Mt. Mantalingahan Protected Landscape
Mt. Mantalingahan Protected Landscape has been formally gazetted as protected area by virtue of a presidential proclamation by Her Excellency Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on June 23, 2009.
After several years of scientific studies, strong partnerships, participatory and consultative approaches on protected area gazettement, Mt. Mantalingahan finally received the recognition and protection that it deserves by virtue of Presidential Proclamation 1815 signed on June 23, 2009, under the category of protected landscape. The proclamation of Mt. Mantalingahan Protected Landscape (MMPL) is a very important step in ensuring the well-being, not only of the rich biological resources, but more importantly, the well-being of the people of Palawan.
Mt. Mantalingahan is home to indigenous Palaw’ans and is the highest peak along the central spine of mountains in southern Palawan. The new protected area is within the territorial jurisdiction of Bataraza, Brooke’s Point, Quezon, Rizal and Sofronio Espanola. This largely forested mountain range is critical for providing various ecosystem services that benefits the local communities with an estimated Total Economic Value (TEV) of US$5.5Billion. These ecosystems services include water, soil conservation, flood control, carbon sequestration, non-timber forest products and the high potential of waterfalls, caves and other potential areas for tourism. The watersheds within MMPL are extremely valuable to the lowland agricultural economy in the area.
The MMPL also adds to the country’s list of protected areas, and moves the Philippines closer to our 2010 target for the Convention of Biological Diversity. It is of high biodiversity importance, being one of the 17 terrestrial key biodiversity areas and one of 11 important bird areas in Palawan, as well as one of only ten sites of the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) in the Philippines. With a total area of 120,457 hectares, it is so far the largest terrestrial protected area in Palawan.