Manila Times. Philippines President Arroyo on Saturday ordered the Department of Energy to widen the propagation of jatropha plants not only in military camps but in all available public lands. The President had earlier ordered the conversion of idle lands in military camps into plantations for jatropha.
The President asked Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla to coordinate with the local government units and even private agencies by urging them to plant more Jatropha trees in their unused lands.
“Jatropha is the best alternative fuel and we need to propagate it,” she pointed out, adding that Jatropha is easy to plant and grow even without fertilizer.
She congratulated the Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) chief, Maj. Gen. Romeo Tolentino, and his men for helping the government in its campaign to ease the country’s dependence on imported crude oil.
The Nolcom is the first military command to comply with the President’s order to plant Jatropha trees in military camps.
Lotilla informed the President that the country needs at least 100 to 200 hectares of jatropha plantations to be able to start production of jatropha diesel.