Representatives from six Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) attended an annual gathering last week (June 11-14) on the Grenadine Island of Mustiques to contemplate actions to strengthen reef management in the Grenadines.
This is the fourth consecutive year the meeting, organized by Sustainable Grenadines Inc., was held. Members of the network include Tobago Cayes Marine Park, St. Vincent’s South Coast Marine Conservation Area, Mustique Marine Conservation Area, Sandy Island/Oyster Bed Marine Protected Area, Moliniere-Beausejour Marine Protected Area and Woburn/Clarke’s Court Marine Protected Area. Representatives from government departments in both countries, the University of the West Indies and St George’s University and The Nature Conservancy were among the other participants.
Mr. Martin Barriteau, Executive Director of Sustainable Grenadines Inc., explained, “By acting as a network, the members seek to achieve their objectives of conservation and the sustainable use of marine resources more effectively as a group than any one individual marine park could otherwise achieve on their own.”
The six MPAs have shared information and collaborated to promote the conservation and sustainable use of marine resources that are so important to local communities and to local livelihoods since 2011. Presently the health of coastal and marine resources in the Grenadines will be jointly monitored by the network.
“This means that each marine protected area agreed to setup and collect data on permanent sites which they will monitor in the long term. With this information, the network will be able to produce annual reports on the status of marine and coastal resources across the Grenadines, which will help to highlight the most important needs and concerns, and show progress made,” commented Mr. Barriteau.
“It’s an achievement and a milestone in our collaboration together.”
The meeting was hosted by the Mustique Company Ltd. and sponsored by the US National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The participants discussed sustainable fisheries practices with local fishers in addition to their meeting sessions. They also gave short talks for local school children about the marine environment.For more informaiton please contact Sustainable Grenadines Inc., Clifton, Union Island, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Tel/Fax: # (784) 485 – 8779. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org