,” TSI Reputation and Stakeholder Management Supervisor JK Huyatid said.

Established in 2015, the CSMP aims to create a carbon sink by forging partnerships with various indigenous peoples’ groups and communities in Davao City to reach the 1 million trees target. A carbon sink is any natural environment, like a forest or the ocean, which absorbs more carbon than it releases and thereby lowers the concentration of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Road to 1M trees
TSI and RAFI, together with community partners recently visited the existing CSMP sites in Marilog to check on the progress of the previously planted indigenous trees

“For this year, we target to produce and plant another 100,000 seedlings of mixed timber and fruit trees. We are also maintaining the 400,000 seedlings currently in the nursery which were planted from previous years,” RAFI Project Manager Reu Zabala said.

“The CSMP project has made a great impact on our community, and gave us an opportunity to rehabilitate and restore our ancestral domain,” MAMATRIPCEDI Project Administrator Datu Oscar Sarahan said.

Representatives from MACOEMMADACCI and MAMATRIPCEDI will undergo various training on project monitoring, farming and carbon computing this year as part of the CSMP program.

To date, TSI has planted and grown more than 700,000 trees in Marilog District, Davao City under the CSMP. This program is a testament to TSI’s support to the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, particularly on Responsible Consumption and Production and Decent Work and Economic Growth.

AboitizPower subsidiary TSI operates the 300-megawatt (2×150 MW) Davao coal-fired power plant located along the boundary of Davao City and Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur. It utilizes the Circulating Fluidized Bed (CFB) technology and it is the first plant in the Philippines to build a “coal dome” to safely store coal and prevent fugitive dust emissions.

About AboitizPower

AboitizPower is the holding company for the Aboitiz Group’s investments in power generation, distribution, and retail electricity services. It advances business and communities by providing reliable and ample power supply at a reasonable and competitive price, and with the least adverse effects on the environment and host communities.

The company is one of the largest power producers in the Philippines with a balanced portfolio of assets located across the country. It is a major producer of Cleanergy, the company’s brand for clean and renewable energy with several hydroelectric, geothermal, and solar power generation facilities. It also has thermal power plants in its generation portfolio to support the country’s baseload and peak energy demands.

The company also owns distribution utilities that operate in high-growth areas in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, including the country’s second and third largest private utilities.

AboitizPower, together with its partners, is the Philippines’ largest owner and operator of renewable energy based on installed capacity. In the next 10 years, the company will significantly expand its Cleanergy portfolio, in support of the government’s efforts to promote renewable energy in the country. AboitizPower will build an additional 3,700 MW of renewable energy, growing its existing Cleanergy capacity threefold by 2030.

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