Guimaras Province, Philippines — The Province of Guimaras, a PEMSEA ICM parallel site, has embarked on the development of its State of the Coasts (SOC) baseline report. The SOC Baseline details the social, economic and environmental conditions in the coastal Province and serves as a benchmark for measuring changes and assessing the impacts of the ICM program over time.
Following PEMSEA's SOC training in December 2009, an SOC team gathered and consolidated data and information on the socioeconomic and environment conditions of the province. This was a very useful exercise for it allowed identification of data sources, the gaps and actions needed to address the gaps. The consolidation process further built the awareness and appreciation of the stakeholders concerning scope of the various programs and projects that have been completed and/or being implemented in Guimaras and how these initiatives are contributing to the sustainable development of the island province.A workshop was held in January 2010 involving representatives from national and provincial agencies, the five municipalities comprising Guimaras, people's organizations, the private sector and the academe to validate the data and information gathered.The draft SOC baseline report is being targeted for completion and publication within 2010. The data analysis and assessment conducted for the SOC will benefit other ongoing initiatives of the Guimaras ICM program, including the prioritization of issues for consideration in the development of the long-term sustainable development strategic plan for the Province.