Julie M. Aurelio -
The Philippines’ Tubbataha Reef was recently recognized by an international policy research body for the excellent care of the heritage site, hailed as a model in coral reef conservation.
The World Future Council gave one of two Silver Awards to the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park Act, the policy measure that created a protected marine sanctuary of almost 100,000 hectares of high-quality marine habitats containing three atolls and a large area of deep sea.
The Tubbataha Reef, which sits in the center of the Sulu Sea southeast of Palawan, is located within the Coral Triangle, a global focus for coral biological diversity.
It is home to a wide diversity of marine life and is a popular dive site.It was declared a World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (Unesco) in 1993.
It is administered as part of Cagayancillo, Palawan, and is under the protective management of the Department of National Defense.
In a statement, the World Future Council lauded the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park Act for ensuring the effective management of the Unesco World Heritage Site.