AC Energy, through its wind farms in Ilocos Norte, North Luzon Renewables and NorthWind, has taken significant strides in boosting its turtle conservation program within its host communities by recently partnering with the Marine Wildlife Watch of the Philippines (MWWP), an organization advocating for the conservation and protection of marine-wildlife and their habitats.

Aside from the ongoing awareness and training programs on environmental preservation and biodiversity being conducted by AC Energy for the local communities in Bangui and Pagudpud, and the continuous coordination with DENR and the local government, through the new partnership with MWWP, a Pawikan Conservation Action Plan will now serve as a framework for the company, its partners and stakeholders in the rollout of an enhanced turtle conservation program.

Through a comprehensive review of socio-ecological baseline studies, monitoring reports and existing training programs, as well as field visits and meetings with local stakeholders, the MWWP will be able to provide guidelines on threat management and resource protection to ensure the protection of the endangered species. The consultant will also assess current capacities of the local communities to be able to design appropriate training programs and workshops for a fortified program.

“Raising awareness on the importance of marine turtles in the ecosystem, and the need to safeguard their habitat proved to be an effective strategy to combat the threat of poaching and smuggling of sea turtles in our host communities,” said Irene S. Maranan, AC Energy Vice President and Head of Corporate Communications and Sustainability. “We have seen a significant behavioral shift with the local communities, and by rolling out our Pawikan Conservation Action Plan, we hope to further strengthen the species’ protection by involving the local residents and allowing them to become stewards of our Conservation Estate.”

The coastal communities in Ilocos Norte are known habitats of marine turtles. In Bangui Bay, three out of five species found in the Philippines were recorded to have bred in the 9-km shoreline: the endangered olive ridley turtle, the green turtle, and the critically endangered hawksbill turtle.