Sen. Loren Legarda welcomed the discovery of rice terraces in the province of Antique and said it should further elicit respect for nature and for our cultural heritage.
“The merging of our people’s ingenuity and nature, as exemplified by these rice paddies, is both humbling and inspiring. To think that it was just in our backyard this whole time,” said Legarda, who is an Antiqueña.
Antique’s 600-hectare rice terraces can be found in wide mountain slopes of Brgy. General Fullon, in San Remigio in the province of Antique. The rice paddies are said to be 200 years old and maintained by the Iraynon-Bukidnon, an indigenous group from the province of Antique.
Legarda reminded that all stakeholders should play their part in ensuring the delicate ecology of the rice terraces.
“We all play an important role in protecting our heritage. This newly discovered natural wonder is home to a community that is in harmony with its environment. We should not disturb this delicate relationship,” Legarda added.
The Senator also said that the government and public can learn from the management and effects of tourism that continue to threaten the existence of rice terraces in the Philippines.
“The local government units in Antique could learn from the experience of the Ifugao community in their continuous struggle to preserve their rice terraces under their ancient muyung system, so as to ensure that these newly-discovered terraces are sustainably protected,” Legarda concluded.