Commitment forged to conserve natural resources in El Nido

Published April 4, 2018, 10:00 PM

by Mario Casayuran and Vanne Elaine Terrazola

By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz

Various sectors have signed a renewal of commitment to conserve the natural resources of El Nido in Palawan and work towards its sustainability as one of the country’s most prized tourism destinations.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), through El Nido-Taytay Managed Resource Protected Area (ENTMRPA) Superintendent Alexander Mancio and El Nido Mayor Nieves Rosento, led the signing of renewal of commitment for the conservation of El Nido.

“It is refreshing to see this level of commitment for the protection of our environment coming from our stakeholders,” DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu said.

“This covenant that our officials signed, together with the local government, non-government organizations, and people’s organizations, is the right step toward achieving sustainability in El Nido, one of the most beautiful and most biodiverse ecotourism destinations in the Philippines,” he added.

Signing the agreement with Mancio and Rosento were Malampaya Foundation, Inc. (MFI) president Belinda Racela, Barangay Bucana Chairman Aracel Bacolod, Barangay Buena Suerte Chairman Ricky Ballena, and people’s organizations PagkakaisaPagtutulungan Kalikasan Pakaingatan Ecotourism Service Cooperative (PPKPESC) of Brgy. Buena Suerte, and Samahan ng NagkakaisangMagsasaka, Mangingisda, at Kababaihan Tungo sa Maunlad na Kinabukasan ng Pamayanan (SANMKAP) of Brgy. Bucana.

PPKPESC was represented by its chairman, Policarpio Ramos Jr., while SANMKAP was led by its president, PlenieCandelario.

“This partnership aims to implement and sustain ecotourism and other livelihood activities for the people of El Nido. MFI will train and provide livelihood programs for the people, while our local officials, together with the local government, will support them,” Cimatu said.

The MFI provides livelihood and ecotourism training through its two flagship programs, the Barangay Aquatic Habitat and Underwater Regeneration Assistance (BAHURA), and the Livelihood Alternatives and Mariculture-Based Assistance Program (LAMBAT).

The BAHURA program helps local communities implement coastal resource management plans as well as environment-friendly alternative livelihood.