Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama and Colombia are showing how cooperation can lead to wonderful results. The Eastern Tropical Pacific Marine Corridor (CMAR) initiative will create a fishing-free corridor covering more than 500,000 sqkm. The area is one of the richest ocean hotspots and a vital migratory route for sea turtles, whales, sharks and rays.
As you may recall last year a fleet of hundreds of commercial and industrial fishing boats anchored just around the Galapagos Marine Reserve.
“Just protecting the waters around them is not enough. There’s a connectivity between the areas and that’s what we need to protect,” said Hearn, who belongs to the Migramar network of scientists, which provided evidence for the reserve’s expansion.
This new corridor would prevent exploitation of these last pockets of pristine ocean. The Galapagos, Malpelo, Cocos and Coiba islands are already a laboratory for scientific research, and hopefully after this agreement they will remain so for years to come.
“This is the new language of global conservation. Never have countries with connecting maritime borders joined together to create a public policy.”