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Ifugao - Philippines
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Ifugao
Project Title: Building up Knowledge, Community Resilience and Sustainable Systems Amidst Climate Change in Ifugao, Cordillera Administrative Region, Philippines
Participating Indigenous Peoples/Nation: The 3 major ethnolinguistic groups of Ifugao province in selected villages (minimum 50) in 7 municipalities e.g Tinoc, Asipulo, Hungduan, Banawe, Lagawe, Hingyon and Kiangan
Proponent Organisation: Partnership of Tebtebba Foundation Inc, and Montanosa Research and Development Center, Inc.

Cooperating Organizations:
1. Manhahakeyan di Nemnem di I-Tinek,
2. Ifugao Leaders’ Forum the pilot areas in Tinoc, Ifugao
3. Ifugao Resource Development Center, Inc.

Overall Project Objective
To enable indigenous peoples to assess the impact of climate change on their communities ecosystems and to develop and implement programs towards increasing communities’ resilience and adaptive strategies to mitigate impacts while enhancing bio cultural diversity for food sovereignty and self-determined development.

Brief Description of Project:
The project shall entail research and awareness raising, program development pertinent to increasing local resilience to climate change and advocacy for policy reforms on sustainable development in the national and global level. The research by the communities shall focus on: (a) documenting experiences of coping and adaptation mechanism to climate changes as far back as community can recall; (b) identifying and analyzing the observed climate changes and the impact in recent years on community ecosystems, livelihoods and culture.

The data generated shall be used for the development of community programs/platforms for addressing the negative impacts and formulating adaptation measures for climate change. Platforms shall include but will not be to limited advocacy and awareness raising, promotion of ecological farming, reclamation of degraded areas, especially forests, installation of erosion control measures and others for increased carbon sequestration and decreased river siltation which are deemed necessary in the mountain ecosystem. Moreover, knowledge gained or findings from research shall be used to advocate/negotiate for policy reforms on the national and global level.

Local ecosystem, resource management and livelihoods practices:
A typical Ifugao house is a perfect picture of an agroforestry system surrounded by tree gardens of various species and bamboos integrated with herbs, vegetables and animals. They manifest a deep understanding of diversity and integratedness/ interrelatedness. Economic activities are directly related to the agricultural and ecologically attuned management of fields and woodland – of ponded terraces, dry clearings (swiddens) and private forests (woodlots). Shifting cultivation of sweet potatoes on less-well-watered slopes complements the inundated terraced production of rice. Above the rice fields are woodlots that are nurtured to serve as watersheds as well as sources of the many other needs of the community such as timber, firewood, food, medicines and pesticides. Care, maintenance and development through selective cutting of trees is practiced.

Further away, around the community are communal forests which serve as hunting grounds, shared with neighboring areas, and forming boundaries with adjacent communities. There is no regular system of caring and maintaining these forests but it is expected of any and all members of the community to practice selective cutting of trees, selective hunting (sparing pregnant animals, allowing young ones to live), and clearing of the undergrowth to pave growth for younger trees. Moreover, clearing parts of these forests for agricultural use is allowed under the usufruct rights.

An intricate web of relationships exists between the human and non-human resources of the system, which move to a higher sphere in the spirit world. Ifugao culture and laws revolve around their physical environment, expressed in customs and taboos prescribing the treatment and use of environment and natural resources.

Climatic conditions/trends in the assessment site:
The table below is a synthesis of findings of community meetings done in selected communities in Ifugao in 2008. The table shows a drastic change in rain pattern, which is an interval of too much rain and prolonged drought since the 70’s which worsened in the late 90’s until the present.
Nature of Climate Change
Effects of Climate Change
Coping Mechanism
Adaptation Measures Recommended

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