|1. No delineation of the boundaries of the protected areas |
This is the single most important policy implementation gap. The absence of clear boundaries is the most serious issue in the management of protected areas and wildlife protection. As a consequence, encroachments and human settlements go on unabated, resulting in continued degradation of the forest and other flora and fauna in the protected areas. This is a catalytic intervention that will pave the way to the resolution of numerous issues hounding protected areas, among others, enforcement, land tenure, resource use, and land use/sea use management.
– Budget must be immediately set aside for the immediate delineation with visible boundaries on the ground.
– The boundary monuments must be very visible and spaced about 200 meters apart.
– The boundary monuments must not be less than 15 feet in height (exposed) to make it clearly visible from afar. Employment of the local communities to fabricate these will also co-opt them to the cause of protecting the PA. Shredded or ground non-biodegradable products from solid wastes (plastics, tetra-packs, etc) can be used as additional aggregates for the fabrication of the boundary monuments.
– The surrounding communities may be contracted to fabricate these concrete monuments with the proper guidance and supervision for quality control and designation of the points where the same are to be erected.
– In the process, a resource inventory of the flora and fauna may also be done, in cooperation with the academe and the local stakeholders. This will not only develop the baseline data of the flora and fauna in the area, it will also heighten the awareness of the local community on the biodiversity values of the protected area.
|Prepare land use management plan for the protected areas where even titled lands must conform to this plan. While ownership may be vested in the title owner, the use may be restricted as part of the police powers of the State to preserve and protect these areas. The laws and activities of man follow the laws of Nature. Clarify the function and legality of tax declaration in protected areas by a clear policy and by, if necessary, legal action and clarification in a Court of Law.|
|Clarify the role of the group. It should serve only as an advisory body, and not a ‘management’ body. For example, the preparation of the land use management plan is a highly technical issue that cannot be done by a highly political. It should, therefore, be prepared following protected area management principles. We can be consulted and inputs provided in small focus groups, but never as an entire body.|