The Wetlands – an unlikely savior in the fight against climate change
Last February 2, 2023 marked the global celebration of World Wetlands Day. Not may people realize the importance of the wetlands in maintaining our global ecology, much less its key role in arresting the agressive advance of climate change.
35% of the world’s wetlands have disappeared in the last 50 years–which is a shame, as healthy wetlands are highly efficient in capturing ambient carbon, storing it first in their biomass and then in their sediments – and they do it at a rate 10-20 times greater than temperate or boreal forests.
Distressing is also the fact that when wetlands are mowed down, they ot only do they stop absorbing carbon, but they also release their stores back into the
atmosphere, increasing greenhouse gases.
The Katunggan Eco Park–a mangrove sanctuary
Last February 9, 2023, the Metro Iloilo Water District–headed by its very own Chairperson of the Board herself, Ms. Rebecca Maravilla–and with permission and cooperation with the LGU Leganes and Leganes MENRO, held a tree planting activity at the Leganes Katunggan Eco Park.
The Katunggan Eco Park was formerly an abandoned fishing pond–one of many in Leganes, until the Leganes LGU saw fit to use it as a rallying ground for environmentalism, all while involving and benefitting the locals around the area.
The Katunggan Eco Park was identified as a Center of Learning for capacity building of mangrove conservation practitioners on revsersion of abandoned ponds, green engineering and partnerships, as evidenced by their very active partnerships with environmental organizations from Germany, UK and Japan.
As a mater of distinction, its local chief MENRO officer, Mr. Wilson Batisalon, has received international honoraries from the Walt Disney Conservation Hero program.
Aside from its key role as a mangrove preserve, the eco park projects serves to financially benefit the local community directly with adjunct projects that also, in turn, help with the expansion and maintenance of the Katungaan Eco Park.
Locals, school students, teachers, and the Leganes LGU are oriented on the ecology, biology, and management of the eco-park.
Amidst the intimidating magnitude of global climate change, many organizations like the MIWD and the LGU Leganes stand to champion the cause of tipping the scale back towards ecological balance, one mangrove tree at a time.