Optimizing landscape value for man and nature : a case study of land-suitability mapping to conserve biodiversity in Lawaan, Eastern Samar, Philippines

2016-09-21T01:35:45Z (GMT) by Casas, Eulito V. Baguinon, Nestor T.
We show how to identify “hotspot” biodiversity areas on which to base relevant policies and management options whenever traditional, community-based, resource management puts biodiversity conservation at risk, as is the case in Lawaan, Eastern Samar, Philippines. Digital spatial data integration revealed that the lower elevation areas are under the heaviest human pressure and also have the highest biodiversity. This calls for a set of procedures for engaging the full range of stakeholders to identify areas for preservation. Accordingly, we combined Social Based (SB) and Environmental Based (EB) maps to identify four different classifications and identify the locations of “very critical” and “critical” areas that need priority if biodiversity-conservation efforts are to be effective. We also report the results of deploying developed protocols that are designed to support regular updates, thereby accommodating stakeholder interests so that an environmentally-based, zone map can form a basis for consensus building and preservation-zone protection via community enforcement.