Philippine students graduating with a green thumb - Planet Ark Environmental Foundation

Philippine students graduating with a green thumb

By Jennifer McMillan  June 4th, 2019

The Philippines has put forward a bill that requires all students from elementary school to college to plant trees as a prerequisite to graduate.


The Philippines has put forward a bill that requires all students from elementary school to college to plant trees as a prerequisite to graduate.

The bill, known as the “Graduation Legacy for the Environment Act”, aims to promote and pursue environmental protection, biodiversity, climate change mitigation, poverty reduction and food security. The bill requires students to plant at least 10 trees before they are eligible to graduate.

The trees to be planted under the act will be in forests, mangroves and protected areas, ancestral domains, civil and military reservations, urban areas, inactive and abandoned mine sites and other land deemed suitable. There will be a focus on indigenous species appropriate to the location, climate and topography of the area. A number of agencies will assist in establishing nurseries, seedling production, site identification, monitoring and evaluating.

With over 12 million Philippine students graduating each year, it is estimated that 525 billion trees will be planted over the course of a single generation.

In Australia, thousands of schools around Australia participate in Schools Tree Day. Many see the value and importance of contact with nature for our health, wellbeing and development. It’s an opportunity to connect with others and for young environmentalists to put their hands in the earth for a better environment.

In 2017, research commissioned by Planet Ark and sponsored by Toyota Australia examined how prepared the next generation is to tackle the biggest global challenges, with climate change listed as the most concerning. The research found that outdoor learning helps grow problem-solving, grit, emotional intelligence and key educational outcomes. 


Positive Action

  • Get involved in Australia’s largest community tree-planting event, National Tree Day. With less than eight weeks to go we’re calling on all communities, schools, councils and businesses to help us green Australia by planting one million trees. Register here.


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Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.


By Jennifer McMillan

Jennifer joined the Planet Ark team to support the 2018 National Tree Day campaign. With a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science and Master’s degree in Journalism, she is passionate about science communication with a focus on multimedia storytelling. Prior to joining the Planet Ark team she travelled to Jordan as a foreign correspondent. She works as a vet nurse in her spare time!

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