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#472759 - 09/18/13 11:36 AM Belize and Guatemala Protect CHIQUIBUL-MOPAN-MACAL
Marty Offline

BELIZE AND GUATEMALA SIGN JOINT AGREEMENT FOR PROTECTION OF CHIQUIBUL-MOPAN-MACAL AND BELIZE WATERSHEDS

On Saturday, September 14, officials from Belize and Guatemala signed a joint agreement for the protection of the Chiquibul-Mopan-Macal and Belize watersheds.

More than 40 human settlements in Belize and more than 130,000 inhabitants depend on these water resources for household activities, farming, recreation, drinking water, hydroelectricity and a healthy environment, the signatories acknowledge. Likewise, more than 75 human settlements in Guatemala and more than 100,000 inhabitants are dependent upon the Chiquibul and Mopan Rivers.

In particular, the watersheds are deemed to be vital to the ecology, economy, food security and public health of the people of east central Peten, Guatemala and the central region of Belize, and it harbors a rich wildlife reservoir, as well as a history of the ancient Maya civilization and cultural diversity, the officials noted in the joint agreement.

“With the signing of this agreement, the 19 leaders commit themselves to undertake cleanup campaigns, reforestation and education activities; and to promote conservation activities and cooperation, exclusively for the protection and preservation of the shared watersheds,” said Rafael Manzanero, executive director of Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD), which spearheaded this initiative.

The Belizean local authorities committed to “promote cooperation with authorities from Guatemala, exclusively for the protection and preservation of the shared watersheds, and as a result will facilitate working mechanisms as well as coordinate local actions that lead to a serious, honorable and friendly work.”

The Commonwealth of Municipalities of Southern Petén (MANMUNISURP) as well as the Municipality of Melchor de Mencos and the Community Development Councils (COCODES) reciprocated the commitment for the Guatemalan side.

“The communities committed to this initiative for the period 2013-2016 include 19 alcaldes, town mayors and community development council leaders from Arenal (Belize), Benque Viejo del Carmen, San Jose Succotz, Calla Creek, Bullet Tree Falls, Cristo Rey, San Ignacio, Santa Elena, Santa Familia, Esperanza, Arenal (Guatemala), Melchor de Mencos, Cidabenque, La Polvora, Crizadero, Salpet, Los Encuentros, Santa Rosa Chiquibul, Puertas del Cielo Chiquibul and El Tikalito,” Manzanero reported.

This joint agreement renews the first agreement reached in 2010 among 18 community leaders from both Belize and Guatemala.

“This agreement signed by all 19 community leaders is also endorsed and signed by the president of the Commonwealth of Municipalities of Southern Petén (MANMUNISURP), Sergio Diaz; the alcalde of Melchor de Mencos, Ricardo Avila, and Friends for Conservation and Development’s executive director, Rafael Manzanero”, the FCD informed.

FCD received financial support from the British Embassy for this initiative.

Amandala


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#473851 - 10/02/13 11:47 AM Re: Belize and Guatemala Protect CHIQUIBUL-MOPAN-MACAL [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Chiquibul-Maya Mountain Biosphere Reserve to Be Protected Through Multi-Stakeholder Involvement

Friends for Conservation and Development’s, FCD, counterpart organizations, Asociacion Balam and the National Council on Protected Areas, CONAP, were on a three day visit in Washington D.C. last week. The visit came after an invitation was extended by the US Department of the Interior with the goal for Asociacion Balam and CONAP to describe the lessons learnt and success stories reached in their efforts to protect the Maya Biosphere Reserve and the Chiquibul-Maya Mountains Biosphere Reserve. The US Department of the Interior, the US State Department and the US Agency for International Development have been financing conservation projects for these institutions in northern Peten. FCD was invited due to the fact that Asociacion Balam and CONAP are replicating the implementation of a Round table Multi-Sectoral strategy which includes the government, private and NGO sectors in the planning and decision making process for managing the Chiquibul-Maya Mountain Biosphere Reserve. The meeting aims to put a vibrant governance program in the biosphere reserve through a multi stakeholder involvement process which helps protect biodiversity and promote regional security. FCD’s Executive Director, Rafael Manzanero formed part of the trip from the 25th to 27th of September. Two days prior to Manzanero’s visit, Chiquibul National Park Manager, Derric Chan joined the same team on a trip to Huntsville, Alabama where they visited the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and learnt about the most up to date GIS technology.

LOVEFM


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