Coastal Zones/Mangrove Forests

The total area of coastal zones or mangrove forest of the province comprises about 4,453 has. However, the Phil. Forestry Statistic reveals that a total of 1,480 hectares of which was already converted into fishponds. Of the 2,973 hectares remaining mangrove forest, a portion of unknown area of which were either converted into reclamation areas, agricultural purposes, aquaculture and urbanization. They are slowly destroyed by over exploitation through forestry and fisheries, pollution and siltation through domestic and industrial wastes and oil spill.

National Integrated Protected Area System (NIPAS) and Environmentally Constrained Areas

The province has already six proposed protected areas, five of which are seascapes and landscapes and one resource reserve (Table 4.14). As of today, the Provincial Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Office has established 22 fish sanctuaries located in the different municipalities of Carrascal, Cantilan, Lanuza, Cortes, Cagwait, Marihatag, Lianga, Barobo, Hinatuan and Lingig. Surigao del Sur is a home of unbelievable number of unique and various animals and plants with an estimated protected forests of about 68,375 hectares and the destruction of these habitat will inevitably lead to the extinction of all the indigenous wild fauna and flora that exist. With the creation of Protected Area Management Bureau (PAMB), the above six proposed protected areas, are being monitored and protected by all members against illegal entry, timber poaching, hunting of wild fauna and other illegal activities. All existing flood prone areas, mangroves, bodies of water, watershed, forest preservation, marine sanctuaries, tourist spots and areas traditionally occupied by cultural communities in the province are considered ecologically sensitive or environmentally critical areas. Water Resources Surigao del Sur is a province whose forest cover is not yet classified as critical. Its watershed is not actually affected by the continuous and inhibited denudation of the forest. However, the need for people's active participation among rural communities in different developmental undertaking is now vital. As agricultural production begins to fall short due to the increasing population, the role of irrigation as a determinant factor towards self-sufficiency in food has emerged as one among government priorities.