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The Philippine Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (PBSAP) is the country’s conservation roadmap that was formally adopted by DENR through Administrative Order 2016-12 and supported by Memorandum Circular 2016-745. Its vision is to restore, rehabilitate, value, effectively manage and secure biodiversity, and maintain ecosystem services to sustain healthy and resilient Filipino communities by 2028. The 20 national targets of the PBSAP form part of the Philippine Development Plan (2017-2022) and serve as the DENR’s commitment to the President’s development agenda, with the Biodiversity Management Bureau as key implementor.

The Biodiversity Finance Initiative (BIOFIN), a project of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) through the Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), has identified several finance solutions that will mobilize new monies, realign existing resources, prevent future cost, and improve delivery of existing finance for the implementation of the Philippine Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (PBSAP) from 2015 to 2028. In 2016, DENR-BIOFIN conducted the following preliminary assessments: Public and Private Biodiversity Expenditure Review (PPBER), and Finance Needs Assessment (FNA). The PPBER findings showed that the government only spends PhP 5 billion in biodiversity conservation, while the FNA identified that the PBSAP needs PhP 24 billion/year. Hence, there is an annual financing gap of PhP 19 billion.

To close this gap, DENR-UNDP BIOFIN is developing finance solutions to help the government implement the PBSAP alongside local biodiversity finance plans and projects. One finance solution identified is an information campaign that will attract private and public funding and will serve as support to the 2018 Expanded National Integrated Protected Area System (E-NIPAS) law called the Year of Protected Areas campaign.

The campaign will commence this year which coincides with the 90th anniversary of protected area establishment in the country. A proposed Presidential Proclamation to support the campaign is currently with the Office of the President which will declare 2022 as the National Year of the Protected Areas and June of each year as the Month of the PAs.

The Year of Protected Areas campaign will be led by the DENR through the Biodiversity Management Bureau and BIOFIN in partnership with the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).