In January 2007, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), at the request of the government of the Philippines, approved a $33.8 million loan, and a $9.0 million grant from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) it administers, for the Integrated Coastal Resources Management Project. The project covered 6 priority marine biodiversity corridors and ecosystems in the provinces of Cagayan, Cebu, Davao Oriental, Masbate, Romblon, Siquijor, and Zambales.
The project’s envisaged impact was enhanced coastal resources; its intended outcome was sustainable management of coastal resources. It had 4 planned outputs: (i) policy and legal framework for integrated coastal resource management (ICRM) rationalized, institutional capacities strengthened, and governance improved; (ii) ICRM institutionalized and functional at the local levels, and coastal ecosystems and resources in the threatened areas of biodiversity are protected and managed; (iii) alternative and supplementary livelihoods provided; and (iv) health and social conditions in the coastal communities improved.
For output 1: the project supported the development of an institutional framework for national and local government coordination on ICRM; the finalization of the ICRM national policy; operationalization of user fees and resource rents for marine protected areas (MPAs), mangroves, coral reefs, beaches, and foreshores; training of government staff on the various aspects of ICRM; and the establishment and/or strengthening of multisector local government ICRM organizations, including fisheries and aquatic resources management committees, bantay dagat (marine watch teams), and nongovernment organizations. Policy and institutional strengthening outputs exceeded targets: guided self-assessment by participating LGUs yielded eco-governance index that rose from 76% in year 4 to 91% in year 6, surpassing the 80% target.
For output 2: the project assisted 79 participating local government units (LGUs) in preparing ICRM plans and funded 411 subprojects. Mangrove rehabilitation and reforestation were completed on 3,094 hectares (ha) and 1,286, respectively; and watershed rehabilitation and reforestation on 4,355 ha and 6,250 ha, respectively. 75 MPAs covering 24,908 ha; no-take zones on 5,432 ha in the 6 priority biodiversity corridors and marine ecosystems; and 5 regional ICRM centers for biodiversity monitoring, research, training, and demonstration activities were established.
Under output 3: 322 enterprises, comprising 267 aquatic and land-based enterprises and 55 eco-tourism enterprises, were established. The achievement was less than the revised target because of delays in the preparation of ICRM plans, which determined the suitable types of enterprises to be established. The enterprises provided employment opportunities to 12,647 people, with 44% women. However, against a target 60%, only 26.4% of the 322 enterprises remained operational a year after they were established.
Under output 4: the project constructed social and environmental facilities in 13 LGUs, benefiting 59,326 households in 134 barangays, which exceeded the assumed target of 68 barangays at appraisal. Facilities built include the Carmen River flood control structure in Cebu, and the Boston water supply system and Cateel drainage system in Davao Oriental.
However, while several important targets were unverifiable, others were only partially achieved at project completion. Moreover, when this report was prepared, there was insufficient information to assess achievements at the outcome level, which are more realistically ready for assessment over the medium to long term. Because of these weaknesses, the project was rated less than successful by ADB’s Southeast Asia Department. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) was the executing agency, with implementation responsibilities assigned to DENR, the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, and LGUs.