Concern about effects of climate change in Mesoamerican Reef

Environmental groups of Guatemala, Belize, Honduras and Mexico regretted that are not taking the necessary steps to protect the Mesoamerican Reef, which stretches along the Caribbean coast of their country, the effects of climate change.

If they do not take action in the “next 50 years the reefs will face a greater pressure by increasing population, increasing demand for seafood and climate change,” warns a report published by the groups.

The document, called “Progress of the Mesoamerican Reef Countries-2014 of the Healthy Reefs Initiative (HRI) ” stresses the importance of implementing management measures agreed to preserve the “healthy” reef.

The reef covers more than 1,200 km at the northern end of the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, to the Bay Islands on the north coast of Honduras, including the Caribbean coast of Guatemala and Belize.

The HRI established 22 indicators to protect the ecosystem, coastal and marine areas of the reservation. “The new findings highlight Progress report that the pace of implementation of the 22 indicators assessed in 2011 and 2014 has been painfully slow,” says the report.

However, environmentalists regard as a success which now Belize already has 20% of the territorial sea within marine protected areas, percentage established by the Convention on Biological Diversity. The other three countries already had it.

The HRI is a regional initiative launched in 2004 that has the support of more than 50 Guatemalan, regional and international conservation organizations, research and management dedicated to the conservation and sustainable use of the Mesoamerican reef.

“Our next goal is to expand fully-protected areas of fisheries recovery, to ensure the survival of livelihoods of traditional fishermen and 3,000 health of our sea,” says the report.

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