Change is inevitable and it is something that we have to accept, but that doesn’t mean that we shall protect what is left of the good thing. The question is would you sacrifice the air you breathe in the name of progress? Yes, progress brings about change but that doesn’t mean we have to destroy our natural resources. The people of Baguio City have been witness to nature’s wrath, we built huge buildings only to find them crumbling down during the 1990 earthquake. We enjoyed natural spring waters only to see it contaminated because of the construction of buildings, i can still remember fetching water from a nearby spring source, today that spring source dried up. The preservation of natural resources is really a touchy topic for the people of Baguio because we’ve witnessed the adverse effect of the depletion of our natural resources. The people of Baguio consciously or sometimes instinctively react through protests and legal actions whenever the environment is threatened. I remember several instances when the people of Baguio were united to protect what is left of our scarce natural resources.
The Time When We Were United
1. The Plan To Sell The Watershed Beside Convention Center – remember this time? when the GSIS reportedly decided to put the land where our watershed beside the Baguio Convention Center was put in the market for sale? Being a prime lot and centrally located there are indeed lots of interested buyers. But the people of Baguio protested against it and battled their way until the national government heard our plea and then President Arroyo declared that there will be no developments to be done in the forested area of that GSIS controlled compound. A win for the trees and we hope that area shall remain as one of Baguio’s Watershed.
2. The Fight For 182 – Who could forget the battle between SM and the people of Baguio City to save 182 trees in danger of being cut or transferred which is maintained by experts to be detrimental to the life of the trees. The battle is not over but it did subside as the cutting of the trees were discontinued what happens next is still not clear. As of now this is a toss up, but i would like to see both parties to prove especially for the giant company that using their financial resources there is a better way to construct a building without harming the trees.
3. Looks Like There is Another Battle Brewing – i will leave it up to you our dear readers, please comment your thoughts below.
The battle to protect the trees, our water source and basically our life continues. Baguio City is not the City of Pines without its Pine Trees. The Cold weather and the fresh air is more important than fattening the pockets of a few. The question is are we ready to protect…life?
When i was in the elementary and after the earthquake i got the chance to travel outside of the Baguio City and whenever i return to Baguio i always read the Poem Trees by Joyce Kilmer, i never want to miss every line as the bus pass by every signage with part of the poem written on it. Although i do not see those signage now during my travels, the poem reminded me how important these trees are so allow me to share this poem: