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UNESCO Increases the Area of the Galapagos Biosphere Reserve

June 24, 2019

Green sea turtle by Carlos Palma

The Ecuadorian Ministry of Environment announced today that the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) approved an extension of the Galapagos Biosphere Reserve area from 772,000 hectares — so designated in 1984 — to 14.6 million hectares. This decision makes the Biosphere Reserve one of the largest marine areas in the world.

According to Galapagos National Park ranger Danny Rueda, this will allow the Ministry of Environment to foster mechanisms to preserve the ecosystem and biological diversity, strengthen sustainable economic and human development of the local population, and provide logistical support for related educational and environmental research projects.

The next steps following this designation will be the creation of a management plan and committee for the Biosphere Reserve, which will provide guidance to the authorities of the local communities.

Based on a release from the Galapagos National Park Directorate, translated with their permission.

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