The Sasmuan municipal government in Pampanga province kick-started an ecological campaign through a coastal clean-up and bird watching activity at the Bangkung Malapad Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area.
Officials said the event was in celebration of the second anniversary of the declaration of Sasmuan Pampanga Coastal Wetlands as the eight Ramsar site in the Philippines.
In a Sun Star Pampanga report, Sasmuan Mayor Catalina Cabrera stressed the importance of the wetland area in terms of the people’s livelihood and safety.
“This is the source of livelihood for the people of Sasmuan. Since we do not have farmlands and this area is still within the Pampanga Bay, our fisherfolk catch something to eat and sell here,” she was quoted as saying.
“Also, this serves as the shield of our coastal barangays against calamities, hazards, and natural disasters,” Cabrera said.
The mayor also noted that the wetland area will serve to boost tourism activities in the town.
“This wetland is of international importance. Personally, despite Sasmuan being a 4th class municipality, I am proud that we were able to establish an ecotourism site here. Let us all pull our efforts in one direction towards its preservation and protection,” she said.
“This is not a private property. This belongs to the government so we all should have our stake to protect it,” Cabrera said.