Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Mayoyao Traditional Landscapes: A Fading Legacy

Esther Lichanan
Executive Director
Save the Ifugao Terraces Movement (SITmo)
Kiangan, Banaue, Philippines

The Banaue Rice Terraces is a cultural landscape that can be viewed as a result of man’s adaptation to his natural environment. Situated in a harsh environment with limited agricultural space, the early inhabitants of Ifugao conquered these threats by constructing terrace ricefields through their ingenuity and sheer manpower. Unfortunately the Banaue community is now experiencing challenges regarding the preservation and management of these traditional landscapes.

The triadic paradigm composed of the local government units (LGUS), civil society organizations, and captive local businesses are now joining forces to create sustainable development measures that will aid in the preservation of the Banaue Rice Terraces. This move is also gaining support from national and international governments. There is a need to harness the same ingenuity and man power to help preserve what our great ancestors have left for us and our future generation.

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