Category: Ifugao.

Philippine terraces may lose World Heritage status

The 2,000-year-old rice terraces of the northern Philippines may be dropped from the United Nations’ World Heritage List unless the government acts to stop their erosion, it was reported. The the governor of Ifugao province, Teodoro Baguilat, is to meet with representatives of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on the issue. The paper did not give a date when they would discuss the possible

delisting of the famous Ifugao rice terraces. The move comes after Carmen Padilla, commissioner of the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines (UNACOM), said the terraces might be taken off the World Heritage list if the government fails to restore their natural grandeur in two years.

He said provincial governments along with non-governmental organisations and civil society faced an uphill battle to preserve and protect the rice terraces.

Over the years UNESCO has expressed its concern about the deterioration of the rice terraces due to mismanagement, uncontrolled building and the apparent absence of a sustainable tourism programme. A major tourist attraction, the rice terraces cover 20,000 hectares (49,400 acres) along the Cordillera mountain range on the main island of Luzon.

Placed on the World Heritage List in 1995, they rise from the bottom of valleys to about 1,000 metres and higher in some places. Environmentalists have said that more than 50 percent of the terraces have vanished over the years.

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Category: Ifugao
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