As part of its institutional program, “One with the Environment” FirstBank will be selling a DVD entitled “Sow and Conserve with FirstBank” to benefit Amigos de El Yunque, a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the public about the importance of protecting and preserving that rainforest, considered a natural treasure.
The initiative is part of the bank’s environmentally friendly agenda, which includes a fourth edition of “Green Summer,” a reforestation tour through which it distributes 6,600 native trees at stops at 22 of its branches throughout the island. The tour ends July 27.
Alexis Molinares, renowned ecologist and collaborator on this project, will be guiding participants on the right type of tree to plant in their homes, according to the terrain and the available space, how to plant it properly and subsequent care and maintenance.
“It is important to promote reforestation as a tool for the development of forests,” said Molinares, explaining that Puerto Rico’s geography changed dramatically in the centuries after the Spanish conquest, when the island had a bit more than 2 million acres of forested terrain.
Intensive agriculture in the early centuries left the island with about 144,000 acres of forests by 1947, or 6 percent of the territory, the lowest number in its history. Reforestation has multiple benefits: improved air quality, controls soil erosion; filters pollutants, reduces the amount of carbon dioxide, and releases oxygen to the environment
The next stops of the “Green Summer” tour are: Ponce Centro branch (June 20), Cayey branch (June 21), Las Catalinas branch, (June 22), San Francisco branch, (June 27), El Señorial branch (June 28) and Trujillo Alto branch (June 29), with more dates throughout July.