August 25, 2016: The Protected Areas Network (PAN) is collaborating with the Bureau of Cultural & Historical Preservation (BCHP) in a project to incorporate Palau’s cultural sites into the Network. The PAN regulations enable the addition of this new dimension because it establishes a set of comprehensive criteria guidelines, which includes social criteria such as, subsistence resource usage, cultural, historical, recreation, aesthetics, research and education.
The framework of the PAN was designed to support both natural and cultural resources with initial efforts focused on developing procedures for nominating natural resources. This existing process has allowed Palau’s network of protected areas to grow significantly and strengthen national efforts to support effective management of the country’s biodiversity.
Figure 1PAN Fund GM Regis Emesiochel, BCHP DIrector Sunny Ngirmang & PAN Office Manager King Sam sign the project agreement, witnessed by BCHP consultant, Ms. Camilla Borrevik.
Through this collaboration, BCHP will undertake the development of formal procedures to incorporate cultural sites into the Network. This will be an important addition to supporting states’ efforts in managing cultural sites, and further signifies the importance that traditional management practices has continued to play in the decision-making process, now understood to be supported by modern science. [/restrict]