Marine Protected Areas identified for Region 7

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Cebu City – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Central Visayas (DENR-7) has recently completed assessment of another 2,428 hectares of identified marine protected areas (MPAs) in Central Visayas, comprising 81 percent of 3,000 hectares targeted for identification this year.

In managing coastal and marine resources, DENR has adopted a sustainable and ecosystem-based approach under the Sustainable Coral Reef Ecosystem Management Program (SCREMP). The program observes proper management, protection and rehabilitation of over 3,031 hectares of coral reef areas in the Island of Saag and San Francisco.

Protection measures such as re-stocking, removal of underwater debris and fixing of damaged settlement materials were conducted to some identified degraded and severely damaged coral reef areas.

“We continue to try harder in our efforts to protect our coastal and marine ecosystems because once these coral reefs are damaged, they are less able to support the many creatures that inhabit them, which may cause more imminent damage or danger to the whole biodiversity,” said DENR in Central Visayas (DENR-7) Regional Director Dr. Isabelo R. Montejo.

He noted that these continuous human activities along crowded shorelines and marine-based pollution such as dynamite fishing and cyanide fishing are some of the causes of the degradation of the coral reefs.

Montejo urged the public to become more serious in taking good care of these marine resources.

In relation to this, ongoing programs for marine resources and protection are also implemented within the Tanon Strait Protected Seascape covering 19 municipalities in Cebu Province from Ginatilan to Daanbantayan including Bantayan Island.

Bohol province, on the other hand, covers the Talibon Group of Island Protected Landscape/ Seascape, and 13 municipalities from Negros Oriental Province from Sibulan to Vallehermoso

by Mhebeth D. Makilan & Mary Adeline R. Sabac
Published:  September 3, 2015

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