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Sustainable Seaweed Production

Belize’s biodiversity is exposed to various direct anthropogenic and natural threats system.

Over the last three decades the forest cover in Belize has decreased steadily due to the expansion of economic activities, such as large-scale agriculture and aquaculture. Rapid and uncontrolled coastal development has resulted in increased habitat loss in the coastal zone. It is estimated that about 75-80% of all coastal land in Belize has been purchased for the development of tourism and residential areas, posing a serious threat to mangroves, coastal wetlands, and other coastal ecosystems (Young, 2008). Overfishing and illegal fishing continue to put stress on the ecosystems.

To reduce fishing pressures in and around the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, the UNDP implemented GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP) provided technical

and financial support to the Placencia Producers Cooperative Society Limited (PPCSL), under a special initiative called the Community Management of Protected Areas Conservation (COMPACT) co-financed by the United Nations Foundation. The project introduced local fishers and tour guides to sustainable seaweed production, provided technical assistance, procured necessary materials, and established seaweed farms. The first project focused on the area in Placencia and the second project was implemented to expand the intiative in Gladden Spit and Silk Cayes Marine Reserve.

The local community provided support in ensuring that all activities such as preparation of ropes, buoys, anchors, and the transportation of materials to sites were carried out properly. Community members also participated in focus group meetings and were actively involved in the planting and monitoring of the seaweed farms as well as in seaweed harvesting. As a result of the community involvement, 43 seaweed farms were established, doubling the original 20 seaweed farms envisioned in the two project proposals.

 Download Full Case Study.pdf (603.9 KB)

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Toward a Blue Economy: A Promise for Sustainable Growth in the Caribbean

This report attempts to quantify the current ocean economy in the region and summarize projections about where we may find new pockets of sustainable growth, and define the blue economy concepts an

d possible policy responses that might better align economic growth and environmental health in the Caribbean.

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25 August 2016 - The Humboldt Current is one of the world´s most productive Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs), representing approximately 6% of the global fish catch in 2015

25 August 2016 - The Humboldt Current is one of the world´s most productive Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs), representing approximately 6% of the global fish catch in 2015 (an El Niño year) and gener­ating goods and services of around $20 billion annually. In 2015 total annual landings in Chile and Peru were approximately 5.8 million tonnes, of which about 70% were harvested in Peruvian waters. For the last five years Chile and Peru have been assisted by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) through the The Humboldt Current Large Marine Ecosystem (HCLME) Project.

The Humboldt Current extends along the Coast of Chile and Peru and its cold and nutrient-rich waters support one of the world´s largest fisheries, the Anchovy. The anchovy fisheries in this ecosystem are of national, regional and global significance. It is estimated that more than 1,000 fish species depend on the Humboldt Current within their life cycles. The fishmeal and essential oils generated from the anchovy are a primary food source for farmed fish, an increasingly important component of global food security (aquaculture now accounts for roughly half all of seafood consumed on earth). This fishery generates important local employment opportunities and income for artisanal fisherfolk, men and women, and its significant economic value provides a strong incentive to sustain the fishery and to ensure current catch levels do not compromise future harvests. But a range of anthropogenic activities are exerting pressure on this unique ecosystem. The top four threats are overfishing, pollution, coastal development, and resource exploration.

At present 98% of the anchovy catch goes towards indirect human consumption by means of fishmeal and oil inputs to livestock feeds, mainly pigs and fish. The HCLME Project has actively promoted the direct human consumption of anchovy, either as a cured salted product or as a protein powder to be added to cakes and bread. The initiative has also promoted the Ecosystem Based Management Approach to fisheries management and has brought Chilean and Peruvian scientists together to work towards standardized stock assessment methodologies and a coordinated approach to the straddling stock management.

On August 9, 2016, several ministries from both countries signed the Strategic Action Programme (SAP) for the Humboldt Current LME. The signing was designed to promote a multi-sectoral approach to the management of the area. The Project carried out an in-depth analysis of the problems facing the LME, identifying their root causes, and has five main objectives. READ MORE: http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/presscenter/pressreleases/2016/08/25/chile-and-peru-sign-landmark-agreement-to-sustain-world-s-largest-single-species-fishery.html