Heads and representatives of various Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) stakeholders plant mangrove saplings in Binictican areas inside the freeport on Friday. Contributed photo

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT – A Subic-based media group and various stakeholders planted mangrove propagules at the Binictican Mangrove area on Friday. 

According to Central Luzon Media Association (CLMA) Zambales Olongapo chapter president Vic Vizcocho Jr., a total of 200 mangrove propagules were planted during the Mangrove Propagation and Cleanup Drive at this premier Freeport. 

The drive was spearheaded by the CLMA and the Samahang Mamamahayag ng Subic Freeport (SMSF) and was partaken by officials from government agencies such as the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), the Subic Clark Railway Project (SCRP), New Clark City (NCC), and the Bureau of Customs Port of Subic. 

The local government of Subic, Office of the First District Representative of Zambales, and the Philippine Navy were also among those who took part in the mangrove propagation.

Meanwhile, private entities such as the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), Subic Enerzone, Subic Water, RP Energy, Fuel East Energy Corporation, Subic Bay Il Meglio Marine Services(SBIMMS), Aman Sinaya Water Refilling Station, GN Power Dinginin (Mariveles Bataan) and the Manila Times College of Subic also took part in the mangrove propagation and cleanup drive. 

The SBMA Ecology Department provided the propagules needed for the mangrove planting, with Environmental Management Specialist Cenevix Maniago providing details regarding the mangrove propagules, guiding the volunteers on how to plant the mangroves. After the drive, the group consisting of over 130 delegates went to the Pamulaklakin Nature Park where they learned from Aeta elder Tatay Kasoy the basics of jungle survival. 

The renowned Aeta has been the instructor of jungle survival for American soldiers stationed inside then Subic Naval Base. SBMA Senior Deputy Administrator for Regulatory and SBMA Ecology Center Manager Amethia dela Llana-Koval  lauded the volunteerism conducted by the group, citing that he hopes more volunteers would help in the protecting the ecosystem of the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. 

She said that both the government and the private sector have a stake in the protection of nature, and what better way to do so than by providing a platform that would unite the two sectors in a tree-planting program. 

The official expressed her gratitude to the CLMA for spearheading the program, and to each and every company and volunteer who gave their time to help in planting mangroves in Subic Bay Freeport.