Restoration of Reefs and Coral Communities of the Tico Coast

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    In Costa Rica there are initiatives that are simply part of adding to collective growth and improvement, the greater drive to create awareness.

    Part of these activities are today reflected in the protocol for the recovery of coral reefs and coral communities of our coasts, which has resulted from an arduous inter-sectoral and inter-institutional work to improve the conservation  of coral reefs, key ecosystems in mitigation and adaptation to climate change, also a source of biodiversity and food security.

    It is worth noting that on August 19, an event was held digitally and through the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC), where people were able to appreciate part of the reopening of San Lucas Island comprised of: infrastructure placement to carry accessible water for both park rangers and visitors.

    After the COVID-19 Pandemic, people will be able to enjoy in  this ecological project

    It is necessary to remember that last year 2019, the Costa Rican Government prohibited the extraction of all types of corals. This according to executive decree No. 41774-MINAE. Additionally, the country should have a list of these ecosystems, as well as protocols for their study and rehabilitation.

    In three years, Costa Rica must have an inventory and mapping of all the reef ecosystems, in order to give greater protection to these coastal spaces and counteract the effects of climate change.

    The document “prohibits the extraction, capture and commercialization of any type of coral, except those that, exceptionally, are expressly permitted by SINAC”.

    Nor does it allow solid and liquid waste to be dumped on reefs and coral communities, or in those areas of the maritime land zone or coastal zone, where materials and substances can be washed away by marine currents.

    About the protocol

    It is a tool that allows long-term monitoring of the most important indicators in the Coral Formations, so that each Marine Protected Area (MPA) knows the current state and the changes that occur over time in these ecosystems. .

    The protocol provides the necessary information for the generation of data and its interpretation, generating ecosystem health values and ranges of permissible variation once the monitoring begins to be implemented; Therefore, it can be used both by decision-makers and officials, as well as by local actors involved in the management of the country’s marine protected areas.

    Costa Rica is located in a tropical zone, and is surrounded by two large bodies of water (Pacific and Caribbean), it has the virtue of having an extremely rich coastline, where a great variety of reef ecosystems can be found.

    Many of these ecosystems are already protected under some category of management, however this protection does not ensure their permanence due to the fact that they are exposed to a series of events unrelated to and typical of the protected wild areas that hinder their development.

    It is worth mentioning that coral reefs are one of the most vulnerable marine ecosystems to climate change, therefore the protocol will allow to know the impacts that occur as a result of the increase in water temperatures and other phenomena, such as the acidification of the oceans.

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