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Environmental Analysis USAID/Philippines Strategy for 2005-2009

by Rose Hessmiller last modified Jan 10, 2013 10:50 AM Development Alternatives, Inc. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted material herein is distributed without profit or payment for non-profit research and educational purposes only.

ANE - 118/119 Report - Philippines EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Introduction and Background The Philippines once possessed some of the richest biological diversity in the world. However, the country has undergone a catastrophic degradation of its natural resource base, resulting in one of the lowest rates of per capita forest cover in the tropics and the collapse of much of the country’s mangrove and coral reef ecosystems. Indeed, the mega diversity of the Philippine tropical forests and marine and coastal resources is threatened and highly at risk. The main direct cause of this degradation has been over-exploitation and destruction of forest and coastal resources. Contributing factors include greed, rapid population growth, conversion of land to other uses, urbanization, pollution, and sedimentation from extensive land-based erosion. Although some progress has been made, extensive donor and Government of the Republic of the Philippines’ (GRP) efforts to reverse these trends have not succeeded. Long-term improvements in resource management and protection of biodiversity will require successful parallel efforts by GRP and donors to address such critical development challenges as: (a) slowing the country’s population growth rate; (b) creating viable economic alternatives for poor families that currently depend upon the destructive exploitation of forest and coastal resources to survive; (c) developing sustained sources of financing for investment in improved environmental management; and (d) strengthening the institutional capability to enforce environmental laws. Prepared in 2004.

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