Deterioration of marine ecosystems is altering the regulation of global climate carried out by the ocean, which absorbs over 25 percent of CO2 emissions and 90 percent of excess heat caused by global warming.
Amid the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP26) held in Glasgow on Tuesday, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, and Panama agreed to implement mechanisms for the conservation of the Corridor of the Eastern Tropical Pacific (CMAR), which is a regional initiative for the sustainable use of environmental resources in force since 2004.
This agreement will create the largest marine biosphere reserve in the Western Hemisphere through the interconnection of the Coco Island National Park and the Submarine Mountains Marine Management Area (Costa Rica), the Galapagos Marine Reserve (Ecuador), the Malpelo Fauna and Flora Sanctuary (Colombia), and the Coiba National Park and Managed Resources Area (Panama).
Scientific research has shown that these ecosystems are related to each other because their waters operate as biological corridors and transit zones for sharks, tuna, turtles, rays, whales, and other migratory species.
At the signing of the agreement, Presidents Ivan Duque (Colombia), Carlos Alvarado (Costa Rica), Guillermo Lasso (Ecuador) and Laurentino Cortizo (Panama) pledged to expand their countries' marine protected areas by tens of thousands of square kilometers.
Actus Mer/Sea News: The Eastern Tropical Pacific Marine Corridor (CMAR): The Emergence of a Voluntary Regional Cooperation Mechanism for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine Biodiversity Within a Fragmented Regional Ocean Governance Landscape… https://t.co/r5KiQEGQ4J pic.twitter.com/sEQ42QcvND— Jerome OLLIER (@JeromeOLLIER) June 2, 2021
"This agreement represents an extraordinary gift to the planet because it is an area incredibly rich in biodiversity," Panama Foreign Affairs Minister Erika Mouynes said and exemplified CMAR importance by pointing out that five of the seven species of sea turtles pass through its waters.
These four Latin American countries will contribute to the conservation of environmental commons at a time when deterioration of ecosystems is altering the regulation of global climate carried out by the ocean, which absorbs over 25 percent of CO2 emissions and 90 percent of excess heat caused by global warming. For this reason, scientists hope that governments will complete the negotiations of the International Waters Treaty until March 2022.
During COP26, environmental activists also signed the Declaration "Because the Ocean," which asks the signatory countries of the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate to implement measures to promote clean energy on the high seas and recognize the link between the ocean, the climate, and biodiversity.