Climate-Smarting Marine Protected Areas and Coastal Management in the Mesoamerican Reef Region
As of: September 2021
The coastal and marine resources of the Mesoamerican reef provide protection and a livelihood for two million people, mainly through fishing and tourism. However, the resources are under severe threat from the negative effects of climate change. The project strengthens the adaptive capacities of coastal communities in the region. Together with the municipalities, it identifies options and measures for adapting to climate change, using science-based methods such as ecological risk analysis and the modelling of ecosystem services. Building on this, the project integrates adaptation strategies into coastal development and management plans for marine protected areas, and implements adaptation measures in other selected areas. The development of expertise and technical skills is supported, as is the development and implementation of local and national adaptation strategies and the regional sharing of information on successfully tested adaptation approaches.
State of implementation/results
- A first regional workshop to analyse climate risks with representatives from political partners, subcontractors and key target groups was carried out between November 14th -15th, 2018, in Belize City, Belize.
- A series of Climate talk workshops were carried out in 2019 in Belize (Northern Planning Region February 16th; South Central Planning Region February 2st and March 15th; and Southern Planning Region February 20th), Guatemala (in the Multiple Purpose Protected Area Río Sarstún, February 8th, and March 3rd and on March 5tha workshop was also carried out with regional authorities of Livingston, Puerto Barrios and Izabal) to engage community member s and MPA stakeholders in discussions on local risks and impacts from climate change on ecosystem services and livelihoods.
- In August 2019 two regional workshops: presented and discussed the draft findings of the climate and ecosystem service analyses undertaken over the past year one in Mérida, Mexico (August 21st - 23rd, 2019), and one in Puerto Cortes, Honduras (August 26th - 28th, 2019)
- A half-day in-person training session for the Training of Trainers (ToT) initiative was held during the final day of both workshops. This ToT training focused on training participants to run the InVEST (Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Trade-offs, naturalcapitalproject.stanford.edu/…) coastal vulnerability model.
- Three online training sessions were carried out between July and August 2019 covering the topics 1) ecosystem service and ecosystem-based adaptation concepts and applications, 2) how to use results from ecosystem service models to inform planning for coastal risk reduction, and 3) a technical introduction to the InVEST ecosystem service models.
- At CBD COP 14 (15-29 November 2018 in Egypt) during the side event ‘Marine Biodiversity – Creating and Exchanging Solutions for our Blue World: Reflections and Lessons Learned from International Climate Initiative Projects for Achieving the Aichi Targets and the 2050 Vision for Biodiversity’ the project was presented in the frame of a poster session.
- The project was presented in Belize during the annual ‘Reef Week ‘(8-17th March, 2019) at the WWF Booth at the Reef Fair.
- The project websites in Spanish and English are accessible under the following links: Spanish version: www.wwfca.org/… ; English version: www.wwfca.org/…
- Up to date the project has issued and distributed two newsletters in English and Spanish to reach key audiences within the four countries that share the Mesoamerican Reef System, as well as other audiences abroad. The newsletters can be accessed as follows: 1st edition (June 2019): Spanish: www.wwfca.org/… ; English: www.wwfca.org/… 2nd edition (September 2019): Spanish: www.wwfca.org/… ; English: www.wwfca.org/…