3 marine-protected areas (MPAs) in Negros Occidental are among the 22 finalists in various categories of the Para El Mar Marine Protected Area Awards and Recognition 2019.
These include the Suyac Island Mangrove Forest (Ecopark) of Sagay Marine Reserve in Sagay City for Best Mangrove; Kabankalan-Himamaylan-Ilog-Integrated Coastal Area Management Council in southern Negros for Outstanding Network; and Campomanes-Ballo Marine Reserve and Sanctuary in Sipalay City for Outstanding Locally-Managed MPA.
In their Facebook posts on Saturday, the city governments of Sagay and Sipalay acknowledged their being shortlisted.
Para El Mar (For the Seas) is a biennial event that recognizes the best practices in the management of MPAs. It is presented by the Marine Protected Areas Support Network (MSN), a group of over 20 organizations coordinated by the Marine Environment and Resources Foundation Inc., the support foundation of the University of the Philippines (UP) Marine Science Institute.
The presentation and judging of finalists will be on October 22 and 23 at the SEAMEO Innotech headquarters in Diliman, Quezon City.
The winners will be awarded also on October 23 at the Bahay ng Alumni, UP Diliman, Quezon City.
In the Best Mangrove Award, Sagay City’s Suyac Island is competing with Bongsanglay Natural Park in Batuan, Masbate; Del Carmen Mangrove Site in Siargao Island, Surigao del Norte; and Silonay Mangrove Conservation and Ecopark in Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro.
Aside from Negros Occidental’s entry, also vying for Outstanding Network are Gingoog Bay Alliance and Macajalar Bay Development Alliance, both of Misamis Oriental.
Competing for Outstanding National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) Marine Protected Area are Apo Island Protected Landscape and Seascape in Negros Oriental; Batanes Protected Landscape and Seascape in Batanes; Hundred Islands National Park in Pangasinan; Palaui Island Protected Landscape and Seascape in Cagayan; and Siargao Islands Protected Landscape and Seascape in Surigao del Norte.
Sipalay City’s Campomanes-Ballo Marine Reserve is in the final roster for Outstanding Locally-Managed MPA with Agay-Ayan and Caloco Marine Sanctuaries in Tinambac, Camarines Sur; Aquino-Ondoy Marine Fish Sanctuary and Fishery Reserve in Ibajay, Aklan; Bato-Tagaytay Reef Fish Sanctuary in Sta. Cruz, Davao Del Sur; Buntod Reef Marine Sanctuary in Masbate City; Igang Bay Marine Sanctuary in Nueva Valencia, Guimaras; Ranzo Fish Sanctuary in Pinamalayan, Oriental Mindoro; San Pablo De Bauan Mpa and Fishery Reserve in Bauan, Batangas; Siete Pecados Marine Park in Coron, Palawan; and Tonggusung-Maruwa Fish Sanctuary in Simunul, Tawi-Tawi. (PNA)