PIA Press Release
Thursday, January 12, 2012
DOST to undertake coral reef restoration in So Leyteby Aurora J. Casimpan
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Jan 12 (PIA) –- Coral reef restoration project is a program of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) which started in 2005 and expected to end in 2020 aimed at rehabilitating existing ecotourism areas in the country.
In Eastern Visayas, the Coral Cay Conservation (CCC) an international marine conservation organization reported that Southern Leyte is home to some of the most spectacular coral reefs in the world, often forming walls of color or small patches on sandy slopes waiting to be explored.
According to DOST regional director Engr. Edgardo Esperancilla, coral reefs in Southern Leyte are damaged by human activities such as household sewage, industrial wastage, and agricultural chemicals from lands washed to the sea.
Contributory factors to the destruction are dangerous fishing methods such as blast and dynamite fishing.
The coral reefs along Sogod Bay in Southern Leyte have been identified as one of the five tourism hubs that could be developed by both the government and the private sector.
Esperancilla said that DOST central office has allocated P5 million for coral reef restoration project in Southern Leyte as part of the agency’s interventions aimed to preserve marine ecosystem and boost ecotourism in the region.
The restoration project will be implemented by DOST-Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD) in coordination with Southern Leyte State University (SLSU) and dive resort owners. (PIA-8)