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Towards the Development of a Sustainable Financing Mechanism for the Conservation of the Ifugao Rice Terraces in the Philippines

  • Agricultural Science
  • Design
  • Ecology


This study from the Philippines shows that tourism revenue could finance a significant part of the restoration and preservation work that is needed to save one of the country's most important cultural treasures. The study focuses on the key challenges that are facing the Ifugao Rice Terraces. The Ifugao Rice Terraces in the Philippines have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1995. These terraces have been deteriorating steadily in recent years and they have been the subject of a number of under-funded and delayed 'action plans' that have failed to halt their decline. The challenges facing the terraces include a declining water and labour supply. The study finds that capturing tourists' willingness-to-pay for the conservation of the rice terraces could generate revenues of P 6.65 million or more a year. The study also finds that the water supply problems in the terraces would be reduced if deforestation was tackled and irrigation systems and damaged terrace walls were repaired. The study recommends that a labor subsidy payment should be introduced for Ifugao farmers. This would help them to continue to farm the terraces, would go some way to solving labour supply problems and would also help finance costly maintenance and terrace repair work.

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