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Agdangan Municipality


Conservation benefit: Protection of two no-take fish sanctuaries (301 acres total) and 124 acres of mangroves for 15 years

Community benefit: New environmental education center and 400-meter mangrove boardwalk

Date Approved: 06.2017


This project supports a local conservation-based tourism initiative.


This project protects mangroves, which trap more CO2 than any other kind of forest and as a result, slow global warming.


This project protects ocean ecosystems, making coastal communities more economically and physically secure in the face of climate change.

The municipality of Agdangan, which is located on the largest island in the Philippines, includes a dozen villages or barangays. Agdangan has an extensive coral reef area and dense mangrove forests.

Human activities, however, threaten both the mangroves and the reefs. People dump trash in the mangroves and cut down trees for household construction. Fishers, primarily from neighboring villages, use illegal methods such as banned kinds of nets, dynamite fishing, and cyanide.

The Agdangan community, however, is known for strict enforcement of fisheries laws. It will protect two no-take fish sanctuaries: one existing (Bahurang Silag) and one proposed (Lawis). Community members deputized as fish wardens will help enforce the rules. The municipal government will provide policy and financial support, and it will employ a Fishery Law Enforcement Team to patrol the protected areas.

The community will also protect 124 acres (50 hectares) of mangroves. Currently, forest covers about 60% of that area; the community will replant the rest. Fisherfolk groups will manage the mangrove protection and take primary responsibility for replanting, with technical help from government agencies.

Working with the Tambuyog Development Center, the community will use a Seacology grant to build an information center and boardwalk in the mangrove area. These facilities will showcase local conservation of coastal resources.

Project Updates

April 2018

Construction of both the education center and boardwalk is complete. The marine protected areas are being patrolled, and the new restrictions enforced.

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January 2018

Materials were delivered in October, construction began in November, and the education center was finished in December. Half of the boardwalk has been built. The municipal government declared the new Lawis MPA, and buoys were installed to demarcate it. Patrols are being conducted to monitor illegal activities in both marine protected areas. The Agdangan local government unit intends to develop an ecotourism plan that involves both MPAs, the mangrove forests, and the information center and boardwalk.

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