Belize and Australia exchange experiences on barrier reef conservation and World Heritage Site management

Belizer Barrier Reef. Image: Nancy Gerard Bégin
Biodiversity

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is the largest is the world’s largest coral reef system. The Belize Barrier Reef is part of the world’s second largest coral reef system, the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System (also known as the Great Mayan Reef).  Both the Great Barrier Reef and the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System are World Heritage Sites. Recently, representatives from Belize and Australia met to exchange experiences and good practices for the management of their respective World Heritage properties:

A high-level delegation from Belize visited Australia’s Great Barrier Reef from November 26 to 30, 2018, to exchange best practices on leveraging their reef’s iconic World Heritage status, to protect their fragile ecosystems from climate impacts and secure sustainable livelihoods, jobs and income for local communities.

The visit follows a series of landmark conservation actions that led to the removal of the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System from the List of World Heritage in Danger earlier this year.

As the world’s most extensive coral reef ecosystem, the Great Barrier Reef is a globally outstanding and significant entity. It was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1981 and covers an area larger than Italy. The Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System is one of the most pristine reef ecosystems in the Western Hemisphere and was referred to as “the most remarkable reef in the West Indies” by Charles Darwin. It was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1996.

Central to [the] discussion was an exchange of best practices in building sustainable reef communities. Both World Heritage sites share a desire to step up their leadership in building reef strategies that protect these fragile ecosystems in a rapidly changing climate but simultaneously secure sustainable income for the communities that depend on them.

For more, read the full article at Caribbean News Now

Previously on Green Antilles: Belize Barrier Reef removed from World Heritage ‘threatened’ list.

[Image: Nancy Girard Bégin]

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