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Proposal to convert Mexican Caribbean into biosphere reserve

Cancun, Q.R. – State ecology officials have made a proposal that would see a large portion of the state’s coast converted into a biosphere reserve.

The proposal to convert the Mexican Caribbean into a biosphere reserve would allow Quintana Roo to become the state would the largest protected natural area in the country. One immediate benefit to this would be establishing better control over economic activities in the region, including clearer regulations and less environmental damage.

Rafael Muñoz Berzunza, Secretary of Ecology and Environment for the state, has reported that the National Commission for Natural Protection (Conanp) has made available a study that justifies the issuance of the decree.

“The project takes into consideration the coastal and marine areas around the towns of Lazaro Cardenas, Isla Mujeres and Benito Juarez. It also includes the coastal portion adjoining the eastern boundary of Tulum National Park and the marine portion facing the municipalities of Puerto Morelos, Tulum, Solidaridad and Cozumel as well as areas located east of the Biosphere Reserve and Sian Ka’an Reefs to the Municipality of Felipe Carrillo Puerto and the marine portion around the towns of Bacalar and Othon P. Blanco.”

He adds that, “In these municipalities there are 11 protected areas. The proposed biosphere reserve for the Mexican Caribbean incorporates all these protected regions all the way to Yum Balam.”

There was no announcement as to when a final decision about turning the region into a biosphere reserve would be made.

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