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Ecuador Expands Marine Park Around the Galapagos Islands

Ecuador Expands Marine Park Around the Galapagos Islands

by Vanessa Buschschluter - BBC News

Link to Full Article --> BBC News Article

    

Conservationists have welcomed the announcement by Ecuador that it will expand the marine reserve around the Galapagos islands by 60,000 sq km.

 

President Guillermo Lasso announced the move at the COP 26 climate summit in Glasgow. Mr. Lasso told the BBC that his government wanted to show that action rather than words was the most effective way to fight climate change. Conservationists called it "a brilliant first step". The existing marine protected area around the Galapagos measures 133,000 sq km and was one of the first large-scale marine conservation areas to be created. It is one of the most productive marine ecosystems in the world. Conservationists hope that its expansion will protect the migration routes of endangered species such as the whale shark and make the reserve more resilient to climate change.

 

Among those praising the move is Sarah Darwin, the great-great-granddaughter of biologist Charles Darwin, whose theory of evolution was inspired by the biodiversity he found on the Galapagos. Sarah, a botanist and an ambassador for the Galapagos Conservation Trust, told the BBC that she was "very, very excited that President Lasso is taking the Galapagos so seriously".

 

"We're really looking forward to taking further conservation measures forward with him both in the marine reserve and the islands themselves," she said. "This is a real commitment, I think." But the CEO of the Galapagos Conservation Trust, Sharon Johnson, said it was important that the resources be put in place to adequately protect the newly enlarged reserve. In 2020, a huge number of Chinese fishing boats were spotted in waters off the Galapagos with conservationists accusing the fleet of "pillaging" the area for squid.


   

President Lasso denied that the expansion of the marine reserve was a response to the Chinese fleet's movements, insisting it was "an autonomous decision of the Ecuadorean government". Mr. Lasso said that in his most recent conversation with the Chinese president he sensed "a clear commitment to respect Ecuador's maritime" and that he, therefore, hoped there would be no repeat of the scenes which had played out in 2020. He added that his government would swap debt for conservation to create a fund that would allow Ecuador to beef up navy patrols to protect the area and to provide artisanal fishermen working outside the marine reserve with support. 

 

The Galapagos and the seas surrounding them are a unique ecosystem home to whales, turtles, and tuna, explain Prof Sandy Tudhope and Dr. Meriwether Wilson from the University of Edinburgh. The fact that they are so rich in commercially important species is also what makes them so attractive to fishermen, say the two scientists, who were part of the team whose research underpinned the decision to expand the reserve.


Check out our Galapagos Liveaboards -->  Ecuador Liveaboards


Our thanks to Vanessa Buschschluter - BBC News for this article. Full article HERE.


      

Calipso Galapagos Liveaboard - 2021 Discount $1700 Off All Year - Dive Adventure

Calipso Galapagos Liveaboard

2021 Discount $1700 Off All Year

                                    

This is a bucket list destination and a super discounted deal. You can book any of the available charter dates throughout 2021 and get a $1700 USD per person discount. Also get FREE nitrox and a 1-night stay in Quito or Guayaquil for ease of transit. These dates must be booked before February 14, 2021.

  • Jan 14th to July 8th, 2021: was $5495 now $3795 p.p
  • From July 8th to Dec 31st, 2021: was $5696 now $3995 p.p

                                 




Galapagos Master Liveaboard - March 2021 - 30% Discount - Dive Travel Adventure

Galapagos Master Liveaboard 

March 2021 - 30% Discount

Dive Travel "Bucket List" Adventure

                                     

We have cabins available on the Galapagos Master Liveaboard for March 2021 with a 30% discount. Travel dates and rates are as follows:

  • 01 - 08 March 2021   7 Days  Was $6150, now $4305 USD
  • 08 - 15 March 2021   7 Days  Was $6150, now $4305 USD
  • 15 - 22 March 2021   7 Days  Was $6150, now $4305 USD
  • 22 March - 01 April 2021   10 days Was $7820, now $5474 USD
Rates are per person double occupancy. Other fees: 
  • Marine Park & Port Fees: $100 USD Galapagos National Park Fees (upon your arrival in the San Cristóbal)
  • Tourist Card: $25 USD (before boarding your domestic flights to the Galapagos visit the INGALA booth at Guayaquil airport)
  • Chamber Support Fee: $35 USD

                                 

The Galápagos Islands are an Ecuadorian archipelago of volcanic islands straddling the equator about 970 km west of continental Ecuador. The Galapagos are a UNESCO World Heritage site, an official Ecuadorian province, an Ecuadorian National Park as well as a biological marine reserve.

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