People are the cause and the solution. According to Roquelito Mancao, Director for Technical Operations of RARE Philippines, the over-riding goal of coastal and fisheries management is the long-term sustainable use of the coastal and fisheries resources.
“If current exploitation continues, fish will be gone by 2048,” he warned. He mentioned that the country has a 36-kilogram per year per capita consumption of fish. About 61.6 million of the country’s 110 million population depend on fish for protein. This equates to 2.218 billion kilograms of fish that the country needs annually based on per capita consumption.
The Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP) partnered with RARE, an international conservation organization to strengthen information and awareness activities as well as enhance integrated coastal management and policies in targeted PRDP-Global Environment Facility (PRDP-GEF) sites.
RARE will facilitate the conduct of a series of workshops to assist targeted GEF sites in preparing their Integrated Coastal and Fisheries Resource Management (ICFRM) cum Sustainability Plan, which will serve as the operational guideline of the LGU to effectively implement their coastal and fishery resource management program seriously. Mancao said that the ICFRM will also help them prioritize issues that need to be addressed as well as areas where they should concentrate their investments in terms of conservation, protection and sustainable use of resources. In addition, it will show participatory and accountable governance, see where their investments go, track progress and adjust what needs to be addressed in the plan.