Good News for Coíba!

At the “Our Ocean Conference,” from October 5-6, 2015, in Valparaiso, Chile, participants from 56 countries announced over 80 new initiatives on marine conservation and protection valued at more than US$2.1 billion, as well as new commitments on the protection of more than 1.9 million square kilometers of the ocean.

Among these announcements, Panama announced the recent creation of two major Marine Protected Areas, Cordillera de Coiba (17,223 square kilometers) and Banco Volcan (14,931 square kilometers), increasing Panama’s protected areas from 3.7 to 13.5 percent of its waters. This initiative was based on scientific expertise and research of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, an important iLCP partner, and includes areas with submarine mountain chains. Panama will allocate at least US$1 million in 2016 for management of these two marine protected areas.

Panama also announced that it will invest approximately US$1.3 million in 2016 and 2017 on “Turismo Verde” (Green Tourism) for marine protected areas in Coiba National Park and Isla Bastimentos National Marine Park to support conservation of biodiversity through the development of low-impact ecotourism.

This is good news for all our partners in Panama who are using photos from the iLCP Expedition to Coíba to promote the protection of this unique area.