Conservation Trust Fund For Mt Mantalingahan Launched

An endowment fund for the conservation of Mt. Mantalingahan Protected Landscape (MMPL) has been launched on Friday, October 7, a first in the country.

Conservation International Philippines (CI-P) launched the endowment fund with a US$1 million grant from its Global Conservation Fund.

The Philippine Tropical Forest Conservation Foundation (PTFCF) serves as the endowment manager.

It now seeks more investors to meet the capitalization target of at least US$2.7 million.

"This innovative fund will provide sustainable financing for the long-term maintenance, protection and enrichment of the biodiversity within the protected area," CI-P executive director Enrique Nuñez said.

Mt. Mantalingahan, Palawan's highest peak, serves as a watershed to 200,000 people and home to over a thousand species, 23 of which are identified as threatened.

MMPL, located in Brooke's Point, has been under threat from mining operations.

"There are elements that threaten to destroy this beautiful landscape," Brooke's Point Mayor Jean Feliciano said during the fund launch at Green Sun Hotel and Art Gallery in Makati City. "I summoned my strength to stand up and hold my grounds against threat of destruction."

Atty. Jose Andres Canivel, PTFCF executive director, said the endowment fund has an "ambition to support management and conservation actions in MMPL."

Canivel said part of PTFCF's strategy for the fund is to set up a management structure in Manila and a grants management, grant evaluation, and grant monitoring body in Palawan.

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