Galapagos Marine iguana

Opening of new marine reserve in Galapagos announced

Galapagos Marine iguana

The President of Ecuador, Guillermo Lasso, made an ambitious declaration on the opening day of the COP26 Summit in Glasgow, Scotland and announced a new marine reserve for the Galapagos Islands. The announcement came at the most relevant climate change event in front of world leaders and influential stakeholders and will extend one of the largest marine reserves in the world toward Costa Rica and, in turn, protect a feeding and migration area for endangered species.

“Ecuador’s announcement is a first step in addressing some of these conservation objectives. If placed correctly, the 30,000 km2 no-take zone, and adjacent longline exclusion areas, will provide critically endangered hammerhead sharks and other threatened marine species, with a migratory “Swimway.” This will allow them to move from Darwin Island to the borders of Ecuador’s territory, without encountering fishing gear.

The onus is now on Costa Rica to provide the same level of protection for the rest of their journey to Cocos Island and beyond. Moving towards a sustainable society in the Eastern Tropical Pacific will require strong commitments from Ecuador, Costa Rica and our neighboring countries,” said Hearn, one of the team leaders of research