As the environmental damages piled up, the once white beaches of Boracay deteriorated with moss, and human waste overtaking the coastline. In 2018, the Philippine government ordered the six-month closure of this world-class tourist spot in order to clean up its beaches. Now, months later, Boracay has been returned to its original state and tourists are getting excited to visit again.
Pushing for a sustainable eco-tourism policy, the Philippines took strides to return the paradise to its original condition. The closure lasted for 6 months. A finding showed that more than 80% of the establishments did not have a proper waste protocol. This led to the conclusion that most establishments drained their waste onto the sea. Fortunately, the closure presented an opportunity to fix this matter for the benefit of the residents and its 2.1 Million Annual visitors.
The closure was not calm or composed. Boracay is home to 17,000 permanent residents. And the government received a fair amount of complaints and clamors against the closure as their businesses were sure to suffer. As quoted by one resident, “Now we have to suffer for their mistakes”.
Happily, business is back to normal for the residents of Boracay. The island resort is stronger than ever as the Philippines tourism board expects a massive inflow of bookings to paradise. In fact, a million tourists are expected to visit Boracay in 2020.
A concerted effort among different civic and non-civic organizations can truly lead to great things. This tiny island in the middle of the Philippines is a great testament.