EDC tapped for BGCI’s global tree assessment program

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ENERGY Development Corp. (EDC) has been tapped as Botanic Gardens Conservation International’s (BGCI) first and only local partner for its Global Tree Assessment (GTA) program.

In a statement on Tuesday, the Lopez-led company said under the partnership, it will be receiving a P1-million grant over a two-year period.

BGCI is part of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), an organization working in the field of nature conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. It also formulates measures for the protection of the environment through data gathering, research, field projects, advocacy, and education. By 2020, the GTA program should have the first global list of tree species and their conservation assessments

“This partnership with the IUCN and BGCI could not have come at a more opportune time. We welcome the privilege — albeit the daunting task of being the Philippines’ first and only assessor of 800 native trees species,” EDC Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Federico R. Lopez said in a statement.

EDC, through its Binhi program, will provide information on 800 Philippine endemic tree species to BGCI. BGCI noted that only 25,000 of 80,000 global tree species have been assessed in terms of their risk of extinction.

Through the Bihni program, EDC has reforested 9,500 hectares with indigenous species and has propagated 96 native tree species, which are about to be extinct.

Aside from gathering data, BGCI will also train the Binhi team and its partners, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) about the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List methodology. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang