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Thursday, December 6, 2012

First non-take fishing zones established in Sian ka'an!!

We would like to congratulate and share with you the recent Kanan Kay Alliance great accomplishment! The Kanan Kay Alliance is made up of 41 members that include fishery and environmental governmental agencies, fishing cooperatives, NGOs focused on marine/coastal conservation, research centers, and philanthropic foundations. GVI  Mexico is very proud to be a member of it, below we share the press release about this accomplishment:  

On the 30th of November the Official Diary of the Federation (similar to other main governmental journals - as the United States Federal Register) published the agreement by which the Secretary of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development and Health (SAGARPA) established the first network of fish refuge zones in the Mexican Caribbean, by request of the Fisherman’s Cooperative of Cozumel and with the technical opinion of the National Institute of Ecology.

The establishment of a network of fish refuge zones in the Espiritu Santo Bay in Sian Ka’an is the result of a two year process led by the Fishermen’s Cooperative of Cozumel, in collaboration with researchers, non-profit organisations, environmental and fisheries authorities and foundations – all members of the Kanan Kay Alliance. The Fishermen’s Cooperative of Cozumel have agreed to set aside select zones, which have the potential to naturally restore and recover marine ecosystems and the lobster fisheries, within their fishing concession area.

This accomplishment was made possible by the hardwork and dedication of civil society and environmental authorities who helped establish the Marine Protected Areas (MPA) and who greatly contributed to the protection of Quintana Roo’s marine ecosystems.

It is the intention of the Kanan Kay Alliance members that the application of this new fisheries’ management tool contributes to meeting the conservation needs and reinforces the zoning of the MPAs; as well as helping to conserve areas lacking in protection and located outside of MPAs.  In order to reach the Alliance’s goal- i.e. conserve 20% of territorial waters in Quintana Roo – we expect that in 2013 the fish refuge zones requested by Fishermen’s Cooperative of José Maria Azcorra in Sian Ka’an and the Cooperatives of Andrés Quintana Roo, Banco Chinchorro and Langosteros del Caribe in Banco Chinchorro, will be added to what has already been decreed.

As part of the Kanan Kay Alliance, we are aware that this first achievement brings new challenges in terms of coordination, communication and collaboration to ensure the successful application of this innovative conservation tool. We trust on the commitment that Alliance members have to conserve the marine natural capital, and in the collaboration that has been shown in the various meetings, as a step towards fulfilling the objective of the Alliance.

To read the complete Secretarial Agreement by which the network of fish refuge zones was decreed, please access the following link (in Spanish):

Thank you all for your collaboration in this conservation effort, which is hopefully the first of many to come for the Alliance. Please feel free to share this exciting news with your colleagues and friends.


Kanan Kay Alliance Coordination Committee