Development of an Environmental Awareness Program on Climate Change and Biodiversity Conservation for Lapus-Lapus Integrated Marine Protected Area, Municipality of Dumangas, Iloilo Province, Western Visayas Philippines

Prof. Eric Dela Vega


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Prof. Eric Dela Vega

The coastal town of Dumangas is highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change resulting to biodiversity loss. Coupled with unsustainable coastal resource utilization they greatly affected the fishing-based livelihood of the community. The local government in partnership with an academic institution -ISAT U and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and other NGOs such as ZSL and GIZ had recently embarked on the enhancement and institutionalization of the Lapus Lapus Integrated Marine Protected Area (LLIMPA). The LLIMPA covers a rich coastal marine resources, mangrove forest and rehabilitated abandoned fishponds to mangrove forest by the DENR. However, there are still a lot of issues such as low awareness on the impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss, unsustainable utilization and community cooperation, as well as illegal fishing and poaching in the area. The LGU and ISAT University through their environmental science course can develop an environmental awareness program to heighten the people’s consciousness and at the same time increase the support and participation of the community to the LGU inititiave on LLIMPA.
In order to increase the awareness of the locals, the proposed action is to develop an environmental program using social marketing techniques and communication strategies. With the pandemic restrictions – both digital and printed platforms will be utilized. Currently, Dumangas is in partnership with the DENR, ZSL and GIZ in the implementation of the ProCoast project. The project supported the enhancement of the LLIMPA and capacity development of local stakeholders. The funds can further support the expansion of the environmental program and fund the social marketing and communication strategies. This can be achieved through the development of information materials (web ready/digital platforms/printed), and other effective communications strategies with the partnership of ISAT U to expand their environmental science course involving students and faculty members. The university can provide manpower and expertise to work on the program. ZSL and GIZ including government agencies will further provide technical inputs in the design of the program and materials. While Dumangas direct investments will support the LLIMPA establishment and operations.

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