LEGAZPI CITY—Albay has firmly stood against mining, smoking and the use of plastic materials in the last nine years to protect the ecosystems, Governor Joey Salceda said.
Salceda said the province focused on growing more forest covers, which expanded from a measly 6,300 to 53,000 hectares over the past nine years.
Now a global tourist destination, Albay was declared by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization as a world biosphere reserve with 257,000 hectares of diverse terrestrial and marine ecology protected by pioneering sustainable development strategies.
Salceda said Albayanos had all the reasons to be staunchly protective of these gains, which were among the fruits of the development programs the province pursued for nine years now.
He said as the whole of Albay province was now a biosphere reserve, any mining project would disturb or destroy its rich natural endowments and affect ecotourism, on which the province’s booming tourism industry was largely anchored.
Ecotourism has become Albay’s most successful program, which helped bring in some 1,417,646 tourists to the province in 2015.