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World: Ecuador Enlarges Galapagos Marine

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Le président équatorien Guillermo Lasso inaugure la réserve marine élargie des Galápagos en compagnie de l'ancien président américain Bill Clinton et du président colombien Ivan Duque à bord du navire de recherche Sierra Negra sur l'île de Santa Cruz le 14 janvier 2022 © Rodrigo Buendia Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso inaugurates the Galapagos Extended Marine Reserve with former US President Bill Clinton and Colombian President Ivan Duque aboard the search vessel Sierra Negra on the island of Santa Cruz on January 14, 2022

The Ecuador has officially enlarged Friday by almost 60% of the Galapagos Marine reserve, paradise of biodiversity in the Pacific Ocean, has noted AFP.

On board a scientific boat from Galapagos National Park (PNG), wetting off Santa Cruz Island (one of the five islands of the archipelago), Ecuador President Guillermo Lasso signed the creative decree A new nature reserve baptized "fraternity".

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This marine reserve of 60.000 km2 is added to the reserve of 138,000 km2 existing since March 1998, famous for its turtles and its very rich marine wildlife.

The Ecuadorian archipelago, which inspired the theory of the evolution of the English naturalist Charles Darwin, now has 198,000 km2 of protected marine zone.

The creation of "Fraternity" is a "clear message in the world," said Mr. Lasso on this occasion. It is a new relationship with the Earth, a new way of understanding what the progress of humanity means ", he assured.

Colombian President Ivan Duque and former US President Bill Clinton attended the event, as well as representatives of the governments of Costa Rica and Panama.

The new reservation, north of the archipelago, extends to the Costa Rica maritime border. It forms a marine corridor that connects to the protected area of ​​Cocos (Costa Rica), following a natural hallway of marine wildlife migration.

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The protected areas of the Malpelo Islands (Colombia) and Coiba (Panama) must be added to create a cross-border marine biosphere reserve, which will then be an industrial fishing-free area over 500,000 km2, in waters. where evolves sea turtles, whales, sharks and manta rays.

- "Vital Need" -

This new reserve "will guarantee the survival of 40% of the marine species of the world," said Colombian president.

"We are perhaps a small territory (...) But the planet is also ours," pleaded President Lasso, who had announced the creation of this new protected era at Glasgow COP26 in Scotland last November, in exchange for a reduction of its international debt.

"The seas are large global climate regulators," he added, stressing that "take care of them is not a naive idealism, it is a vital necessity".

The archipelago of the Galapagos, which owes its name to endemic giant turtles that live there, is located at 1,000 km from the coast of Ecuador and classified World Heritage and World Biosphere Reserve for its unique flora and fauna.

This area, protected and industrial fishing is prohibited, is the second largest in the world and has more than 2,900 marine species.

In March 2016, Ecuador had created an additional sanctuary of 38,000 km2 in the Galapagos to protect the shark-hammer (sphynridae), a threatened species.

SP-PLD / MR / HBA / MLB

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