The group for the protection of Galapagos seeks to expand the continental shelf of Ecuador

The group for the protection of Galapagos seeks to expand the continental shelf of Ecuador

By Isabel Alarcon
31 July 2020

The team created to design a Galapagos protection strategy has already started looking for ways to achieve this goal. The initiative, led by the former Minister of the Environment Yolanda Kakabadse and the former mayor of Quito and environmentalist Roque Sevilla, is bringing together experts on the subject to promote conservation initiatives.

Sevilla explains that the main objective of this initiative is to face the difficulties that are experienced each year with the presence of the foreign fleet on the outskirts of Galapagos. Currently, they are recruiting national and foreign researchers who have experience in the field. They are also in talks with international organizations.

According to the environmentalist, the process is in an advanced stage. The idea is to work together with the National Navy to propose the expansion of the continental shelf that belongs to Ecuador. In this way, it would go from 200 to 350 miles of protection and eliminate the corridor that currently exists between the waters of the Galapagos and the Exclusive Economic Zone of the country, where the foreign fleet is located.

Another idea is to declare marine protected areas, such as the Galápagos-Isla del Coco corridor, to block the entry of these boats to the Ecuadorian coastal zone, both from the north and from the south.

If this is achieved, says Seville, it would be necessary to provide some facility to national fishing companies, which guarantees the supply of resources, but third parties would not be allowed to enter the area.

The group includes representatives of entities such as the Ministries of Production, Foreign Trade, Investment and Fisheries; Defense, Environment and Water, and Foreign Relations and Human Mobility. These will be in charge of carrying out the negotiations with the other countries involved.

Sevilla recalls that both he and Kakabadse have extensive experience in the field of conservation, having worked in organizations that operate around the world such as the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature. (IUCN). The goal is to use this experience to achieve greater protection for Galapagos and Ecuadorian waters.

This content has been originally published by Diario EL COMERCIO at the following address:

Informing and sharing news on marine life, flora, fauna and conservation in the Galápagos Islands since 2017
© SOS Galápagos, 2021


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