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Environment Magazine September/October 2008

 

January-February 2013

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The Importance of Multilevel and Multidimensional Approaches to Integrated Resources Management: A Case Study of a Philippines Watershed

In the Philippines, watersheds are one of the country's key sources of natural resources capital, and serve as home to more than 20 million people, which is more than 25% of the total population.1 Forest and upland ecosystems support agriculture and provide timber and nontimber forest products totalling an estimated $100 million in net benefits annually. Watersheds and river systems also support nature-based tourism and various hydro and geothermal power facilities that supply at least 35% of the nation's energy needs. But the country's natural capital is under extreme stress. The remaining natural resources, including terrestrial biodiversity, have been depleted to a point where further destruction and degradation would hinder economic growth and human development.

Pepito R. Fernandez, Jr. is an associate professor at the University of the Philippines Visayas. He is a founding member and chairman of the Watershed Academic Consortium, an action-oriented partnership of five universities/colleges for integrated watershed management and sustainable development in the Visayas Region, Philippines. His research interests include natural resources management, sustainable development, and environmental governance.

Gregory Benjamin M. Luz is project leader of the Canadian Urban Institute's (CUI) Metro Iloilo-Guimaras Sustainable Bioregion Initiative (MIG-SBI).

Rodelio F. Subade is Professor in Economics at the University of the Philippines Visayas (UPV) and has the rank of UP Scientist.

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