Pilar’s marine park shortlisted in search-A A +A
Saturday, November 19, 2011
A MARINE park in Pilar town in Camotes Islands has been named a finalist in the search for the best community-based marine conservation program worldwide.
Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia vowed last Thursday to support Pilar’s bid in the first global Solution Search contest.
Solution Search is an innovative online platform dedicated to finding proven community-based solutions for global environmental issues.
It is initiated by National Geographic and Rare, an organization using social marketing to advance conservation with local communities.
The search, dubbed Turning the Tide for Coastal Fisheries, sought applications from organizations worldwide that could demonstrate proven innovations to benefit coastal communities and marine ecosystems.
The Pilar Municipal Marine Park (PMMP) is located off Ponson Island, between Barangays Lower Poblacion and Villahermosa.
The PMMP was established under the EcoGov-2 Project, a resource conservation and management program funded by the US Agency for International Development.
The marine park is reportedly a habitat for manta rays and barracuda, among others.
The area used to be threatened by compressor fishing and commercial fishing in municipal waters before the community-based management scheme was implemented.
The National Geographic website said more than 100 entries were submitted from 48 countries.
The public can select or vote for the top three projects online (on www.solutionsearch.org). Voting ends on Dec. 24, 2011. Winners will be announced on Jan. 6, 2012.
The grand prize winner will get $20,000 while the two runners-up will get a $5,000-project grant.
“For too long, the conservation community has focused on problems, but there are a lot of working solutions in the remote parts of the planet,” said Rare president and chief executive officer Brett Jenks.
Pilar Vice Mayor Eufracio Maratas is urging Cebuanos to support PMMP by voting online.
In 2009, the PMMP was chosen “Most Outstanding Marine Protected Area” in the country.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 20, 2011.