Project Protect Danajon was officially launched on July 22, 2023, during the Provincial Government’s 169th Bohol Day Program at the Bohol Cultural Center.

This initiative aims to enhance governance and stakeholder participation in conserving the Danajon Double Barrier Reef, a recognized geosite part of the Bohol Island UNESCO Global Geopark. Project Danajon is a multi-sectoral collaborative effort led by the Coastal Conservation and Education Foundation, Inc. (CCEF), in partnership with the Gerry Roxas Foundation (GRF), the United States Agency For International Development-Investing in Sustainability and Partnerships For Inclusive Growth Regenerative Ecosystem (USAID INSPIRE).

During the 169th Bohol Day commemorative program, USAID-INSPIRE’s Rebecca Paz spoke on the project background and motivation to conserve the Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef from environmental degradation, especially from harmful unregulated human activities such as overfishing.

CCEF tapped the Provincial Government of Bohol, Cebu, Leyte, Southern Leyte, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region 7, and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) Region 7 in creating a strategic plan, combining projects and initiatives to conserve the recognized double barrier reef. The Project will help enhance seascape governance by sharing best practices on marine conservation, strengthening local ordinances on environmental protection, and providing livelihoods that complement the initiative and economic opportunities for local coastal communities that reside near the double barrier reef.

A short meeting attended by CCEF, the Bohol Provincial Environment Management Office (BPEMO), BFAR, DENR, the Provincial Government of Southern Leyte, and the newly-created Bohol Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef Management Council (BDBDBRMC) was held at the Metrocentre Hotel in Tagbilaran City to discuss the next steps of the projects, especially in launching the activities and campaigns, such as the Protected Area Sustainability Assessment (PASA) to be done to know the conditions of the double barrier reef and to prepare for its declaration as a national protected seascape. Governor Aris Aumentado attended and shared a message on the importance of protecting Danajon due to its unique geological appearance and rich biodiversity.

“We at the Provincial Government are a hundred percent supportive of this project, especially since our municipalities are highly involved in this one. This is a big opportunity for us to conserve the reef and regenerate its natural resources from degradation because it is important to our tourism, our fisherfolk’s livelihoods, and our environment,” Aumentado said.

One of the only three existing double barrier reefs in the Indo-Pacific and one of six in the world, the Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef is described as “an area of great significance” due to its distinctive geological formation comprising large sets of coral reefs and habitat for diverse marine species, such as fish, corals, mollusks, seagrasses, and marine mammals. According to CCEF, 50 percent of Filipino fisherfolks get their resources from the famed reef. This initiative to protect Danajon Bank aligns with PGBh’s Strategic Change Agenda on environmental sustainability in protecting the Province’s natural resources and is in line with Bohol’s aspiration to be the first Regenerative Global Geopark in the world.