Toyota leads the way with strong support for carbon neutrality

Volunteers led by Toyota Motor Philippines Corp (TMP) recently headed to the coast of Lian, Batangas for a mangrove-planting activity as part of the “All-Toyota Green Wave Project” (Green Wave), TMP’s expansive and multisectoral effort towards carbon neutrality and biodiversity conservation within its network amidst the severe threat of global climate change.

In observance of Earth Month, TMP gathered over 50 volunteers from its own workforce, parent company, subsidiaries, the Philippine National Police, and the local government unit. The group, spearheaded by TMP president Atsuhiro Okamoto, planted 5,000 mangrove propagules at Sitio Sulok, aiming to reforest a coastline that is part of the Verde Island Passage, considered the world’s “center of the center” of marine shore fish biodiversity.

“TMP’s multi-pathway approach to carbon neutrality goes back to Toyota’s commitments announced in 2015 under the global ‘Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050 (TEC 205).’ Under this, Toyota has outlined the company’s targets to achieve zero CO2 emissions and net positive environmental impact by 2050,” Okamoto said.

“Today, we take time away from our usual workplace to be in harmony with nature, and push carbon neutrality beyond the emission reduction efforts TMP has at its manufacturing plant and with the Toyota electrified vehicles,” he added.

Recognizing the Verde Island Passage’s importance as the planet’s marine frontier and the call for climate mitigation measures, TMP has initially adopted since 2020 a 10-hectare mangrove plantation at Barangay Binubusan in Lian. This adoption is under the National Greening Program (NGP), the Department of Environment and Natural Resources nationwide reforestation program aimed at “involving and enhancing private sector participation towards carbon neutrality.”

In collaboration with Lian’s Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office (Menro) and fisherfolk associations, TMP has planted 20,000 mangrove propagules and is nearing project completion.

According to Lian Menro head Alvin Jonson, the project’s success is linked to the mangroves’ survival and maturity rate as the reforested areas are expected to later contribute to the livelihood of fisherfolk and serve as a natural barrier to protect nearby communities from calamities such as storm surges.

In expanding the Green Wave to other ecological systems, TMP recently inked its partnership with DENR Region IV-A Calabarzon (Cavite-Laguna-Batangas-Rizal-Quezon) and respective LGUs to adopt new NGP sites: an 8-hectare mangrove plantation in Calatagan, Batangas, and a 50-hectare upland forest block in Siniloan, Laguna. TMP has four active NGP sites with 108 hectares, including the other two in Lian, Batangas (10 ha), and Maragondon, Cavite (40 ha).