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Kalinangan Refereed Journal

Volume no. 20 | 2014/6
Issue no. 1


Title
A BIODIVERSITY ASSESSMENT TOWARDS ESTABLISHING A SPECIAL MARINE PROTECTED AREA: A CASE STUDY OF SELECTED JETTY AREAS IN BATANGAS BAY
Author
MENDOZA, NOEL DELA CRUZ, Ph.D.
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Abstract
This study sought to identify fish and coral biodiversity in three (3) selected jetties, namely AG&P, First Gas Power Corporation and Kepco Ilijan Corporation and compare it with a declared Marine Protected Area (MPA) of Batangas City, the Pulong Bato Fish Refuge and Sanctuary all located in Batangas Bay in order to determine if fish and corals exist and if it is strategic to enhance fisheries in the area. The study also sought to determine the acceptability of the community, LGUs and the company if their Jetties will be declared as Special Marine Protected Areas. Quantitative method using Detailed Coral Reef Habitat Survey and Fish Visual Census to gather biophysical information for all of the selected sites for comparison were used in this study. Qualitative method of research using content analysis was also used through in-depth interview with selected five (5) Key Informants and Focus Group Discussions with the three (3) Communities near the study sites. Results of the assessment of the jetty areas of AG&P, First Gas Power Corporation and Kepco Ilijan Corporation (KEILCO), revealed that there are recruits of biodiversity in the three (3) selected sites despite the fact that during construction of the said jetties, biodiversity was totally wiped out of the area. Study revealed that in all the jetty areas they all fall under a “fair” coral cover, same as with the MPA Pulong Bato Fish Refuge and Sanctuary. The long year’s existence of these jetties even with regular activities conducted by the companies and the fisher folks resulted to recruits of fish and coral reefs. Among the three jetties AG&P has the longest jetty existence, they also have the highest percentage of hard coral cover with 34 percent followed by KEILCO with 30 percent and First Gas Power Corporation with 25 percent. These recruit of fish and corals diversity attract nearby fisher folks to do their business on these jetty areas. The host community, the Local Government Units and the company sees positive effect of declaring jetty areas as Special Marine Protected Areas (SMPA); a winwin solution is recommended in resolving issues that may arise between to the host community and the company regards fishing jetty relative to security. Declaring jetty areas as Special Marine Protected Areas will be a win-win solution for the LGU, the company and the nearby community fisher folks, they can become co-equal managers of the area and there will be harmony in resource use.
Keywords
Biodiversity, Fish and Coral Diversity, Jetty Areas, Marine Protected Areas, FGPC, AG&P, KEILCO
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