Two coral reef sites declared marine sanctuaries in Puerto Princesa

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Two reefs in Puerto Princesa were identified as marine sanctuaries.

Puerto Princesa (CNN Philippines) — The Puerto Princesa City Council ratified on Monday (July 27) an ordinance declaring two coral reef sites as marine sanctuaries.

Thes are Tangdol Reef, which covers 22.19 hectares in Barangay Bancao-Bancao, and Tagkuti Reef, which covers 62.5 hectares in Barangay Siimpokan.

Currently, Tangdol Reef is under the coral transplantation technology project, a joint initiative of the Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Aquatic and Natural Resources Research Development (DOST-PCAARD), Sangkalikasan Producers Cooperative, Western Philippines University, AFP-Western Command, and the city government.

Once a reef is named a marine sanctuary, any human activities detrimental to the marine life is prohibited, except for approved scientific research.

Coral cover in Palawan has seen a downhill for the last 10 years, making conservation efforts a paramount.

According to the 2015 State of Palawan Environment report of the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSD), Palawan’s live coral cover in “excellent condition” is only at 2.1% as of 2014 - a decline from the 3.7% recorded a decade ago.