Midterm Evaluation Expanding and Diversifying the National System of Terrestial Protected Areas in the Philippines

Report Cover Image
Evaluation Plan:
2012-2018, Philippines
Evaluation Type:
Mid Term Project
Planned End Date:
04/2014
Completion Date:
04/2014
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
5,000
Introduction: NewCAPP and the MTE. Expanding and Diversifying the National System of Terrestrial Protected Areas in the Philippines Project (now known as New Conservation Areas in the Philippines Project or NewCAPP) is a five-year project intended to establish new management regimes for the conservation of terrestrial areas in Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs) in the Philippines. This proceeds from the recognition that despite its critical importance to global environmental sustainability, the Philippine floral and faunal diversity is faced with several threats. The primary government response is the establishment of the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) encompassing more than 200 PAs covering more than 5.4M has of land and water bodies. The NIPAS, however, is faced with three main barriers: (1) small coverage of PAs and underrepresentation of Mindoro, Greater Luzon, Greater Mindanao, Greater Negros Panay and Greater Sulu in the PA system; (2) limited capacities of DENR-PAWB and PAMBs for PA management; and, (3) limited financial sustainability owing to inadequate financial planning, budgetary management and revenue generation. NewCAPP was thus designed to pilot new conservation areas that shall be outside the NIPAS but still part of the national protected area (PA) system. It has a three-pronged approach (outcomes): (1) establishing and/or enhancing alternatives/models on the ground; (2) capacitating key actors to enhance the management of these alternatives/models, and thereby also benefiting the managers of NIPAS sites in various parts of the country; and, (3) providing a policy basis for the existence, recognition and sustained support for ? thus, mainstreaming - these models and the existing NIPAS sites. The Project is being implemented in the following pilot sites: (1) Balbalan-Balbalasang National Park (ICCA); (2) Zambales Mountains (ICCA, and LGU-LCA in Mangatarem and Mt. Tapulao); (3) Mts. Irid Angelo and Binuang (ICCA); (4) Mts. Iglit Baco National Park (ICCA); (5) Polilio group of Islands (LGU-LCA); (6) Nug as Lantoy (LGU-LCA); (7) Mt. Nacolod (LGU-LCA); (8) Mt. Hilong-hilong (ICCA); (9) Mt. Kalatungan (ICCA); and, (10) Tawi-tawi Island (LGU-LCA). Funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources ? Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (DENR-PAWB) as Executing Partner, the project commenced in September 2010 and will end in September 2014. This is the Mid-term Evaluation (MTE) report of NewCAPP, to determine the project?s progress towards achieving its target outcomes. It also aims to highlight issues requiring decisions and actions, and present initial lessons learned about project design, implementation and management. It covers the first two-and-a-half years of project implementation, specifically from September 2010 until June 2013.

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Title Midterm Evaluation Expanding and Diversifying the National System of Terrestial Protected Areas in the Philippines
Atlas Project Number: 00071662
Evaluation Plan: 2012-2018, Philippines
Evaluation Type: Mid Term Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 04/2014
Planned End Date: 04/2014
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Others
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Output 1.3. Solutions developed at national and sub-national levels for sustainable management of natural resources, ecosystem services, chemicals and waste
Evaluation Budget(US $): 5,000
Source of Funding: Project funds
Joint Programme: No
Mandatory Evaluation: Yes
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Rodolfo Ferdinand N. Quicho, Jr. Attorney
Minerva Gonzales Ms.
GEF Evaluation: Yes
Evaluation Type:
Focal Area: Biodiversity
Project Type: EA
GEF Phase: GEF-4
PIMS Number: 3530
Key Stakeholders: DENR-PAWB, NCIP, DENR Regional Offices, LGUs, NGOs
Countries: PHILIPPINES
Lessons
Findings
Recommendations
1 Focus on the qualitative gains of the Project As noted under Outcome 1, the Project fell short of its quantitative target of 400,000 ha pilot sites. Especially considering the shortened Project life, it will be unlikely that the target will be met in the remainder of the Project timeline. On the other hand, it is noted that the Project is doing good progress in establishing the sites and mainstreaming the management modalities that it advocates. ICCA, for instance, has taken a big leap from virtual oblivion in the Philippines to being a battle cry for many IP communities. The IP and CSO partners explicitly credit and than the Project for this achievement. The LCAs are also gaining ground and is expected to move faster in the second half of implementation. As expressed by UNDP?s Ms. Supetran, the meat of the Project is to make a case for these modalities that they may be mainstreamed in policy and practice. In this respect, the Project is very likely to succeed. Besides, the 133,241 ha currently being worked on, is already sizeable. If any, the 400,000 ha may be considered as too ?ambitious? a target considering that the Project is intended for piloting. It is, thus, recommended that the UNDP and the GEF as well as the Project redefine the target of 400,000 ha under Output 1.2 as either the maximum area to be covered, or adopt the submission of the PMU to treat the 400,000 ha as merely the total landscape within which the Project shall pilot the modalities. Meanwhile, the DENR, the DILG and the NCIP are invited to take advantage of the momentum of this groundbreaking Project, and cooperatively replicate and expand the coverage of the models so as to meet the 400,000 ha target herein (and hopefully larger) beyond the Project life. This should be part of their targets under their respective departmental plans.
2 Chart the termination of project involvement in sites With the shortened time of the project for on-site work, it is necessary that the project focus on closing work in the areas. As can be understood from the results of on-site data gathering, the local stakeholders are uncertain as to how the project will end in their respective areas. Nevertheless, it appears that for many, the completion of the local plans is sufficient as this would leave or provide a platform for future actions and interventions. It is best for the project to chart with stakeholders the end term of the interventions in each area, and plan out how support can be continuously streamed down to them beyond the project. A sustainability plan should be incorporated in the process. Also an essential component of these plans should address the strong clamor of local stakeholders, especially the IPs/ICCs, for a clear trickle down of benefits of community-driven natural resource management in terms of household income and the well-being of individual community members by including interventions for livelihood support to enable them to enjoy the economic consequences of their conservation work.
3 Help ensure community benefits for sustainability of conservation efforts Among the expectations of local communities, particularly IPs/ICCs that have been involved in the ICCA campaign of the Project is obtaining benefits from the initiative, not necessarily in a direct manner but more so as a product of the recognition of ICCAs. For instance, the PES that is already seeing light for the MILALITTRA in Mt. Kalatungan is starting to raise hopes for many other IP communities. In this regard, it is recommended that community benefits be intentionally included in the Project?s disengagement plans with communities over and above the funds that may be raised for PA management. The PAWB/BMB and UNDP are also urged to include this aspect in successor biodiversity conservation initiatives.
4 Continue and strengthen policy work The Project has indeed done a lot with its policy work. What needs to be worked on, however, is the policy articulation of the initiatives of the Project so as to identify their place in the whole natural resource management schema of the DENR. This might also entail working with other NGAs to effectively place mainstream these modalities in their (other agencies?) policy frameworks. For instance, should it be found that LCAs can be treated under the Wildlife Conservation Act management scheme, then, it should be so articulated in policy terms and mainstreamed into the DENR and DILG policies. Necessarily, the institutional and financing mechanisms for their continued management should be expressed. Similarly, ICCA may well be expressed in policy terms that apply not only within the DENR but also within the framework of the NCIP. The vehicle/s for such policy mainstreaming should also be defined, taking heed of the need to ensure national support to ICCAs and LCAs, exploring possibilities not only within the administrative structure, but outside thereof. For instance, USec. Gerochi suggests that these modalities be inputted in the national land use bill. A concrete option of course is the ICCA bill of Rep. Teddy Baguilat. For his part, Sec. Acosta suggests that LCAs and ICCAs be included as among the legacies of the present dispensation, through an Executive Order. It would be worthwhile for the Project to identify sponsors that can facilitate the issuance of an Executive Order. Incidentally, the Project can also help LGUs in developing their local ordinances and plans that include LCAs in particular and biodiversity conservation in general. In this regard the Project should collaborate strongly with DILG, along with the LGU leagues to help campaign for the recognition of LCAs and ICCAs by local governments as well as in advancing the ideas of these new management modalities for national policy development. Since it has already shown some promise in the area of PES, the Project might as well design a policy on PES. Such policy is expected to benefit not only the Project sites but many other poor communities (not only IPs/ICCs) that protect and conserve the natural resources on which they depend. Indeed, the policy environment may not be as friendly to the Project?s advocacy as we may want it to be. However, being a project, its best contribution under the circumstances is to provide a basis for the eventual adoption of its models into the policy realm. It is the expected role of the concerned actors within the DENR, particularly the PAWB, to elevate these policy recommendations into draft policy instruments and lobby within the DENR and the office of the President for their adoption. Ultimately, of course, the arena for a more permanent adoption of these modalities shall be the Philippine Congress, where the DENR is expected to lobby with a united stand.
5 Continue working on and with NCIP The evaluator recognizes the efforts that have been exerted by the Project in involving the NCIP in the Project in a profound manner. The NCIP, on the other hand, is apparently constrained by its low absorptive capacity, both in terms of finances and human resources. This difficulty is understandably beyond the Project. Despite that, however, the NCIP is undeniably an important, if not indispensable, player particularly on matters concerning ICCAs. Getting the NCIP into the ballgame thus remains a challenge for the Project. What might work for the Project is the new development in the internal management of the NCIP. The NCIP now has a new Chairwoman and Executive Director. It is also noted that the new NCIP management has opened its doors to partnerships with projects and programs of other NGAs and CSOs affective and involving IPs, by initiating a series of dialogues with them. The evaluator is cognizant of the Project?s laudable participation in this initiative. This is indeed a good ?new start? for the Project, and thus must be pursued. The purpose of this exercise may no longer be for the Project itself but for future initiatives along the lines of ICCAs, as certainly the ICCA initiative ought to be carried on by the DENR-PAWB/BMB beyond the lifetime of the Project or through other future projects. An expected substantive aspect of the deliberation with the NCIP is the synergy between the ICCA approach of the Project?s PA management modality with the AD management approach of the NCIP as mandated by the IPRA. But then again, there is recognition that partnership-building with the NCIP ? and with other relevant NGAs for that matter ? is bigger than the Project. It is a systemic challenge. Therefore, it is the DENR that has to pick up the real challenge of building this institutional relationship with the NCIP. Indeed, approaching this matter from an institutional perspective will not only benefit the Project and its fruits but all other initiatives of the DENR where NCIP concerns have to be taken into consideration. The DENR should thus exert efforts to put an appropriate policy instrument in place, e.g., a MOA with the NCIP, or a policy directive if deemed needed, to effect this partnership. Meanwhile, the NCIP is urged to continuously engage the Project on ICCA discussions. As an unsolicited input, the ICCA may be viewed as a component that can strengthen AD management by IPs/ICCs. It is noted that initiatives of this kind fall within the FPIC rules of the NCIP, the latest of which is NCIP Administrative Order No. 3, s. 2012. That this process is at the heart of the ongoing discussion of the NCIP with various initiatives right now is appreciated. It is hoped that the FPIC process will be made cognizant of the developmental nature of the ICCA approach, and make the process more manageable for IPs/ICCs. Better yet, the ADSDPP process may be made cognizant of ICCA (its elements) as a strategy for enriching ADSDPPs.
6 Build on the KAP Study and Develop an IEC Plan With the KAP done, the Project can now get down to preparing a detailed communication plan. What is commendable with the KAP is that it identifies the target audiences of the Project. It is observed that the Project is heavy on policy development of the two new management modalities that it introduces. In this regard, a policymaker-directed communication plan is recommended. In this regard, policymakers are recommended to be among the primary target publics of the Plan. It is understood from the KAP that policymakers refer to national lawmakers (House of Representatives and the Senate). This is useful. However, it is also recommended that along with national lawmakers, policymakers in the Executive Branch be also included as they may present faster solutions to the policy needs of the Project. The lawmakers of the Legislative Branch will be useful for long-term, beyond-the-project policy pursuits for these management modalities. With shorter time left to the Project, it is recommended that the communication plan also include initiatives that can be pursued beyond the Project life. Not to be forgotten, too, are the services within the DENR structure, which need to be targeted. The FMB, for instance, has to be persuaded to fully internalize biodiversity conservation to be part of its forestland use planning processes. The MGB, for its part, has to be persuaded to take into consideration the biodiversity impacts of mining, should they happen in areas subject of the Project. On the whole, however, the real target should be the DENR leadership in whose hands largely lies the synergy or balance between biodiversity conservation and environmental protection on the one hand, and responsible natural resource utilization on the other hand. Other government agencies have to be targeted as well. The NCIP should be foremost of them, if only to explain ICCAs as an exercise of IP rights warranted by the IPRA, and the consistency of ICCAs with AD recognition and management. Also important are the DILG and the LGU leagues. They can be powerful allies in mainstreaming LCAs and ICCAs in local development policymaking and planning as well as in national policy development. The communication plan should also ensure that all layers of governance are taken into consideration. There have been instances, as reported in KIIs and FGDs conducted, where the regional offices of the DENR and provincial governments are not reached or informed by the Project.
7 Ensure local co-management bodies to oversee and build on gains This will ensure that the gains of the Project are continued on after its termination. This could have been the role of the LSCs beyond the Project. However, it is also recognized that bodies that are driven by projects can have an ad hoc existence, i.e., they die out after funding support is gone. This is often the case where the representatives to, or members of, the body are also swamped with other tasks. In this regard, it might be a wiser option to tap existing local development boards/councils whose work is relevant to the Project?s initiatives to perform this mandate. Indeed, it might be a more practical and effective choice to resort to local bodies that are already institutionalized, such as the Local Government Code mandated Local Development Board. This might even cause the local DENR offices to be mainstreamed into the local development bodies, thereby allowing the DENR to have more impact on local environment and natural resources policies, programs and plans. This is especially important because of observations during interviews that local DENR offices hardly work with local governments and stakeholders.
8 Identify ForEx loss as risk in future projects Considering the volatility of the PHP in the money market, future projects should better identify foreign exchange loss as a risk that they may be addressed at as early as the proposal stage. Some recommendations on this are: a. For projects that are funded in foreign currency, a more conservative conversion rate should be adopted. It will be recalled that when the Project Document of NewCAPP was prepared, the USD was very strong, thus, a high conversion rate was adopted. However, at the commencement of the Project, the PHP strengthened apparently due to the victory of Pres. Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III in the then recent presidential election. b. The Philippine Government should guarantee projects against foreign exchange losses so as to ensure that project targets are met. c. Should currency conversion result in gains, such gains should be treated as buffer funds to cover losses. d. Project funds quoted in foreign currency should provide a conditional buffer amount, which may be used in situations of foreign exchanges losses.
9 Look forward to working on other modalities Since the Project is already showing considerable level of success in making a case for LGU-LCAs and ICCAs, it is ripe to start thinking about other modalities that can further the menu of options for local stakeholders beyond these two modalities. One modality that deserves attention should be CB-LCAs. CB-LCAs are presently more popular in the coastal and marine environments where community-established and -managed Marine Protected Areas are commonplace. In the terrestrial/forestry realm, perhaps a good start would be to work with communities that take care of mangrove forests, or are CBFMA or PACBRMA holders. Agreements between LGUs and communities for the latter to manage communal forests may also be a possibility. An equally exciting proposition is the protection of privately owned lands ? an idea that was entertained during project formulation. All these, however, will have to be pursued in future projects.
1. Recommendation: Focus on the qualitative gains of the Project As noted under Outcome 1, the Project fell short of its quantitative target of 400,000 ha pilot sites. Especially considering the shortened Project life, it will be unlikely that the target will be met in the remainder of the Project timeline. On the other hand, it is noted that the Project is doing good progress in establishing the sites and mainstreaming the management modalities that it advocates. ICCA, for instance, has taken a big leap from virtual oblivion in the Philippines to being a battle cry for many IP communities. The IP and CSO partners explicitly credit and than the Project for this achievement. The LCAs are also gaining ground and is expected to move faster in the second half of implementation. As expressed by UNDP?s Ms. Supetran, the meat of the Project is to make a case for these modalities that they may be mainstreamed in policy and practice. In this respect, the Project is very likely to succeed. Besides, the 133,241 ha currently being worked on, is already sizeable. If any, the 400,000 ha may be considered as too ?ambitious? a target considering that the Project is intended for piloting. It is, thus, recommended that the UNDP and the GEF as well as the Project redefine the target of 400,000 ha under Output 1.2 as either the maximum area to be covered, or adopt the submission of the PMU to treat the 400,000 ha as merely the total landscape within which the Project shall pilot the modalities. Meanwhile, the DENR, the DILG and the NCIP are invited to take advantage of the momentum of this groundbreaking Project, and cooperatively replicate and expand the coverage of the models so as to meet the 400,000 ha target herein (and hopefully larger) beyond the Project life. This should be part of their targets under their respective departmental plans.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The PMU agrees with the recommendation. From the beginning, the Project has maintained that the 400,000 hectares is the total area of KBA pilots covered from which specific locations and extent of new and diverse governance regimes of protected areas will be established. It is generally known that KBAs cover large landscapes covering both huge settlements, private lands, and alienable and disposable lands. The approach taken by the Project has been to conduct BD assessments, stakeholder consultations, which served as basis for identifying the extent of local conservation areas (LCAs) that will be established. In the same vein, engagements with IP communities and documentation of traditional governance systems and practices are processes that ultimately determine the location and extent of indigenous community conserved areas (ICCAs) to be established. Thus, the total areas of new conservation areas (LCAs and ICCAs) are mere subsets of the total area of KBAs. This is the same approach in the establishment of PAs under the NIPAS. The Project Board has earlier raised this as a concern, and adequate clarification made by the Project. In order to firm up the parameters for terminal evaluation, such change or clarification will be officially documented through a formal communication to UNDP and GEF. It would be ideal if there would be opportunities within the life of the Project to have greater engagement with DENR and NCIP to adopt and replicate new conservation models demonstrated under the Project. The Project will exhaust all means to speed up this process during its remaining period of implementation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Document the recommendation in the APR/PIR 2014, to clarify the target coverage of NewCAPP
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU 2014/07 Completed The area of coverage has been clarified in the PIRs succeeding the MTR
Continue to explore effective ways by which DENR and NCIP can systematically support the expansion of LCAs and ICCAs through replication and other appropriate measures. Other agencies, such as DILG, will also be involved.
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU 2015/09 Completed Various options have earlier been considered by the Project to enable NCIP and DENR to officially adopt ICCAs and LCAs as key strategies and mainstream these in their programs. These have been pursued in the remaining years of implementation.
2. Recommendation: Chart the termination of project involvement in sites With the shortened time of the project for on-site work, it is necessary that the project focus on closing work in the areas. As can be understood from the results of on-site data gathering, the local stakeholders are uncertain as to how the project will end in their respective areas. Nevertheless, it appears that for many, the completion of the local plans is sufficient as this would leave or provide a platform for future actions and interventions. It is best for the project to chart with stakeholders the end term of the interventions in each area, and plan out how support can be continuously streamed down to them beyond the project. A sustainability plan should be incorporated in the process. Also an essential component of these plans should address the strong clamor of local stakeholders, especially the IPs/ICCs, for a clear trickle down of benefits of community-driven natural resource management in terms of household income and the well-being of individual community members by including interventions for livelihood support to enable them to enjoy the economic consequences of their conservation work.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The Project has planned to complete the remaining work in the sites in 2014. This was the focus of the year-end assessment carried out in December 2013, and the work and financial plan for 2014. Part of such ?closure? was the preparation of sustainability plans in coordination with local partners, such as the regional DENR offices, local government units and indigenous communities. While the ?end Project state? will be completed conservation management plans and adoption of these through LGU Ordinances and IP declarations; the Project is also endeavoring to prepare bridging plans for supporting livelihood development, formulation of LCA Business Plans, and initial implementation of LCA and ICCA Conservation Plans.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Undertake Action Planning sessions with LGU partners and IP communities to clarify the end of Project situation in the sites
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU/LRPs 2014/09 Completed Sustainability planning workshops have been done with the LRPs, IP communities and other partners
Complete Site Sustainability Plans/LCA Business Plans
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU, in coordination with site LRPs 2014/12 Completed Sustainability planning workshops have been done with the LRPs, IP communities and other partners
Support partners in preparing proposals to secure bridging financing to implement priority activities in the LCA/ICCA Management Plans
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU, in coordination with LRPs and partner LGUs/IP communities 2015/09 Completed The NewCAPP has prepared and submitted several proposals to support ICCAs and LCAs.
3. Recommendation: Help ensure community benefits for sustainability of conservation efforts Among the expectations of local communities, particularly IPs/ICCs that have been involved in the ICCA campaign of the Project is obtaining benefits from the initiative, not necessarily in a direct manner but more so as a product of the recognition of ICCAs. For instance, the PES that is already seeing light for the MILALITTRA in Mt. Kalatungan is starting to raise hopes for many other IP communities. In this regard, it is recommended that community benefits be intentionally included in the Project?s disengagement plans with communities over and above the funds that may be raised for PA management. The PAWB/BMB and UNDP are also urged to include this aspect in successor biodiversity conservation initiatives.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The Project has partnered with the Department of Trade and Industry ? Design Center of the Philippines (through the BPP) to undertake livelihood assessment in its two sites ? Mt. Kalatungan and Mt. Nacolod. These will serve as basis for the formulation of skills and product development assistance to generate income opportunities from local resources, in a way that is BD friendly. The bridging support (Recommendation 2) is also aimed at ensuring there are diversified and additional income opportunities for local and IP communities. In addition, efforts are being made to link LGUs involved in LCAs with sources of technical assistance and financial assistance for them to realize economic benefits from conservation actions. One example is the support of the Department of Tourism in the formulation of Ecotourism Plan with accompanying Ecotourism Business Plans in the Mt. Tapulao LCA. Other examples are ? linkages with the GIZ?s Protected Area Management Enhancement (PAME) Project, to tap their financing facility to implement priority actions in the LCA Management Plans of LGUs.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Support the Xavier Science Foundation (the PES Fund Manager for Mt. Kalatungan) to prepare proposals for PTFCF assistance in brokering PES payments from other interested organizations; and in replicating the Miarayon experience to the rest of the IP groups in Mt. Kalatungan
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU, in coordination with DENR Regional Office 2014/09 Completed Done. The PTFCF has provided around P2M to support the PES in Mt. Kalatungan.
Include in the proposals for bridging fund, support to livelihood, enterprise development and capacity building of IP communities involved in ICCAs
[Added: 2014/12/15] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU, in coordination with DENR Regional Offices and LRPs 2015/06 Completed Done. The PTFCF has provided around P2M to support the PES in Mt. Kalatungan.
4. Recommendation: Continue and strengthen policy work The Project has indeed done a lot with its policy work. What needs to be worked on, however, is the policy articulation of the initiatives of the Project so as to identify their place in the whole natural resource management schema of the DENR. This might also entail working with other NGAs to effectively place mainstream these modalities in their (other agencies?) policy frameworks. For instance, should it be found that LCAs can be treated under the Wildlife Conservation Act management scheme, then, it should be so articulated in policy terms and mainstreamed into the DENR and DILG policies. Necessarily, the institutional and financing mechanisms for their continued management should be expressed. Similarly, ICCA may well be expressed in policy terms that apply not only within the DENR but also within the framework of the NCIP. The vehicle/s for such policy mainstreaming should also be defined, taking heed of the need to ensure national support to ICCAs and LCAs, exploring possibilities not only within the administrative structure, but outside thereof. For instance, USec. Gerochi suggests that these modalities be inputted in the national land use bill. A concrete option of course is the ICCA bill of Rep. Teddy Baguilat. For his part, Sec. Acosta suggests that LCAs and ICCAs be included as among the legacies of the present dispensation, through an Executive Order. It would be worthwhile for the Project to identify sponsors that can facilitate the issuance of an Executive Order. Incidentally, the Project can also help LGUs in developing their local ordinances and plans that include LCAs in particular and biodiversity conservation in general. In this regard the Project should collaborate strongly with DILG, along with the LGU leagues to help campaign for the recognition of LCAs and ICCAs by local governments as well as in advancing the ideas of these new management modalities for national policy development. Since it has already shown some promise in the area of PES, the Project might as well design a policy on PES. Such policy is expected to benefit not only the Project sites but many other poor communities (not only IPs/ICCs) that protect and conserve the natural resources on which they depend. Indeed, the policy environment may not be as friendly to the Project?s advocacy as we may want it to be. However, being a project, its best contribution under the circumstances is to provide a basis for the eventual adoption of its models into the policy realm. It is the expected role of the concerned actors within the DENR, particularly the PAWB, to elevate these policy recommendations into draft policy instruments and lobby within the DENR and the office of the President for their adoption. Ultimately, of course, the arena for a more permanent adoption of these modalities shall be the Philippine Congress, where the DENR is expected to lobby with a united stand.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The Project is exploring a number of avenues to promote the adoption of LCAs and ICCAs as part of mainstream policies and programs: ? Working with Congress to include ICCAs as conservation zones under the National Land Use Code ? Support to Congress in the deliberations of the ICCA Bill ? Working with NCIP to mainstream ICCA procedures in CADT documentation of claims and preparation of ADSDPPs ? Working with DILG to issue Joint Circulars promoting the establishment of LCAs by LGUs ? Working with UNEP/WCMC to establish a parallel National ICCA Registry ? Preparation of Draft Executive Order Establishing a National ICCA Registry The Project is supporting the Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) to coordinate a multi donor initiative to prepare a National PA System Master Plan that considers, LCAs and ICCAs as part of the broader definition of the PA system in the Philippines. The Plan has a strong financing strategy component that will consider the NewCAPP?s experience on PES, as a way of directly rewarding IP communities for their contributions to conservation efforts. The promotion of the strengths of ICCAs and LCAs shall also be made through a facilitated exchange with LGUs and IP communities, of the NewCAPP?s experiences and lessons through the National LCA Conference (Sept 30-Oct1); and the Second National ICCA Conference (Oct 2-3).

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Continue working with Congress to include ICCAs as conservation zones under the National Land Use Code 2. Support to Congress in the deliberations of the ICCA Bill 3. Work with NCIP to mainstream ICCA procedures in CADT documentation of claims and preparation of ADSDPPs 4. Work with DILG to issue Joint Circulars promoting the establishment of LCAs by LGUs 5. Work with UNEP/WCMC to establish a parallel National ICCA Registry 6. Preparation of Draft Executive Order Establishing a National ICCA Registry
[Added: 2014/12/16] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU 2015/09 Completed The Project has made sure of the incorporation of ICCAs in the National Land Use Code, ICCA Bill, and E-NIPAS. However, it cannot guarantee approval of draft Bills in Congress and Senate. The DENR-BMB has been pursuing these through other projects and their regular programmes. Similarly, the DENR BMB is continuing its coordination work with DILG, NCIP and other agencies to support initiatives on ICCAs and LCAs. It has also prepared a draft concept note on the National ICCA Registry.
5. Recommendation: Continue working on and with NCIP The evaluator recognizes the efforts that have been exerted by the Project in involving the NCIP in the Project in a profound manner. The NCIP, on the other hand, is apparently constrained by its low absorptive capacity, both in terms of finances and human resources. This difficulty is understandably beyond the Project. Despite that, however, the NCIP is undeniably an important, if not indispensable, player particularly on matters concerning ICCAs. Getting the NCIP into the ballgame thus remains a challenge for the Project. What might work for the Project is the new development in the internal management of the NCIP. The NCIP now has a new Chairwoman and Executive Director. It is also noted that the new NCIP management has opened its doors to partnerships with projects and programs of other NGAs and CSOs affective and involving IPs, by initiating a series of dialogues with them. The evaluator is cognizant of the Project?s laudable participation in this initiative. This is indeed a good ?new start? for the Project, and thus must be pursued. The purpose of this exercise may no longer be for the Project itself but for future initiatives along the lines of ICCAs, as certainly the ICCA initiative ought to be carried on by the DENR-PAWB/BMB beyond the lifetime of the Project or through other future projects. An expected substantive aspect of the deliberation with the NCIP is the synergy between the ICCA approach of the Project?s PA management modality with the AD management approach of the NCIP as mandated by the IPRA. But then again, there is recognition that partnership-building with the NCIP ? and with other relevant NGAs for that matter ? is bigger than the Project. It is a systemic challenge. Therefore, it is the DENR that has to pick up the real challenge of building this institutional relationship with the NCIP. Indeed, approaching this matter from an institutional perspective will not only benefit the Project and its fruits but all other initiatives of the DENR where NCIP concerns have to be taken into consideration. The DENR should thus exert efforts to put an appropriate policy instrument in place, e.g., a MOA with the NCIP, or a policy directive if deemed needed, to effect this partnership. Meanwhile, the NCIP is urged to continuously engage the Project on ICCA discussions. As an unsolicited input, the ICCA may be viewed as a component that can strengthen AD management by IPs/ICCs. It is noted that initiatives of this kind fall within the FPIC rules of the NCIP, the latest of which is NCIP Administrative Order No. 3, s. 2012. That this process is at the heart of the ongoing discussion of the NCIP with various initiatives right now is appreciated. It is hoped that the FPIC process will be made cognizant of the developmental nature of the ICCA approach, and make the process more manageable for IPs/ICCs. Better yet, the ADSDPP process may be made cognizant of ICCA (its elements) as a strategy for enriching ADSDPPs.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The Project is continuing on its engagement with NCIP, to bring this to a level where joint policies and administrative guidelines can be issued in support of mainstreaming of ICCAs in ADSDPP processes. In relation with this, the Project is also coordinating with the UNDP-GEF Biodiversity Partnerships Programme (BPP), in its work to integrate BD concerns in ADSDPP. The ICCA Manual, which documents the NewCAPP experience in the documentation, mapping and registration of ICCAs is being prepared. This could serve as inputs to the harmonization of ICCAs in ADSDPPs. Other ongoing efforts include planning for the Second National ICCA Conference, as a way of strengthening collaboration with NCIP ad other partners, and to solidify the support of relevant agencies to IPs in the identification, management and protection of ICCAs. The DENR-NCIP MOA has been prepared, with inputs from NewCAPP, and is expected to formalize the institutional collaboration between NCIP and relevant DENR programs working on ancestral domains.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Finalize and sign the DENR-NCIP MOA 2. Finalize the ICCA Manual of Procedures 3. In coordination with BPP, formulate supplemental guidelines for integrating ICCAs as part of ADSDPP preparation
[Added: 2014/12/16] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
DENR, PMU 2014/10 Completed The MOA between NCIP and DENR has been signed with regard to the project implementation in IP areas; the ICCA Manual based on demonstration experience was drafted.
6. Recommendation: Build on the KAP Study and Develop an IEC Plan With the KAP done, the Project can now get down to preparing a detailed communication plan. What is commendable with the KAP is that it identifies the target audiences of the Project. It is observed that the Project is heavy on policy development of the two new management modalities that it introduces. In this regard, a policymaker-directed communication plan is recommended. In this regard, policymakers are recommended to be among the primary target publics of the Plan. It is understood from the KAP that policymakers refer to national lawmakers (House of Representatives and the Senate). This is useful. However, it is also recommended that along with national lawmakers, policymakers in the Executive Branch be also included as they may present faster solutions to the policy needs of the Project. The lawmakers of the Legislative Branch will be useful for long-term, beyond-the-project policy pursuits for these management modalities. With shorter time left to the Project, it is recommended that the communication plan also include initiatives that can be pursued beyond the Project life. Not to be forgotten, too, are the services within the DENR structure, which need to be targeted. The FMB, for instance, has to be persuaded to fully internalize biodiversity conservation to be part of its forestland use planning processes. The MGB, for its part, has to be persuaded to take into consideration the biodiversity impacts of mining, should they happen in areas subject of the Project. On the whole, however, the real target should be the DENR leadership in whose hands largely lies the synergy or balance between biodiversity conservation and environmental protection on the one hand, and responsible natural resource utilization on the other hand. Other government agencies have to be targeted as well. The NCIP should be foremost of them, if only to explain ICCAs as an exercise of IP rights warranted by the IPRA, and the consistency of ICCAs with AD recognition and management. Also important are the DILG and the LGU leagues. They can be powerful allies in mainstreaming LCAs and ICCAs in local development policymaking and planning as well as in national policy development. The communication plan should also ensure that all layers of governance are taken into consideration. There have been instances, as reported in KIIs and FGDs conducted, where the regional offices of the DENR and provincial governments are not reached or informed by the Project.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The preparation of a Communication Plan out of the KAP Study is being undertaken in the context of an integrated Communications Plan of the newly named BMB. The Project is actively participating in this process. This is also one way of ensuring that advocacy for new conservation areas will be integral to BMB?s communication strategy. Nonetheless, there are a number of actions that are being made to pursue the IEC Plan.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Discussions with Congress and Senate Chiefs of Staff on the State of PA Management in the Philippines and the new conservation modalities
[Added: 2014/12/16] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU 2014/08 Completed
Engagement with NCIP, DENR and DILG on LCAs and ICCAs; Sharing of best practices on LCAs/ICCAs and policy advocacy with agencies, Congress and other stakeholders; Documentation of LCA and ICCA Case Studies; Strengthening IEC activities in the sites
[Added: 2014/12/16] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU/BMB in coordination with DENR regional offices and LRPs 2014/10 Completed Conducted the National LCA and Second National ICCA Conference which became the venue for sharing of best practices on ICCAs and LCAs. It also became a vehicle for securing support from other stakeholders. These events were supported by GIZ-PAME, and USAID, through the Phil Tropical Forest Conservation Foundation (PTFCF)
7. Recommendation: Ensure local co-management bodies to oversee and build on gains This will ensure that the gains of the Project are continued on after its termination. This could have been the role of the LSCs beyond the Project. However, it is also recognized that bodies that are driven by projects can have an ad hoc existence, i.e., they die out after funding support is gone. This is often the case where the representatives to, or members of, the body are also swamped with other tasks. In this regard, it might be a wiser option to tap existing local development boards/councils whose work is relevant to the Project?s initiatives to perform this mandate. Indeed, it might be a more practical and effective choice to resort to local bodies that are already institutionalized, such as the Local Government Code mandated Local Development Board. This might even cause the local DENR offices to be mainstreamed into the local development bodies, thereby allowing the DENR to have more impact on local environment and natural resources policies, programs and plans. This is especially important because of observations during interviews that local DENR offices hardly work with local governments and stakeholders.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

The Project took a more practical approach at organizing coordination bodies at the local level, and that is ? to determine what is working and building upon such mechanisms to improve the likelihood of sustainability. Thus, the Project?s work in LCAs capitalizes on the LGU (MENRO, Environment Councils, and the Planning and Development Coordinator) and building relations with local DENR who are the local partners of NewCAPP. Throughout implementation, the Project was instrumental in bringing the two institutions working closely together. Site based memorandum of Agreements between DENR and the LGUs served as vehicles for these two bodies to collaborate on the establishment of LCAs. Given more time and resources however, it would have been ideal to set up such structure at the provincial level to replicate the experiences and lessons from the NewCAPP sites. For ICCA sites, the situation is the same ? the NewCAPP serving as the conduit to strengthen DENR support to IP communities, even beyond the Project. In some areas, regional DENR offices have extended the support to include partnership agreements to support reforestation, nursery development, deputation of Forest Wardens, and other agency concerns. What is weak is the limited participation of NCIP regional offices in some regions, due to delays in the formalization of the MOA with NCIP.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
1. Facilitate commitments of regional DENR offices to LGUs involved in LCAs, beyond Project Completion 2. Facilitate commitments of regional DENR offices to IPs communities involved in ICCAs, beyond Project Completion
[Added: 2014/12/16] [Last Updated: 2017/06/27]
PMU/BMB and DENR Regional Offices 2015/03 Completed This formed part of the Site Sustainability Plans Efforts which involved the NCIP in the process.
8. Recommendation: Identify ForEx loss as risk in future projects Considering the volatility of the PHP in the money market, future projects should better identify foreign exchange loss as a risk that they may be addressed at as early as the proposal stage. Some recommendations on this are: a. For projects that are funded in foreign currency, a more conservative conversion rate should be adopted. It will be recalled that when the Project Document of NewCAPP was prepared, the USD was very strong, thus, a high conversion rate was adopted. However, at the commencement of the Project, the PHP strengthened apparently due to the victory of Pres. Benigno Simeon C. Aquino III in the then recent presidential election. b. The Philippine Government should guarantee projects against foreign exchange losses so as to ensure that project targets are met. c. Should currency conversion result in gains, such gains should be treated as buffer funds to cover losses. d. Project funds quoted in foreign currency should provide a conditional buffer amount, which may be used in situations of foreign exchanges losses.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

Noted and agreed. Foreign exchange rate fluctuations should be a key consideration in the financing plan of future projects.

Key Actions:

9. Recommendation: Look forward to working on other modalities Since the Project is already showing considerable level of success in making a case for LGU-LCAs and ICCAs, it is ripe to start thinking about other modalities that can further the menu of options for local stakeholders beyond these two modalities. One modality that deserves attention should be CB-LCAs. CB-LCAs are presently more popular in the coastal and marine environments where community-established and -managed Marine Protected Areas are commonplace. In the terrestrial/forestry realm, perhaps a good start would be to work with communities that take care of mangrove forests, or are CBFMA or PACBRMA holders. Agreements between LGUs and communities for the latter to manage communal forests may also be a possibility. An equally exciting proposition is the protection of privately owned lands ? an idea that was entertained during project formulation. All these, however, will have to be pursued in future projects.
Management Response: [Added: 2014/12/15]

There is very little time available under the Project to start demonstration example of other modalities such as community based conservation areas. The experience of the Project has been that majority of community based efforts are driven by contractual agreements between government and local communities and not based on the innate relation of communities with resources. Some cases of the latter may exist, but due to the fact that the public domain (where most forest areas and KBAs are situated) are by law owned, controlled and managed by the State, it has been difficult to attribute the conservation efforts of communities with their contractual obligations or with their natural affinity for resource conservation.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Action on this recommendation could be explored more fully in successor or new projects, particularly in the coastal and marine KBAs, where the policy and institutional arrangements are more supportive of recognizing community based conservation efforts.
[Added: 2014/12/16] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
DENR BMB 2018/02 Completed Other community conservation models are being explored under the BMB's different projects like SGP Philippines and the SMARTSeas Projects.

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