Enhancing the Adaptive Capacity of Indigenous Peoples by Promoting Sustainable Resin Tapping of Almaciga (Agathis philippinensis) in Palawan and Sierra Madre, Philippines
2015 36 pp. by Arsenio B. Ella, Florena B. Samiano
ISSN 1908-6164 (Soft cover)
Almaciga (Agathis philippinensis Warb.), found mostly in natural forests of ancestral domains in Palawan and Sierra Madre, yields high-quality resin known as Manila copal, which is used as raw material for varnish, paint driers, and other industrial substances. Manila copal is considered an important dollar earner among the country’s non-timber forest products. From 2000 to 2011, an average of 390,400 kg of Manila copal valued at USD 504,900 was exported to different countries. Resin collection is an important source of income for indigenous peoples (IPs), however, most of them practice unsustainable tapping methods leading to resin yield decline and worse, the death of their trees. Furthermore, with climate change as a global concern, the recurrence of natural calamities will have impacts on forest ecosystems, particularly on vulnerable and threatened species like the almaciga. Owing to these, training interventions we re conducted to capacitate the IPs and partners from government agencies on sustainable methods of tapping resins and to provide basic knowledge on climate change-related issues. Training sessions with a total of 144 participants were conducted in Brooke’s Point and Aborlan in Palawan and in Dinapigue, Isabela and in San Luis, Aurora in the Sierra Madre mountains. The training covered three major topics: (1) classroom lecture on almaciga; (2) lecture on climate change; and (3) actual demonstration on proper method of tapping almaciga resin. The series of training successfully educated and capacitated the IPs who participated actively in the discussions and in the practicum. Through the project, the participants learned about the scientific process of resin production in trees and appreciated the importance of applying the tapping technology developed by the Forest Products Research and Development Institute (FPRDI) to sustain the benefits they derive from the almaciga trees. A strong desire to safeguard the untapped trees growing in the area was successfully conveyed to them.
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