Early this morning, June 24, Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSDS) led by Acting Executive Director Niño Rey C. Estoya participated in the first-ever urban edition of the 30th Pista Y Ang Kagueban (PYAK), with the theme: ” Urban Cooling Community tree Planting Towards addressing Climate Change & Urban Heat Islands”.
PCSDS, along with various representations from the private and public sectors, joined the tree-planting activities facilitated by City Environment and Natural Resources (CENRO) in Sienatel, Seminario De San Jose, Plaza Cuartel, SFP Logistics Command, and other barangays Bancao-bancao, Sta. Monica, Sicsican, and Irawan, in a collective bid to address the effects of Urban Heat Islands, or UHI, in the poblacion.
To mitigate the adverse effects of UHI through tree-planting activities and citizen participation at the core of the 31st PYAK, Puerto Princesa Cuty Mayor Lucilo R. Bayron said: “Siguro alam na nating lahat iyong tinatawag na urban heat island. Kapag ang concentration ng mga tao ay mas makapal sa mga urban areas, tapos siksikan iyong mga buildings, mga bahay, mga shops, mga konkretong kalsada, konkretong parking area, mga sidewalks; iyang lahat ay naga-asborb ng init, at iyong init na iyan nire-release sa gabi. Kaya nga sabi kanina parang pakiramdam natin mas maalinsangan sa gabi kaysa sa araw kasi dahan-dahan lumalabas iyong init doon sa mga nag-absorb na materials.”
PYAK, initially held in 1991, is a much-anticipated environmental celebration in PPC, harnessing citizen participation and support towards the protection and conservation of the city’s watersheds and forests, for which the City Government of Puerto Princesa has amassed worldwide recognition for its forestry programs and biodiversity conservation. Known for his vital role in jumpstarting the annual observance of PYAK as a former mayor of PPC, 3rd District Palawan Rep. Edward Hagedorn verbalized his gratitude for the solid commitment of Puerto Princesa in participating in the annual celebration of PYAK through the years: “Nakakatuwa po na through the years hindi po nagbago ang ating mga mamamayan sa pakikiisa sa programang ito. Alam niyo napakahalaga ang ginagawa nating ito, at ito ay magiging isang huwaran sa buong Pilipinas an gating pagkakaisa na magtanim upang mapangalagaan an gating kalikasan.”