GCash, the leading digital mobile wallet in the country, together with the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc., (RAFI), is planting 550,000 mangrove trees in Tañon Strait in Cebu to help the environment and mitigate the effects of natural disasters in the province. Cebu was one of the provinces to endure the brunt of Typhoon Odette.
Mangroves help build more disaster-resilient communities as they protect coastlines by decreasing the risk of flooding and erosion. Compared to planting upland trees, mangroves are capable of high carbon sequestration, also known as “blue carbon” which helps reduce the amount of carbon dioxide to minimize the effects of climate change. Moreover, mangroves promote the conservation of fishing breeding areas and support the livelihood of farmer and mangrove-planting communities.
“We’ve seen the impact of natural calamities in the vulnerable communities in the country. At GCash, we continue to uphold our commitment to environmental conservation and sustainability together with our partners. We are grateful to have found a partner in the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. Together we will work toward making our coastlines less vulnerable to extreme weather events and help build more sustainable and disaster-resilient communities in the future,” said Martha Sazon, President and CEO of GCash.
The planting period of these mangroves will start in the second and third quarters of 2022. Maintenance activities will last until 2024 to ensure a high survival rate of the planted mangrove seedlings.
This initiative is a part of GCash’s sustainability efforts under GForest, its environmental sustainability feature on the app.
GCash users can help plant mangrove trees anytime, anywhere. With GForest, they can do so virtually by collecting green energy points by reducing their footprint whenever they use the various cashless services of GCash, such as Send Money, Pay Bills, or Bank Transfer on the app. Users can also earn points and further decrease their carbon footprint every time they walk if they enable GCash to access their health app or fitness tracker.
Since GForest’s launch in 2019, more than 10 million users have joined the cause. As of December 19, 2021, a total of 1,060,000 trees have been planted virtually by GForest users, 1 million of which have been converted to actual trees planted in various locations.
Prior to the planting of mangroves in 2022, GCash and RAFI have partnered to conduct other tree-planting projects in Cebu, as well as tree-growing orientations and planting trainings for 150 farmers. That initiative aims to plant 1.3 million trees this year.
Aside from Cebu in Visayas, GCash has also facilitated several tree-planting projects with other partners in Luzon and Mindanao.
With its various digital products and services, particularly GForest, GCash continues to help encourage its users to adopt a greener lifestyle and help build a sustainable future – one mangrove at a time.
For more information, visit www.gcash.com.