San Pablo de Bauan Marine Protected Area (MPA) and Fishery Reserve is a 125-hectare MPA in Bauan, Batangas. The area is a popular diving site, with the resident school of jacks as the famous attraction among local and foreign divers.
Its popularity brought an increase in tourists visiting the area. In the past years, it was a challenge for the local government unit of Bauan to monitor the impact of tourism activities on its marine environment. To address these, Bauan strengthened its efforts on habitat monitoring and seaborne patrolling.
The San Pablo de Bauan MPA and Fishery Reserve is part of a larger network called the Verde Island Passage MPA and Law Enforcement Network. Through the SMARTSeas PH, the LGU and MPA leaders were able to increase their capacity in MPA management through training and workshops on coastal resource management and law enforcement. During the 2019 Para El Mar, it was recognized as the second-best locally managed marine protected area.
The SMARTSeas PH is a marine conservation project led by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) with support from UNDP Philippines and Global Environment Facility. In Verde Island Passage, it was implemented by Conservation International – Philippines.