Four new natural protected areas were declared by presidential decree yesterday, bringing to 91 million hectares the total of land and sea areas that have been designated for environmental conservation.
The 5.75-million-hectare Caribbean reserve is located on the east coast of the Yucatán peninsula, and is designed to protect coastal wetlands, coral reefs and sea habitat.
The other three areas are:
The Pacific Islands Biosphere Reserve, a 1.16-million-hectare area off the west coast of the Baja peninsula, is comprised of 21 islands and 97 islets that boast more endemic species per square meter than found in the Galapagos Islands, according to Mexican officials.
The Nature Conservancy, which collaborated with the Mexican government on creation of the three marine reserves, said the Pacific islands reserve will protect land and surrounding waters through multiple-use zoning. Fishing grounds on which local fishermen depend will also be protected, it said.
The Pacific Biosphere Reserve is a deep-sea ocean area consisting of 57.78 million hectares off the Pacific coast. The Nature Conservancy said mining and fishing activities will be allowed but only outside strictly protected core zones.
The reserve takes in coastal waters of Nayarit, Jalisco, Colima, Michoacán, Guerrero, Oaxaca and Chiapas.
The Sierra of Tamaulipas Reserve is 309,000 hectares in Tamaulipas state and home to five feline species in danger of extinction: the jaguar, puma, jaguarondi, oncilla and ocelot. The reserve designation is also intended to protect eight different watersheds.
The Nature Conservancy, which has worked in Mexico for more than 30 years, issued a statement today congratulating the Mexican government for its commitment to conserving marine habitats and fulfilling an international biodiversity target.
President Enrique Peña Nieto signed the decree declaring the new reserves at COP13, a biodiversity conference with representatives from 196 countries in attendance.
- See more at: http://mexiconewsdaily.com/news/four-protected-areas-announced-in-cancun/#sthash.1rHn2wwK.dpuf
Contacts & Resources
Marine Conservation Institute and the Waitt Foundation provide this
interactive tool to help users visualize the locations and coverage of global
marine protected areas (MPA). This atlas provides information on over 8000 MPAs
globally, drawing on datasets from the
World Database on Protected Areas1,
US MPA Center2,
and other country- and regional-level data authorities, as well as research
conducted by the Marine Conservation Institute.
In addition to MPA boundaries and site management information, this dataset
contains information on conservation measures with a particular focus on those
restricting the exploitation of marine life.
Features on this site are designed to allow users to understand (1) where current
protection exists and at what level, and (2), where important areas for future protection
are and any processes underway to establish MPAs. This provides vital information to
countries and their citizens interested in ocean conservation, management and stewardship.
The dataset is constantly being updated and we welcome visitors to the site to provide
feedback and update content by creating a member account on MPAtlas today.