2. Major Environmental Issues This analysis is supported by the interactive work carried out in communnity meetings and interviews with the ejido workers, government officers, businessmen, academicians, etc. The basis data are found in several documents among which are: the State Territorial Ordinance Program (“Programa Estatal de Ordenamiento Territorial”), the aquaculture and fisheries sectorial program (“Programa Sectorial Acuacultura y Pesca, 2001- 2006”), and the guidelines for the State development plan (“Lineamientos para el Plan Estatal de Desarrollo, Baja California Sur 1999-2005”). A general vision of this information shows that the most frequent coincidences as to the environmental major issues is focused in four main axes: 1) Limited availability of groundwater and the problems resulting from its irrational use and waste. Perception that this factor is different in the rural and urban zones. 2) Different types and degrees of environmental contamination of antropical origin: rubble, miscellaneous solid waste, agrochemicals, oil and fuel, tires, machinery junk, waste from slaughterhouses (mainly from squid fishery developments), etc. The origin and effect of these agents on the water resource (continental and marine), show a different dimension and composition, both at the macro and micro-regional scales, but with greater problems in the coastal zone. Industrial contamination can be considered “moderate” as it is mainly limited to two thermoelectric power stations of the state (López Mateos in Bahía Magdalena, and Punta Prieta in La Paz), and to some canning facilities (Pichilingue, Santa Rosalía and Puerto San Carlos). 3) Wrongful and abusive use of the soil and bodies of water in environmentally aggressive projects with little or no positive impact on the community. 4) Inhabitants and decision-makers lack of knowledge about the state’s natural capital. There are practically no programs for a balanced management and the ones being prepared offer little or no variability in the sustainable development integral projects. Ground and Marine Waters: Use and Constraints Baja California Sur is considered to be an arid to semi-arid zone with low rainfall. The rainy season is relatively short with intermitent torrential-like rains, which occasionally elicit intense fluvial and erosional phenomena.1 When rain conditions are combined with the physical and topographic characteristics of the peninsular soil, it is clear that recharging the water tables is limited in time and insufficient in volume, mainly on the Gulf slopes. This is true despite the fact that Baja California Sur gets the largest amount of cyclones in the entire Mexican Pacific and the country. As a consequence of the torrential rains and erodable soils, the effect is extreme sedimentation and reductions in groundwater recharge rates. Limited groundwater is of concern to government and civic leaders alike. The state’s total consumption is estimated to be of 500 to 650 million m³ per annum, out of which 5% comes from surface waters and 0.1% from the few desalination plants operating on the coast. The rest (95%) is extracted from the aquifers.2 1 Idem., p. 14. / Emigdio Z. Flores, Op. Cit., p. 211. 2 State Gov., PEOT, Op. Cit., p. 10. The state Territorial Ordinance Program (PEOT) specifies that 60% of Baja California Sur’s territory lacks sufficient ground or surface hydraulic resources that are available for exploitation. The areas of exploitation account for 35% of the state’s territory, but have already been overexploited in almost all cases; only 4% of the territory can withstand increased (limited) extraction.3 The effects of irrational pumping (depletion and saline intrusion) and pollution4 are mainly associated with the growth of the agricultural areas and human settlements, as well as increased demands from second home development and tourism infrastructure, including golf courses and resort hotels,. Several attempts have been made to establish desalination plants in the state, but the results have not been convincing with regard to meeting potable water supply needs at an urban scale. However, this strategy has solved part of the issues regarding water scarcity in some of the isolated coastal communities, although the cost and specialized maintenance required for machinery and equipment constrain the continuance and expansion of these services. This is especially true in La Paz, where the skeletons of two large desalination plants (facing the Palmira Marina and San Juan Nepomuceno) are silent witnesses of the failure of these projects. There is a generalized concern for the high level of wasted water in highly dense urban areas, as well as and in the large hotel zones. In the former, water needs exceed water supply by 20% or more in some municipalities.5 Aging infrastructure, poor distribution networks, and irresponsible water use are the main culprits behind wasted 3 Idem., p. 11. 4 Emigdio Z. Flores, Op. Cit., p. 3-4. 5 H. Ayuntamiento de Comondú. Municipal Development Plan, 2002-2005, p. 8-12. / H. VIII Los Cabos Municpality. Municipal Development Plan, 2002-2005, pp. 60-61. water.6 In the hotel zones, which are much newer, proliferation of golf courses and swimming pools in the current hotel developments (and those under construction) is a prerequisite, despite limited water supplies. It is particularly noteworthy that in Los Cabos, water distribution tends to favor tourist resorts, while supply is not enough to meet the local population’s demand. The water déficit in Cabo San Lucas is close to 30% - the highest in the state.7 Surprisingly, in La Paz the water scarcity problem is considered to be secondary8. In addition to overall depletion of water supplies in the municipality, aquifers currently also have increased saline intrusion.9 The municipal government has decided to recondition some of the ejido wells of El Centenario to supply water to the city.10 Despite these measures, water-intensive real estate complexes and tourist resorts continue to be proposed, approved, and built (e.g., El Mogote, Costa Baja, Bahía de Los Sueños, Balandra, Tecolote, Caleritas-Coyote). In rural areas, the use of water is mainly focused on agricultural irrigation. Over- exploitation and agrochemical contamination are two aspects that have resulted from the continued use of an outdated agricultural model, which has also resulted in reduced crop productivity.11 The crop selection has also changed as a consequence of limited water supplies, from highly-subsidized export products such as cotton ─ which in the seventies 6 Meetings held at: Cabo San Lucas, Loreto, Guerrero Negro, Santa Rosalía./ Panorama Informativo, newscast. Promomedios California. Host: Miguel Ángel Ojeda, April 15, 2004, interview with Ing. Lorenzo Arriñaga, Manager of CNA-BCS. 7 VIII Town Council of Los Cabos. Municipal Plan, Op. Cit. p. 60-61. 8 (Community meeting at La Paz, June 1st, 2004. 9 Panorama Informativo newscast Op. Cit., April 15, 2004, interview with Ing. Lorenzo Arriñaga, Manager of CNA-BCS. 10 Panorama Informativo newscast Op. Cit., February 19, 2004, interview with Prof. Víctor Guluarte, La Paz Mayor 11 José Urciaga-García, Rasgos fundamentales de la modernización agrícola en BCS de 1900 a 1991 (Fundamental features for the modernization of agricultura in BCS) Thesis for a Master’s Degree in Science, UABCS, La Paz, 1992. consumed a great amount of water in the Santo Domingo Valley ─ to other more profitable crops aimed at other markets (chickpeas, orchards and vegetables). The products consumed domestically (wheat and safflower among others) were changed to sorghum and alfalfa, which prevail to date. Although exotic crops demand excessive water, their commercial value is high in the international market, and therefore, they continue to be grown, despite limitations in water resources. Current and projected land use in the state’s coastal zone is crticial to determining how marine and land (oases) water resources can be maintained sustasinably over time. Certain types of developments tend to have an impact on large sectors of the coast and protected bodies of water, which prevent other economic alternatives. The hoarding of the territory for tourist infrastructure, the influence of contaminating industries (thermoelectric plants, canning facilities, and saline and mining removal industries), and the development of some aquaculture methods (white shrimp, large carnivorous freshwater fish), can hamper riverside fishing and the recreational use of public beaches. Contamination of Groundwater and Marine Resources Both the origin and the effects of contamination on groundwater have relatively similar characteristics in the rural and urban areas, although their perception by civic and elected leaders is different. For example, not much is known about the existence of this problem in rural areas; only one out of 25 ejido leaders that were interviewed mentioned agrochemical contamination but considers it “normal”.12 On the other hand, most of the ejido leaders interviewed expressed great concern about solid waste contamination due to 12 Interview with Antonio Avilés, President of the ejido commissariat of Todos Santos, La Paz, October 6, 2004. industrial waste (canning facilities), garbage, sewage and burnt oil, but did not equate this contamination with water pollution. This indicates that they assume that groundwater is not affected by what could happen “on top”. In addition, there is evidence that fecal and arsenic contamination is occurring in groundwater wells, mainly in small, rural communities in Baja California Sur. Arsenic, when consumed over a period of 5-10 years can cause cancer and diabetes. During 2004, ”Engineers for a Better World” at the University of California-Berkeley conducted tests in 24 communities, finding that 34% were contaminated above the federal drinking water standards.13 This study was expanded to include 500 groundwater wells throughout the state in 2005; to date, 34 communities have arsenic-contaminated groundwater. Floride and saline contamination are also significant in terms of negative human health impacts. 14 Clearly, it is crucial that the water quality and water supply crisis be addressed. 15 Water contamination in the state’s urban areas is a recognized public concern. The public realizes that their groundwater, rivers, coastal and marine areas could be contaminated by industrial product waste and sewage. However, highly-dense urban areas are affected more than rural ones -- for example, the drainage infrastructure for Cabo San Lucas covers just 59% of the municipality, but is 100% in outlying municipal areas, such as Santiago, Miraflores and La Ribera.16 On the other hand, the poor condition of the distribution networks could occasionally cause urban drainage percolation into the potable water network.17 Finally, sanitary landfills, garbage dumps, and sewage stabilization ponds 13 “AguaSalud Project” report, http://ist-socrates.berkeley.edu/~rael/aguasalud/aguasalud.report.htm, 2004. 14 Ganster, Paul. Personal communication, January 3, 2006. 15 Gob. Del Estado de BCS, PEOT, Op. Cit., p. 11. 16 The municipal plan by the 8th City Council of Los Cabos. Municipal Plan of…, Op. Cit., pp. 62-63. 17 Panorama Informativo newscast Op. Cit., February 3, 2004. in urban areas are often impacted by torrential rains and other natural disasters, causing seasonal damage to rivers and marine areas. In the coastal zones and the marine environment, contamination is associated with the urban settlements, the areas for commercial fishing and tourism, and industrial plants to a lesser degree. This includes poor garbage management (organic and inorganic) and sewage, either directly (thermoelectric, canning plants, urban zone, hotels) or by stormwater runoff from areas with no sanitary services, flowing into the sea. The state government signed the Agreement for the Prevention, Control and Combating of Contamination of the Marine Environment due to waste water and other discharges into the sea, which four coastal states along the Gulf of California took part in after an initiative from the Navy. Inspection and surveillance actions are a major part of this agreement. As a result, agreements have also been signed with UABCS, CIBNOR, and the Interdisciplinary Marine Science Center (CICIMAR) to focus on sea bird and sea lion protection. The greatest threat is to the San José del Cabo estuary, which has been affected by nearby construction and water pollution to the maximum extent. Despite the impact on coastal and marine environment (and individual health) from other types of water contamination, garbage on the beaches is a very public and prevalent nuisance (used tires, casings, mechanical pieces, flexible plastic waste, miscellaneous containers, pieces of branches, and solid waste in general). Industrial liquid waste is also visible to the general public18, but mainly from burnt oil waste in mechanical and private shops. The large municipal landfills also continue to be a high priority -- the plagues of 18 Interview with Rodrigo Márquez Arellano, President of the Ejido Commissariat Gral. Melitón Albáñez, La Paz, Otober 6, 2004. flies, mosquitoes, rats, and domestic and street animals, as well as air polluttion from fires are visible public health threats. Waste from the fishery slaughterhouses is frequent in coastal zones throughout the state, but its volume is small because it coming mainly from small-scale, riverside fishing. However, in the oyster (catarina scallop and mano de león oyster) fisheries in the Pacific ocean and in the squid fishery in the Gulf of California, particularly Santa Rosalía where the fishng of cephalopod is practiced massively during certain seasons, the waste is disposed of directly on the beach and into the sea. In addition, trawl and flake fishing contribute considerably to organic contamination even though the fleet is relatively small. This practice is called “bycatch disposal”, defined as non-target fish, reptile, and marine mammal species that are thrown dead back into the sea. Although the Upper Gulf of California Biosphere Reserve is generally cited as the main are threatened by “bycatch disposal”, this could be a problem is areas such as the Magdalena-Almejas laguna complex, which concentrates 90% of the Baja California Sur’s shrimp fishing.19 Contamination that has resulted from increased tourism is more of an indirect problem that could potentially be solved through improved urban planning, regulatory enforcement, and updated infrastructure. For example, in the marinas of Cabo San Lucas and La Paz, oil, cleaning products, paint, and sewage are dumped overboard; these practices also occur offshore near the islands and in the secluded bays that are commonly used for anchorages and coastal fishing. 19 García Borbón et al. 1996 and Ramírez Rodríguez 1996, in Estudio del Potencial Pesquero y Acuícola de Baja California Sur (Study of the Fishery and Aquaculture Potentials in Baja California Sur) , Casas Valdéz, M. and G. Ponce Díaz (eds.), SEMARNAP, state Gov.. BCS, FAO, INP, UABCS, CIBNOR, CICIMAR, CETMAR. Mexico, 1996. The extraction of building material from coastal areas also destroys vegetation and destabilizes the slopes. In addition, trash and rubble piles have emerged near construction sites that are rarely cleaned up, affecting nearshore water flows, tidal zones, beach replenishment, and nursery areas for fish. The San José estuary, the oasis of Todos Santos and the Estero de Enfermería at La Paz are examples of coastal waters that have been damaged by poor building practices. There are approximately nine million used tires in and around La Paz, located in official and unofficial dumps. Regulations to the contrary aside, tires are imported on a daily basis from the U.S. that have been used and discarded. Sometimes, fires break out, creating toxic plumes that must burn themselves out because the local fire department does not have the proper equipment to extinguish them. They are also a breeding habitat for mosquitoes, the vector for dengue and hemorrhagic dengue.20 Examples exist in many places for recycling used tires, using them for playground surfaces, as a replacement for asphalt, and for recreational facilities and schools. Aquaculture projects have also been targeted in Baja California Sur as potential sources of marine pollution as well as coastal habitat destruction, probably because their operating characteristics are unknown and/or because their installation is quite recent. Great controversy remains in academic circles about the impact of shrimp and carnivorous fish farms, although the volume of information against the practice far exceeds support for it. Baja California Sur must approach aquaculture carefully, to ensure that its vibrant marine waters are not harmed. In fact, there is a long list of places that have suffered the damaging effects of these types of projects, including the Red Sea, where 20 Hambleton, Enrique. Personal communication, January 3, 2006. cages have irreversibly destroyed the coral reef; and in Ecuador, Panama, and Mexico, where shrimp farms have eliminated mangrove and wetland areas. Finally, there is evidence that there are repetitive attacks of viruses and patogenic infections to the target species (white shrimp). If carefully managed, aquaculture could be an attractive and economically viable option in Baja California Sur. The state has native species with high socio-economic potential, including 18 species of shellfish with high commercial maket value (par and aggregate) (oyster, scallops, mano de león oyster, abalone, pearl oyster, nacar shell, medium and large snails, etc.).21 The paradox is that during the last five years, initiatives to install white shrimp farms (Magdalena-Almejas and Bahía de La Paz) have been submitted by private businessmen, disregarding available native species that might be better suited to local environmental conditions. In addition, the state government and its research consultants are promoting the installation of yellowfin tuna, saurel, and sea bass farms in La Paz Bay, with foreign companies (Japanese, Canadian, and Israeli) that have restrictions on aquaculture in their region and are looking for investment opportunities in Mexico. Natural Resource and Land Use With changes to Article 27 in the Mexican constitution that provide ownership to ejiditarios of their communally-held lands, land speculation is growing in Baja California Sur. Indiscriminate coastal development is destroying large parts of the landscape, while at the same time, closing access to other development and recreational assets available to the 21 Mario Monteforte, “Cultivo de ostras perleras y perlicultura”( The cultivation of pearl oysters and pearl cultivation), in Estudio del Potencial Pesquero y Acuícola de Baja California Sur, Casas Valdéz, M. y G. Ponce Díaz (eds.), SEMARNAP, state gov. BCS, FAO, INP, UABCS, CIBNOR, CICIMAR, CETMAR. Mexico 1996. community. Gradual privatization and the growing exclusivity of coastal land in what is now known as “tourism corridors” have created tension in Los Cabos and La Paz. As in the case of the coastal areas, the benefits in the inland agricultural region are enjoyed by a few private players, while the day laborers (mostly immigrants) live under supervision in impoverished conditions. Land speculation is usually for tourism development, which requires local natural resources for construction. Forestry has not been well-regulated, and is intensifying, due to demand for construction. Mangrove trees, mesquite, fig, ditch reed, palm trees (both the trunk and palms), lapacho, desert ironwood, and highland grove are the target resources sought by real estate developers to build large-scale tourist resorts (hotels and residential complexes in marinas and on coastal land). In addition to the reduction in native trees, the gardens of these tourism complexes have a multitude of non-native flora that have been transplanted without any kind of qualitative control. Large-scale tourism developments are not the only culprit; deforestation is also occurring in rural areas, where mesquite is used for carbon production. In these mountain communities, the lack of employment has resulted in the uncontrolled felling of trees and other plants, causing a serious impact on the ecological situation. These activities require an enormous number of trees with which to produce carbon. With regard to terrestrial fauna, the Peninsular bighorn sheep and pronghorn antelope have been targeted for hunting permits, which provide financial benefits to permit holders in exchange for habitat management. At the present time, this situation favors intermediaries to the detriment of the local ejiditarios and ranch owners, who are working toward organizing themselves with the support of the SEMARNAT delegation in Baja California Sur. Problems Faced by the Different Players and Conservation Schemes As demonstrated in the sections above, the origin of the protected areas in Baja California Sur is as diverse as the environments in which they are focused, but they face similar challenges: insufficient budget; the indifference of some sectors of the population of the region, as well as public officials at state level; and the constant pressure from the devastating processes of economic growth. We consider that one of the biggest challenges at the moment that should be faced by the administrators and the nonprofits involved in this matter is to defeat the false idea that conservation is the enemy of development, and demonstrate that conservation is in fact an indispensable condition for development to take place in lasting, equilibrium and fair conditions. Another kind of problem regarding conservation, which is perceived to be an alternative social process, is the lack of financing and resources for the development of environmental nonprofits. There are many under-capitalized organizations in the state (many of which lack basic technical elements such as computers, archives, premises, Internet) with no access to international financing sources. The operating conditions of most local nonprofits are worsened by the lack of philanthropic culture in Mexico. As a result of these conditions, nonprofit organizations depend on the few governmental resources aimed at getting them involved in solving large and complex environmental problems and on their ability to obtain the voluntary involvement of members of the civil society. It can be understood that the launching and eventual continuity of large-scale development projects require a considerable amount of social effort. In some cases these projects have resulted in a radical transformation of the productive orientation of the regions. In other cases, the operating support required by these projects exceeds the regional capacity, both for basic resources and for infrastructure and logistics (for example, immigration of labor, handling of waste products, services, etc.), so provoking the current and/or future deterioration of different levels of the social and environmental equilibrium. The Maya corridor (in Quintana Roo state), the Bahías de Huatulco complex (Oaxaca state), the Los Cabos corridor (Baja California Sur) are a few examples of the many mistakes made in the name of development that exist in Mexican coastal areas. These resorts, which were previously beautiful coastal regions populated by fishermen, are now home to social inequality, prostitution, drug trafficking, poorly paid jobs, an insurmountable deficit of public services and a quality of life in growing deterioration. To these problems we can add severe environmental problems related to the misuse of natural resources and environmental aggression. As a consequence of the above, science and technology studies applied to the conservation and sustainable development are scarce in Baja California Sur. Although conservation initiatives should be based on information of this kind, which does in fact occur in many cases, the proposals lack real productive alternatives and fail to make use of the natural vocation of these areas. This seems to be due to the fact that not all specialists (in their respective fields of research) are open to altruistic participation, or believe that their efforts are not paid sufficiently with regard to the time dedicated to this task. This is obvious in the characteristics of the UMAs that have been created in the state, all of which are concentrated in some land fauna and flora species, while aquaculture has been practically forgotten. The lack of other alternatives could be a reflection of the above in the sense that practically all UMAs handle natural populations of some species under hunting schemes, while only one is dedicated to breeding and propagation with technology contributed by private parties. In a similar sense, the previous paragraph referred to the fact that sea cultivation technology, which tends to be more complex, requires the evaluation and participation of governmental and/or research and higher education institutions. The eventual confluence toward the UMA scheme implies a complex dynamic of groups, and should also consider the fact that people involved in the fishing sector, with a few rare exceptions, have shown themselves to be reluctant to try it. It is also important that we consider that one of the obstacles against the reinforcement of the conservation scheme represented by the Protected Natural Areas (PNA) is the lack of knowledge among the population of the true meaning of conservation. The general feeling in the communities within the PNAs is that conservation implies the closure of any kind of productive activity in the area, along with an unawareness as to whether these actions will benefit them or not. This problem is directly related to the lack of communication among the key participants as well as the way research institutions make the results of their studies known to the general public. Only two or three comments arising from community meetings and interviews with the common land owners refer to the presence of local institutions, of which only one (CIBNOR) has shown any kind of continuity. Human communities within the current natural protected areas are generally linked to the government sector (through personnel assigned to their handling, who depend on CONANP) and, to a lesser extent, to the environmental nonprofits, which are responsible for establishing the lines of communication between those involved. However, this reveals little propagation of the conservation programs due to the lack of adequate strategies for the socialization of science and the transfer of technology. A greater and more responsible participative effort by the higher education institutions involved would be extremely useful in this context. Obstacles and Problems Affecting Conservation in Different Regions Although the lack of financing for the tasks that allow the controlling of incompatible uses of landscapes with conservation and protection, and that favor the development of activities that are compatible with conservation, is a general problem, it is important that we specify the kinds of challenges to be faced in each part of the state. One of the matters that have concerned the population of La Paz in general, and the environmental sector in particular, is the sale of Mogote and the planned “Paraíso del Mar” tourist development there. The main problems implied by this project include the destruction of the mangrove swamps and a large part of the vegetative cover in the 40 kilometer stretch to be uncovered for the access road, as well as the high level of impact on water consumption in the city. The businesspersons involved assure that the project will only involve the destruction of 1% of the mangroves, and that the water used for the golf course will be desalted and treated with the latest technological systems. Nevertheless, there is a great deal of reticence among the population of La Paz regarding this mega project.22 22 Panorama Informativo newscast, Op. Cit, February 16, 2004. Another sensitive and local aspect of the problem is the threat to the Cabo Pulmo National Park (PNCP), which covers 7,111 hectares and includes the only solid reef in the Gulf of California, as well as being one of only three reef systems on the western coast of North America. Unfortunately, the reef is threatened by: the bleaching of the coral, the development of constructions on surrounding land, and the increase of sediments caused by said development, along with the lack of regulations for fishery and snorkeling activities. Ever since its beginnings, the Park has suffered a shortage of financing, an administration plan and personnel. The beaches of the PNCP are used for nesting purposes by five of the seven marine turtle species in danger of extinction, which are threatened by furtive hunting and unrestricted vehicle transit.23 The islands in the Gulf of California, despite being NPAs, have not managed to resolve the problem of the introduction of alien species. This is the case of the insular complex of Espíritu Santo, where domestic cats are one of the species that have been introduced. “There is very little information about them, and we can only suppose that as on other islands, these mammals capture wild species, in particular birds still in the nest and small native rodents, so limiting the natural populations and possibly endangering their permanence in the insular complex. Several groups agree that accelerating their extermination is necessary and urgent, as is the development of mechanisms for the control and prevention of new invasions.”24 The Sierra de la Laguna Biosphere Reserve has a series of problems identified in the Management Program elaborated in the year 2000. The first large problem mentioned refers to boundaries. “The boundaries in the Reserve are only defined in plans and 23 Noticias de Pro Península, Vol. 2, year 2003, p. 1. 24 CONANP, Espíritu Santo Insular Complex Management Program Mexico, SEMARNAT, Mexico City 2000, p. 54. documents, but there are no physical boundaries or signs to define the zones in the Reserve that indicate restrictions of activities that could cause damage.”25 The Reserve suffers serious deficiencies on a budget level, which generates deficiencies of equipment, infrastructure, signs and personnel, nor does it have PROFEPA inspectors, which means many misdemeanors are not penalized. This zone has always been exposed to the use of its natural resources, mainly due to livestock activity dating from two centuries ago in the region, and the extraction of forestry resources either legally or illegally. “Extensive livestock farming and clandestine forestry activities have caused a progressive deterioration of the vegetative cover, which in turn causes laminar and gully erosion, mainly in the northwestern (San Simón and San Pedro El Frijolar) and the northeast (San Antonio de la Sierra) regions.”26 The increase in caprine animals in the region, which is promoted by official programs, is threatening due to the way they are managed, as with bovines, in an extensive manner. Feral animals, consisting mainly of bovines and porcines, also cause serious damage to the renewal of the vegetation. At the moment there are no mineral extraction activities on the Reserve, although in the northwestern region this activity is presented as a threat to the biodiversity of the region.27 The communities within the Reserve are sources of labor for other areas due to the lack of employment opportunities within it. There is no productive diversification and the area depends almost exclusively on traditional animal farming, meaning labor forces (mostly young persons) are obliged to emigrate to seek better opportunities, with the main destinations being the cities of Los Cabos and La Paz, and the jobs available being mainly in the service sector. Emigration from the communities within the Reserve and the 25 CONANP, Sierra de Laguna Biosphere Reserve Management Program, Mexico 2000, p. 58. 26 Idem., p. 59. 27 Idem., p. 58. sale of their lands, which is caused by necessity, have repercussions in the conservation of natural resources as new inhabitants arrive who lack sufficient knowledge of the environment they are going to live in. The tourist activities developed in the Reserve are disorganized and have insufficient supervision. Young persons from the cities close to the area tend to camp in large numbers in the centre of the Biosphere Reserve during vacation periods, an activity that is uncontrolled and has very serious negative impacts on the area. Despite this fact, ecotourism and organized tourism are still considered sustainable productive alternatives for the region. In the area of the Bahía de Loreto National Park, natural resources are lost and deteriorated due to the application of incorrect use techniques caused by growing social needs and a lack of knowledge of natural processes. Added to the above is the presence of independent tourists and tourists accompanied by untrained guides, which generates a potential damage on the islands which is also worsened by the presence of “pirate” companies that carry out trips without the corresponding permits. An example of this is illicit recreational fishing activities, which are carried out on the islands visited by tourists and either organized by a tourist service company or carried out independently. The problem presented by recreational fishing activities is the lack of knowledge of the extractive capacity of the fleet and actual catching levels, which means it is impossible to establish regulatory measures of fishing practices. Another problem (noted by commercial fishermen) is that current legislation does not establish closed season periods for recreational fishing activities, which means species are caught during pregnancy. With regard to commercial fishing in Bahía de Loreto, according to the fishermen, the main resources with a high commercial value (red snapper, cabrilla, sea bass, clam and shark) have been over exploited and exhausted in the last twenty years, with the main causes being considered the use of nets called chinchorros (used for trawler and drift net fishing) with small spaces between the meshes that catch young fish; illegal fishing with harps and scuba diving equipment; the accidental catching of young fish of species of interest for riverside fishing (snapper, cabrilla, sea bass, sole, among others), and the arrival of fishermen from other states seeking to maximize earnings in as short a time as possible. It can be considered that another serious problem in the Park area is the impact of the introduction of exotic flora and fauna to the islands, which compete for space, food and nutrition with native species. The local species are not able to adapt to this kind of competition and become the prey of some of the newcomers (such as native mice that become the prey of newly arrived cats). On Carmen Island the species introduced are city rats (Rattus sp.), cats (Felis catus), dogs (Canis familiaris), rabbits (Silvilagus sp), Cimarron sheep (Ovis canadensis ); on Coronados Island the species have been cats (F. catus) and goats (Capra hircus), although it is considered that after eradication work has been carried out, there will be no exotic species left; on Danzante Island the fauna to be eradicated is the cat (F. catus), while on Santa Catalina and Montserrat islands the exotic species are the cat (F. catus) and the goat (C. hircus). The presence of some palm trees, brackish pine trees and undergrowth weeds are examples or vegetation introduced onto the islands and some small islands of the Park region.28 28 CONANP, Management Program, Bahía de Loreto National Park, Mexico, SEMARNAT, Mexico 2002, pp. 38-41 y 66. 3. Capacity of Attention to Environmental Problems 3.1 Government Response and Co-investment Francisco Flores González, legal representative of the National Forestry Commission (CONAFOR), who is responsible for forestry programs originally carried out by SEMARNAT, has established agreements with the Municipal Ecology Coordinator in Los Cabos to initiate a reforestation program in the San José marshlands after the damage caused by recent hurricanes in the area. Reforestation activities are supported by a group of young persons, and the plants will be provided by the municipal government (which produces them in plant nurseries).29 In order to resolve the problem of potable water in the Los Cabos municipality, five wells will be sunk in the short term (three in Cabo San Lucas and two in San José del Cabo), the distribution networks will be rehabilitated, and protection, automatization and coloration system work will be carried out on wells and aqueducts damaged by hurricane “Juliette”. The aim is that in the long term (the next fifteen years) a desalination plant will also be built with capacity for 200 lps in Cabo San Lucas. A complete diagnosis of the operating organism in charge of the potable water and drainage service will be elaborated with 75 per cent financing from BANOBRAS. The project for construction of a new aqueduct, treatment plant and water and drainage networks will be performed, as will construction of the infrastructure required for the distribution and storage of the potable water produced by the desalination plant in San Lucas.30 29 El Sudcaliforniano, state newspaper. April 2, 2004, p. 1F and 5F. 30 Los Cabos City Council. Municipal Development Plan, 2002-2005, pp. 61-62 and 128-129. The correspondent from the Panorama Informativo news program in Los Cabos, Leticia Hernández, has announced that treatment plants will be operational in La Ribera, the total cost of which will be eight million pesos.31 The municipality of Loreto is working on the promotion of activities in the fishery sector based on the principles of productivity and improvement of the productive processes to achieve community development. These activities are coordinated with academic and research centers in order to obtain the correct development of the sector through aquaculture projects and investment, so leading to a better use of the species. “Controls” will also be established to improve protection of the species concerned, while permits, authorizations or concessions will be obtained for fishermen who have been working in the area for a long period of time, and the feasibility of establishing a collection center for fishery products will be studied. A revolving fund will be created for this purpose to attend to the needs of the fishery population, and so equip the sector.32 The Mayor of the municipality of La Paz has reported that the state Tourism Coordination Office and environmental authorities meet constantly to avoid contamination of water in the Bay and promote its certification as a pollution-free area in order to promote tourism.33 In the case of the municipality of Mulegé, the state Governor has reported that eight desalination plants have been built in the Pacific North region.34 The elaboration of the Hydraulic Plan in the Municipality of Mulegé will also be discussed with the federal and state governments, and the Comprehensive Sustainable 31 Panorama Informativo newscast, Op. Cit., April 19, 2004. 32 Loreto City Council. Municipal Development Plan, 2002-2005, p. 34. 33 Panorama Informativo news program, Op. Cit., April 12, 2004. 34 Idem., February 24, 2004. Agriculture and Productive Re-conversion Plan in Areas of Recurring Drought will also continue in order to store water for animal use (construction of dykes, rubblework walls and water basins) and to recharge the aquifers. In accordance with the Water Law of the state of Baja California Sur, the Town Hall will propose that the Potable Water and Drainage System define more precise and strict rules regarding volumes of potable water for industrial use, including tourist service companies such as hotels, marinas, port services, etc.35 For the care and protection of peninsular pronghorn deer, one of the subspecies of Antilocapra americana peninsulares reproduced in the El Vizcaíno Biosphere Reserve region (in 1990 there were only 125 examples, the species was in danger of extinction, mainly due to modification of its habitat), the then Ministry of the Environment, Natural Resources and Fisheries, the El Vizcaíno Biosphere Reserve, the nonprofit Espacios Naturales, Desarrollo Sustentable A. C. and the Ford Motor Company launched the “Peninsular Pronghorn Deer Recovery Plan” by means of a campaign entitled “Save the Pronghorn”. The aim of this plan was reproduction in semi-captivity, elimination of furtive hunting, increase of knowledge of the behavior of the species and environmental education among local inhabitants.36 In order to carry out management of the Sierra La Laguna Biosphere Reserve, and in consideration of the fact that its main objective is sustainable use of the area, it was decided that the Management Program would involve the different sectors that interact in the region. Collaboration commitments were also established that, through joint work, would lead to compliance of the aforementioned goal. In order to assure that this 35 City Council of Mulegé. Municipal Development Plan, 2002-2005, p. 22. 36 TIPS magazine by Aeroméxico, Baja California Sur, Number 24, summer of 2002, p. 63-68. objective be met, as of August 31, 1999, the Assessment Board of the Reserve was set up, consisting of representatives of the different sectors having inherence in the area (state Governor, SEMARNAT Delegate, Director of the Reserve and representatives of the government, academic, social, civil and business sectors).37 In the case of the El Vizcaíno Biosphere Reserve, the principal objective of the Management Program is to plan and provide the elements required for its management, consisting of strategies and actions for conservation, the use of its natural resources and the organization of productive activities in the region. For operation of this Program, mechanisms have been established for the reconciliation and coordination of the different persons involved who participate in the area, whereby on May 14, 1997, the Reserve Technical Assessment Board was created, in which government representatives, academic institutions and research centers, social organizations, common land owners, communities, land owners and tenants, business organisms or members of the private sector and non-governmental organizations take part.38 In 1997, the Management Program of the Espíritu Santo Insular Complex started to elaborate and have as its main objective the definition of the management and planning strategy for conservation of the Complex. It features, among other components, the institutional organization and coordination of the different sectors involved with the use and conservation of the insular complex (government offices, private firms and the local population).39 37 CONANP, Sierra de La Laguna Management Program, SEMARNAT, Mexico 2003, p. 74. 38 CONANP. El Vizcaíno Biosphere Reserve Management Program, Mexico, SEMARNAP, Mexico City 2000, pp. 41 and 120-121. 39 CONANP. Espíritu Santo Insular Complex Management Program, Mexico, SEMARNAP, Mexico City 2000, pp. 20 and 88. At the moment, thanks to the initiative of the National Protected Natural Areas Commission (CONANP), the Sociedad de Historia Natural Niparajá, A. C. (Niparajá Natural History Society) has delivered a feasibility study to CONANP aimed at evaluating the possibility of enlarging the boundaries of the Protected Natural Area of the Espíritu Santo Insular Complex. By means of a participation process, Niparjá established proposed boundaries by coordinating the consultation process, facilitating dialogue between the different sectors and, as a final result, delivering to CONANP the justification study with the recommendations and opinions offered by the users involved. The Bahía de Loreto National Park Management Program has as its main objective the definition of management strategies for the preservation of the natural resources in the Park and the restoration of its environments by promoting the development of the communities within it. It currently consists of a Technical Assessment Board (established on September 17, 1999), which acts as consultation and social participation office and consists of representatives of the government sector (federal, state and municipal), centers of higher education and research, the productive sector and non governmental organizations.40 The Gulf of California Islands Flora and Fauna Protection Management Program was created in order to establish a conservation strategy to protect the insular ecosystems by promoting the sustainable use of the natural resources in the region. The Program also includes a Technical Assessment Board (created in November, 1998) in 40 CONANP. Bahía de Loreto National Park Management Program, Mexico, SEMARNAP, Mexico City 2002, pp. 20 and 88. which government offices, the private sector, social organizations, non governmental organizations and academic institutions take part.41 In the case of protection and management of the Cimarron sheep, in the year 2000 the then SEMARNAP elaborated the Project for the Conservation, Management and Sustainable Use of the Cimarron Sheep (Ovis canadensis) in Mexico, which is part of the recovery strategy framework for priority flora and fauna species (PREP) and that also allows an indirect protection of other species. The case of the Cimarron sheep (species included in Official Mexican Standard NOM 059) acquires particular relevance, given that it is of great cultural and economic tradition for the northern part of the country, and allows (thanks to its value to hunters) the generation of jobs and revenues that are compatible for the conservation of the species and its habitat. Its instruments include the incorporation of land where the species can still be found into the System of Wildlife Conservation Units (SUMA), which permits a planned, orderly management of the species and its habitat that is compatible with its social development. It should be mentioned that this conservation, management and sustainable use model already operates in Baja California Sur, although it does face a number of problems on a regular basis.42 As part of the ecological organization of the territory of Baja California Sur, the state and municipal governments have been participating in a number of different actions aimed at complying with the Ecological Ordinance for Urban and Tourist Development of the Bahía de La Paz Region and its Area of Influence, and the Northwestern Biological Research Center (CIBNOR) started to elaborate the state ecological ordinance project. 41 CONANP. Gulf of California Islands Flora and Fauna Protection Management Program, Mexico, SEMARNAP, Mexico City 2000, pp. 16 and 133. 42 SEMARNAP. National Institute of Ecology. Project for the Conservation, Management and Sustainable Use of the Cimarron Sheep (Ovis canadensis) in Mexico. Mexico City, 2000. pp. 5 and 11. Consultations on the Ecological Ordinance Administration of the Sea of Cortez were also held, the aim of which was to make known the mechanisms for the instrumentation of the Ecological Ordinance for the region. As part of the conservation and environmental education actions, the Aquarium of the Californias Museum project was launched as an important space for diffusion, education, preservation and research. The Autonomous University of Baja California Sur (UABCS) has exercised resources for the realization of the following projects: a) the study of the genetic origin of flora in the state; b) the determination of the current state of populations of large whales in the Gulf of California and a proposal for the management and protection for said cetaceans; c) a retrospective study (1973 to 2001) of the environmental impact and degradation of natural resources in the La Paz basin; and d) the elaboration of the Cabo Pulmo National Park Management Program. With regard to judgments passed on environmental matters, the Ministry of Urban, Infrastructure and Ecological Planning (SEPUIE) issued technical opinions on fishery, tourism and highway infrastructure projects. Regarding the control of environmental emissions, the Ministry issued functioning licenses and operating permits to the industrial sector, and also carried out a public consultation on the San José del Cabo Marshland Reserve Management Plan in order to provide orientation for recovery and conservation actions in this area. The SEPUIE also took part in the Ordinance of the Gulf of California Region. The state government signed the Agreement for the Prevention, Control and Combating of Contamination of the Marine Environment due to waste water and other discharges into the sea, in which four coastal states on the Gulf of California took part after an initiative from the Navy. As part of this agreement, inspection and surveillance actions will be promoted for the conservation of the Marine Environment. As a result of the Conservation Programs, agreements have also been signed with the UABCS, the CIBNOR and the Interdisciplinary Marine Science Center (CICIMAR) in order to serve the Sea Wolf and Sea Bird programs with the intention of uniting efforts for the attention and protection of species in this area. In 2003, the ceremony of rescue and conservation of Espíritu Santo Island took place organized by the Gulf of California Islands Flora and Fauna Protection Area, which announced conclusion of the expropriation of land located on the island. This complex process was carried out with the collaboration The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Conservation of the Mexican Insular Territory A. C. (ISLA), the National Foundation for Environmental Education (FUNDEA) and the National Commission of Protected Natural Areas (CONANP). In order to promote actions aimed at controlling the management of hazardous waste, the federal government channeled resources to the “Crusade for a Clean Mexico” and “National Crusade for Forests and Water” programs. As part of the “Crusade for a Clean Mexico” program, authorization was obtained for the installation of a collection center fir temporary storage of burnt oils in Guerrero Negro. With regard to environmental impact actions, the Scientific Consultation Board on Environmental Impact Matters of the state of Baja California Sur was established, which consists of the Rector of the UABCS, the Directors of CIBNOR, CICIMAR, the Center of Technological Sea Studies (CETMAR), the National Institute of Forestry, Bird and Livestock Research (INIFAP) and the La Paz Regional Fishery Research Center (CRIP – La Paz). With the participation of the Ministry of Social Development (SEDESOL), resources were invested in a program entitled “Design and Implementation of an Environmental Education Program to Improve the Quality of Life of the Inhabitants of Communities near San José Island” and for an environmental diagnosis to identify sustainable productive activities in two fishing communities in the area of influence of the Loreto Bay National Park.43 3.2 Response of nonprofit organizations Amigos para la Conservación de Cabo Pulmo (Friends for the Conservation of Cabo Pulmo, ACCP) was created by members of the local community who were concerned about promoting the conservation of the natural resources of the Cabo Pulmo Marine Park. Its programs include supervision of the sea turtle, in particular the following programs and projects. The grace and distinction of the sea turtle and the enthusiasm to bring it to the coastline to be marked means that members of the community have taken the decision to get involved in this process. The ACCP carries out monitoring on a monthly basis of the sea turtle and has participated in six workshops and national and international conferences on how to establish and manage Protected Maritime Areas. The federal decentralization of administration of the Protected Natural Areas and conservation of the sea turtle is another important point. The ACCP has also held meetings and workshops on the conservation of the sea turtle, has initiated creation of a local voluntary 43 Government of the state of Baja California Sur. 5th Government Address 2003-2004, Leonel Cota Montaño, pp. 130-134. surveillance committee with the help of the Federal Attorney’s Office for Protection of the Environment (PROFEPA), with which a formal cooperation agreement has been signed. A support network has been established with other nonprofits in Baja California and the United states, and the association also works with a number of academic institutions. One aim is to initiate a program of supervision and control of the coral reef with the development of an international team of scientists who work in the Sea of Cortéz and the UCLA Reef Control department.44 Centro de Estudios Costeros (Center for Coastal Studies) prepared the Second Conservation of the Turtle Festival. The efforts to conserve nests on mainland beaches, which began almost 30 years ago, have had little effect on recovering the population; the depredation of this species in Comondú is such that there are shell cemeteries on some beaches, a sign of the lack of surveillance by federal authorities.45 Sociedad de Historia Natural Niparajá, A. C. (Niparajá Natural History Society) is an organization that currently develops the Comprehensive Conservation Project in the San Cosme – Punta Mechudo Corridor (located between La Paz and Loreto, and covering part of the municipalities of La Paz, Comondú and Loreto), the components of which are the socio-environmental diagnosis of the San Cosme – Punta Mechudo Corridor, identification of sustainable productive alternatives, community social organization, market studies of fishery and agro-fishery products; aquiculture feasibility studies for fish and mollusks, and the diagnosis of the “El Bosque - La Soledad” micro-basin. The organization also develops the proposal of the territorial ecology ordinance program of the Loreto Coastal Plains; the proposal to enlarge the Bahía de Loreto National Park; the creation 44 Report by Pro Península, Vol. 2, year 2003, pp. 1-2. 45 El Sudcaliforniano newspaper Op. Cit., April 2, 2004, p. 1A and launching of operations of the Baja California Sur Fund for Protected Natural Areas (FOSANP or “Friends of Wild Baja”); the strengthening of the infrastructure and management of the Espíritu Santo Island insular complex; the organized expropriation of Espíritu Santo Island; the elaboration of the Support Guide for Environmental Education for elementary level teachers in Baja California Sur; the reactivation of civil organizations in Baja California Sur in favor of conservation and sustainable development; the reconstruction and maintenance of rural schools in the San Cosme – Punta Mechudo Corridor; support for families living in the Corridor through rural schools in order to develop elementary education levels and, with adults, through productive training programs, social organization and the seeking of sustainable production programs, community training, productive projects and support for elementary education. 250 people of all ages have been benefited in the Corridor thanks to these programs. Colectivo Sierra de La Laguna A. C. (Sierra de La Laguna Collective) carries out the identification of community needs in San Dionisio (Sierra de La Laguna) and workshops on environmental sanitation aimed at rural tourism in San Dionisio. The Collective has also held community workshops with the women of the area. One of its programs planned for the future is the promotion of alternative production projects through community participation that will allow sustainable development in mountain communities; the development of programs for alternative tourism (ecotourism, rural tourism and solidarity tourism); the strengthening of farm culture through the sale and valuation of typical products; the identification of priority areas for the conservation and development of pathways. Comunidad y Biodiversidad, A. C. (Community and Biodiversity, COBI) proposes the promotion of participative management of marine and coastal resources for community development and conservation of biodiversity through the strengthening of community participation aimed at conservation. The organizations focuses a large part of its efforts on defining, administering and promoting strategies and models aimed at sustaining river fish stocks. Other complementary strategies aimed at resolving the same problem include the promotion of environmental education and sustainable productive alternatives such as ecotourism. Through the community development program, COBI aims to promote new ways to involve local participants in fishery activities based on collaboration, strategic alliances and the creation of new sustainable riverside fishery models. Its most important achievements in Baja California Sur include two river locations as candidates for certification as sustainable fishing grounds, the design of a fund for the conservation of the Gulf of California, environmental education materials that have contributed to information on marine conservation for fishery producers and vendors, lobster fishery certification by the Marine Stewardship Council, and the monitoring of the Bahía de Loreto National Park in the long term. With regard to productive organizations in rural areas, we would like to mention the Federación Estatal de Propietarios Rurales, A. C., (state Federation of Rural Owners), which runs programs to attend to problems related to land ownership, rural development, federal government programs promoted by different offices of the state government. The Asociación Sudcaliforniana de Protección al Medio Ambiente y la Tortuga Marina de Los Cabos, A. C. (ASUPAMATOMA or Baja California Sur Association for Protection of the Environment and the Sea Turtle in Los Cabos) performs, among other actions, the coordination of two camps for the protection of the sea turtle in Cabo San Lucas and one in Todos Santos. It also executes a preventive environmental education program in schools in the municipality of Los Cabos and guided visits for families in the camps where they are invited to take part on weekends. With these actions the organization has been able to protect 20 kilometers of beach in Los Cabos and 36 kilometers of beach in Todos Santos. It has also freed over 60,000 baby sea turtles, and 8,000 children have taken part in its environmental education program. In the future it is considering establishing a sea turtle protection corridor on the Pacific coast from Cabo San Lucas to La Paz and obtaining a clinical analysis and study laboratory for the recovery of sea turtles in Cabo San Lucas. Defensores de la Bahía de Cabo San Lucas, A. C. (Defenders of Cabo San Lucas Bay) have, informally and prior to the creation of the group, held a series of workshops with the Directorate of Protected Natural Areas and other authorities in order to provide ordinance for the Protected Natural Area of Cabo San Lucas. The group aims to establish the Assessment Board of the Protected Natural Area of Cabo San Lucas Bay, along with its management plan, and seek financing sources for any studies that may be required. Dolphin Human Care Foundation, A. C. aims to promote a healthy, clean and safe environment for dolphins and other sea mammals and ensure the return of Aqua and Leonee, Salsita and Nachito to their future installations, which will be used for emergency attention for trained, rescued, domesticated and wild sea mammals for their recovery and rehabilitation of return to their natural habitat. The group will also set up a hospital and laboratory for sea mammals, offer assessment services for the rescue of sea mammals for government offices and other institutions, interactive therapeutic swimming with dolphins; curative services with trained and wild dolphins; elaborate interactive education programs, services and summer camps for children of all grades; create a sanctuary for retired dolphins; and hold educational ecological tours for observation of wildlife. Escualos de México, A. C. (Sharks of Mexico) publishes a weekly column on the marine environment in El Sudcaliforniano, a newspaper based in Baja California Sur. It has also established collaboration agreements with CICIMAR and UCDavis in two scientific research projects on whale and white sharks, and launched a proposal for a “Justification Study of a Prohibition Period on Shark Fishing in Mexico during the Reproductive Season” project. In the future it will continue with its environmental awareness and education program; will produce three short films (30 and 60 seconds) for television and cinema to make the Mexican audience more sensitive to the impacts our daily actions have on the marine environment, such as pollution, excess fishing and the excessive use of species in danger of extinction; produce a 30-minute educational video for junior and senior high school students on the species of shark, manta and ray of commercial and aesthetic value in Mexico, their habitat, ecology, reproductive biology, ecological importance, importance for the fishing industry, the state of fishing grounds and alternatives. In this phase the organization has a letter of support from the US National Science Foundation; will enlarge its workshops for children entitled “Children’s Encounters for the Conservation of the Gulf of California”, an initiative of the Aquarium of Mazatlán. The organization has established relations with the Aquarium in order to get children from camps in the Baja California peninsula and, at a later stage, from other parts of the country, involved in these workshops. It will establish a network called “Tiburoneros” and expand its “Red de Tortugueros” network initiated by Dr. Jay Nichols of ProPeninsula and Dr. Raquel Briseño of the National Autonomous University of Mexico – Mazatlán, with whom the group has established collaboration agreements. The aim of this program is to create awareness and provide orientation for persons working in artisan fishing activities in Baja California, Sonora and Sinaloa regarding the regulations established by the Official Mexican Norm NOM 029, and how to apply it for sustainable use of sharks and rays and the industry in general. Grupo Ecologista Antares, A. C. (GEA or Antares Ecological Group) runs a community information center for visitors (exhibition hall, library, audiovisual room and information service); protects reproduction sites of cabrilla, garropa and porgy fish; offers support to operation of the Bahía de Loreto National Marine Park with sea crafts, fuel, payment of security personnel and construction of huts; monitors and surveys sea turtles and will build a station for protection and study of the animal. It also operates a 300- hectare GEA nature ranch in Sierra de la Giganta where it will build a station for study and protection of threatened land species (Cimarron sheep, cacti and deer); promotes the updating of laws and regulations on conservation matters. The group also organizes two trips a week to ensure there are no more threats endangering the life of sea lions and to count the numbers of males and females in each of the main sea lion packs in Loreto: Punta Lobos on Coronado Island; Punta Lobos on Carmen Island; Caleras on Montserrat Island and Roca San Marcial, an islet located a little to the south of the Agua Verde fishing community.46 46 Idem., April 21, 2004, pp. 4 and 6. Grupo Tortuguero de Todos Santos, A. C. (Todos Santos Turtle Group) holds surveillance actions in nest areas; incubates turtle eggs; creates awareness and holds talks in educational institutions in the community; carries out preventive work (handing out of leaflets and pamphlets); and works with families through video conferences. It considers that the capturing of Chelonia turtles in the region has been reduced considerably thanks to its activities. It aims to organize a turtle nursery; build its own incubator for turtle eggs; elaborate a permanent information program in the community and increase the number of the species. Unión Protectora Ecoturística de la Biosfera del Vizcaíno A. C. (Ecotourism Protector Union of the El Vizcaíno Biosphere) holds surveillance actions on the behavior of lagoons to detect preventive irregularities. It organizes environmental education camps and supports municipal delegations regarding the correct use of waste products. It has proposed that municipal authorities and delegations implement the urban development plan and control the chaotic development of the population of the area. Museo Ballenero de Baja California Sur, A. C. (Baja California Sur Whale Museum) has established its purpose as keeping the local population informed of the conservation of cetaceous mammals. It continues with its actions aimed at rescuing the Museum, which has been closed, with serious damage being caused to its installations and property. In the future it aims to elaborate and launch a program entitled “Environmental Education through Art”, in order to inform children (from kindergarten age to teenagers) in the city of La Paz. Tierra, Mar y Desierto, A. C., (Land, Sea and Desert) aims to offer human quality to unprotected communities, mainly women and children, in order to better their quality of life and help their development. It has undertaken training actions with women receiving economic support from the state government, and has launched a project entitled “Entrepreneurial Women in Baja California Sur”, working with 400 women in the five municipalities of the state, mainly Comondú and Mulegé, which has allowed it to detect their enormous needs. It has elaborated participative community diagnoses for the identification of sustainable activities, and also aims to carry out a sustainable development diagnosis focused on gender in La Purísima, San Isidro and Ley Federal de Aguas 4 and 5 (common land communities). It will administer resources to finance the launching of productive projects for women in situations of violence and for the promotion of health awareness and inequality of gender and, finally, will work to establish links throughout the state for the detection of women’ needs. Sistemas Naturales y Desarrollo, A. C., (Natural Systems and Development) aims to improve the quality of life of the inhabitants of rural communities in the state through improvement of their capacities as a result of a participative environmental education process. It currently operates a program aimed at creating community environmental promoters in La Ventana, El Sargento, Palma Sola and San Evaristo, and promotes sustainable rural tourism in Palma Sola. This organization aims to launch a program with the community promoters in their communities and initiate an environmental sensitivity and solid waste management program in Pescadero. Los Ángeles del Estero, A. C. (The Angels of the Marshland) aims to protect threatened species and rescue, conserve and develop sustainable projects to save the marshlands of San José del Cabo by observing the management plan and developing sustainable projects. It currently channels reports of existing problems in said marshlands; carries out cleaning programs in the area; creates documentation with photographs of local flora and fauna; and keeps an updated list of bird species in the area. It has also launched the creation of a seed bank of native plants, and has adapted a report entitled “Moist Lands, a Place of Life”, produced by Pro-Esteros. In the future it aims to offer workshops on moist lands to students of all levels (preschool to high school); create a nursery of native plants; carry out progressive reforestation in the area upriver of the San José stream; elaborate a radio program offering environmental education; participate actively in protection programs for threatened species; and enter into agreements with public and private organizations. Ciudades Hermanas de Santa Rosalía, A. C. (Santa Rosalía Sister Cities) is a group that arose thanks to the promotion of the Mulegé Town Hall and the Club de Leones. It currently receives and allocates donations through municipal delegates and sub-delegates to identify the different problems existing in the region. It carries out cleanliness campaigns throughout the municipality of Mulegé; detects the needs for medical equipment and medicine in hospitals; visits families with ophthalmologists to perform consultations and provide glasses where required. In the future it aims to develop programs in the municipality on the environment, civil protection, support for people with special needs and elaborate investment projects. Mulegé Alerta, A. C. (Mulegré Alert) is an organization that operates in the “Sombrerito Beach Aquatic Park”. It currently has 50 per cent progress of a project aimed at providing all services required for national and foreign tourism, and published a magazine entitled “Mulegé Mágico”, which promotes the municipality of Mulegé as a tourism destination. It proposes to continue with the Sombrerito Beach project and the magazine and launch a project entitled Marshland Walks. 3.3 Response from other Sectors With regard to research in fishery activities, the Northwestern Biological Research Center (CIBNOR), the Interdisciplinary Marine Science Center (CICIMAR) and the Autonomous University of Baja California Sur (UABCS) have continued with their research and study activities in order to generate the scientific and technical elements required to provide orientation and ordinance for fishery activities, and make progress on the development of aquiculture.47 The Villa Constitución Livestock Association called a meeting of farmers from mountain communities, who welcomed the visit from institutional representatives and mentioned the need for productive options, as the corresponding authorities have restricted the felling of trees for carbon production, which is a source of employment in these areas. They requested support with the repopulation of their caprine and bovine flocks and genetic improvement with better breeds. The representative of organic products from Los Cabos, Manuel Rangel Vázquez, announced the program to take place in the communities concerned (Palo Bola, Tequesquite, San Luis Gonzaga, Tepentú and Batequitos).48 The San Carlos-based School for Field Studies reports that five of the seven species of sea turtle that exist in the world arrive to this coast for reproduction, but that the areas are not safe for protection of the process and preserve the species. SFS has 47 State Government, 5th Government Address, Op. Cit., p. 91 48 El Sudcaliforniano newspaper, Op. Cit., April 21, 2004, p. 1A. recruited young persons from the United States, bought some land for housing and installation of an educational institution, and requires the corresponding permits for these activities.49 In an interview, Oscar Reséndiz Pacheco of the UABCS; Dr. Víctor Gómez of CICIMAR and Dr. José Luis Fernández, external assessor of the UNAM Energy Institute, mentioned that the UABCS will offer assessment to public and private firms on energy saving, and that La Perla de la Paz, the Ministry of Education and the UABCS already have a pre-diagnosis that will enable them to take responsible measures to save electrical energy. CICIMAR carries out solar energy studies to evaluate the possibility of social housing and reduce the level of absorption of this kind of energy in consideration of the kind of building, roofs, etc. Houses are now completely dependent on traditional energy sources, but this situation could improve with the use of local materials, a possibility that would also be more economical. The UNAM considers that urban design in La Paz is not the ideal due to distances between residential areas and workplaces, which complicates the creation of services and results the generation of time loss and possible criminal activities.50 4. Needs In support of management programs in the Protected Natural Areas, it is necessary that financing activities with the Global Environment Fund (GEF) and other multilateral organizations and international nonprofits continue in order to support conservation and restoration projects, sustainable use and research, as well as community development. 49 Panorama Informativo newscast, Op. Cit. (April 02, 2004). 50 Idem., (February 17, 2004) These resources may be exercised by the National Commission of Protected Natural Areas (CONANP) or through third parties.51 Baja California Sur has distinctive characteristics and iconographies with regard to the biodiversity of species on land, marine and fresh water areas, such as alternatives that human developments should adopt in order to establish on and live alongside uncultivated landscapes, in many cases considered insular. In order to place the natural wealth of the state in its proper dimensions and appreciate its inherent fragility, we need to identify alternatives and choose strategies in a responsible and intelligent manner. This implies knowledge of the problems of the area and evaluation of the threats that, in the name of socioeconomic development, have been practiced by decision makers. In order to stop the plundering of the natural resources of the region, it is necessary that we study it in depth, evaluate the social and environmental cost of each project to be developed in the area. It is also necessary that productive alternatives be designed to enable sustainable use of the natural and human capital of the state. Independently of the evidence of environmental deterioration and the harmful effect this has on the quality of life in the area (both factors associated with incorrect management of the environment), the environmental problem is largely due to the lack of a government office responsible for administering the environmental wealth of the state in an honest and intelligent manner. It is necessary that the contents of the state Development Plan 1999 – 2005 be met, especially with regard to a state Ministry of the Environment, and also to the characteristics of the regional environment and economy, as in order to achieve promotion of sustainable development, is it desirable that the Ministry 51 National Commission of Protected Natural Areas (CONANP), Working Program 2001-2006, SEMARNAT-CONANP-PDN, ISBN 968-817-514-5, Mexico City, p. 50. of Economic Development and the aforementioned state Ministry work together as a single office. In addition, it is important that environmental education and community development efforts be reinforced along with alternative participative production strategies as a means to improve the level of life in rural and coastal areas of the state. In interviews held with common land authorities, the general need for sanitary landfills was stated, as in most cases waste products are deposited in open air pits, which provokes air pollution (and the generation of flies and terrible odors) and visual pollution. Few common land areas have sanitary landfills. In urban areas, in particular La Paz, Los Cabos, Loreto and Ciudad Constitución, it is necessary that the state of sanitary landfills be reviewed, as there is no proper handling of solid waste products or hazardous waste. It is also necessary that recycling projects be developed in which the population can participate, such as the establishment of paper and card, plastic and aluminum recycling plants. The resources obtained from these plants could be used to promote cleaning, environmental education and domestic recycling campaigns. In general, it is necessary that the use, consumption and distribution of potable water be reconsidered. Municipal potable water and drainage offices require aid to modernize and repair the system in order to avoid waste and leaks, which are a constant problem. It is also necessary that a culture of water care be implanted, as people waste the liquid considerably. Another consideration could be charging more for the service and making water consumption more efficient. For the conservation and sustainable growth of oases, it is proponed to promote the declaration of Baja California Sur’s oases as a World Heritage site.52 To investigate and study the potentialities of each of the oases to establish development programs that can generate employment and foreign currency, and for civil society and the three branches of government to raise awareness in the communities so that they realize the importance of oases and the benefits –community, economic and environmental – arising from their conservation and sustainable exploitation. Investigation needs to be promoted to increase knowledge of the oases, through support for obtaining financing, and in addition the creation of radio and television programs that promote the awareness-raising of the people of Baja California Sur so that they will be the principal agents in the conservation of oases. It is also necessary to devise production programs that allow the conservation and best use of the oases by generating income for their inhabitants. Another need is to promote activities that permit the importance of oases in regional history and culture. It is urgent to work closely with the communities that live on the oases for them to strengthen the knowledge and appreciation of their microregions. Once the management of the oases is established it will be possible to begin the process that will make it possible to promote the declaration of the oases of Baja California Sur as Natural-Cultural World Heritage sites..53 4.1 Needs of the Municipality of Los Cabos 52 Cariño, Micheline, Importancia de los..., Op. cit., p. 6. 53 CIBNOR, UABCS, SEMARNAT, Primera reunión sobre los oasis de Baja California Sur. Importancia y Conservación, Epílogo. Mecanograma. La Paz, B.C.S., 14 de noviembre de 2002 (original de la memoria en prensa), pp. 1-2. Community participation is necessary to help conserve potable water supplies, and an effort needs to be made regarding water saving education and culture, with the participation of organizations and clubs in community campaigns and with promotion in the media by using billboard advertisements.54 In accordance with meetings with nonprofit organizations, federal, state and municipal officers, as well as representatives of the academic and research sectors, it was determined that environmental problems in the municipality can be resumed as contamination, depredation and plundering of natural resources, lack of support for environmental problems and lack of environmental information and promotion programs. Contamination caused by garbage (solid waste) is mainly found in beach areas, streams, streets, freeways and dumps, while water pollution is considered a serious problem in the marine and land environment (such as the San José marshland area and Enlatadora beach in Cabo San Lucas). The depredation and plundering of resources is another serious problem, with the plundering of sand from river beds, illegal fishing and illegal tree felling being the main problems. The lack of resources and support for environmental programs means it is impossible to carry out environmental education programs, surveillance, monitoring, conservation, information campaigns, etc. In this sense, support for environmental education is an enormous need, and a number of problems need to be looked at in order to resolve this issue. Supporting environmental education programs and campaigns favors social participation, so contributing to attention being paid to the needs of the region by 54 Los Cabos City Council. Municipal Plan of Los Cabos, Op. Cit,, pp. 61-62 and 128-129. the community itself, without waiting for other persons or offices to do so. The need for training programs for authorities and nonprofits was also expressed. 4.2 Needs of the Municipality of La Paz With regard to protection of the environment, protection is an urgent priority that should be directed towards recovery and conservation (understood to be the satisfaction of basic human needs and collection of the waste products derived from said needs) based on a modern and efficient legal framework that makes development and the surroundings compatible. Environmental planning and ecological ordinance55, environmental education56, efficient administration57 and environmental conservation58 instruments, along with the control and prevention of contamination59, should be the basis used to maintain the quality of life of the inhabitants of the city and the municipality.60 The future growth and development of the municipality of La Paz should be carried out in line with sustainability and rationality criteria, and for this reason the government has proposed elaboration of the Ecological Ordinance Plan of the Municipality of La Paz Municipality (Plan de Ordenamiento Ecológico del Municipio de La Paz), which will be the normative legal framework used to instrument planning, urban regulation and cadastral actions and strategies. With the participation of architects and engineers, the Urban Development Master Plan of the City of La Paz and Tourist Areas of the Municipality (Plan 55 Conclude, approve and report on the case of Bahía de La Paz. 56 Through permanent programs with educational institutions, nonprofits and research centers. 57 With the decentralization of functions. 58 Compliance of environmental impact studies required by law in constructions involving flora, fauna, urban image and cultural heritage. 59 Disposal, correct management, processing and final use of hazardous waste; revision of contaminant emissions from motor vehicles; disposal of waste water from rivers and bodies of water in urban areas; report and correct compliance of sanctions applicable to persons carrying out contaminating works, activities and practices. 60 XI La Paz City Council. Municipal Development Plan, 2002-2005, pp. 24 and 27. Maestro de Desarrollo Urbano de la Ciudad de La Paz ) (Los Barriles, Todos Santos, El Pescadero and La Ventana) will be established with a long term vision (25 years). The downtown area of the city will be improved with the gradual creation of public parking lots; the next step will be the remodeling of the Bahía de La Paz boardwalk and rehabilitation of the city’s waste water plant; Advisory Board will also be created for the planning of the urban development of the municipality.61 In order to comply with the potential and rational use of water, it is necessary that the administrative and operating processes be modernized, which implies construction and enlargement of priority drainage and potable water works in the city. Forty per cent of water in La Paz is wasted due to poor conditions of the distribution network and incorrect handling by the general public, which means there is an urgent need to rehabilitate some commonly-owned wells in the community of El Centenario to provide water for the city.62 According to information provided by nonprofit organizations, federal, state and municipal officers and representatives of the academic and research sectors during the community meetings, the problems identified on a recurring basis were the lack of environmental education and a general lack of knowledge on environmental matters. There are no communication campaigns on this matter, and surveillance strategies are insufficient, while environmental deterioration leads to deterioration of the landscape, which in turn affects tourist activities. It was said that many of the motor vehicles are very old models and do not have proper maintenance, which means they pollute more than is necessary. There is no ordinance of activities and uses that could be given to the 61 Idem., pp. 19-20. 62 Panorama Informativo newscast, Op. Cit. February 19, 2004. area, and there seems to be no planning focused on achieving sustainable development. There is a deficit of human resources with sufficient preparation for protection of the environment; no government support for protection and conservation of the environment; solid waste management campaigns are insufficient and have very little impact; there is no strict application of the law, which is also inefficient; and traditional producers have no profitable possible alternatives available to them. In light of the above, it is proposed that: community surveillance committees be trained by SEMARNAT and PROFEPA; the general public receive training in community self-management; alternative productive activities be found and support provided for existing proposals in this sense. It was also proposed that the natural resources of Baja California Sur be promoted in the media, along with their importance, and that volunteer activities and conservation of the environment be promoted as priorities, as well as the creation of credit and financial facilities for alternative productive projects. Finally, it was highlighted that there is a need to create a state development plan in conjunction with the civil society and organizations that represent it. For this purpose the following aspects are required: closer links with institutions and experts; improved legislation; the establishment of organization, tourism training, social participation, solid waste management, environmental education and strategic planning programs and that possible financing sources be investigated, that people work as volunteers in the Protected Natural Areas and that ecological ordinance and social participation programs be organized. A state Network of nonprofits needs to be created and hold informative and coordination meetings on a regular basis, report on the facilitation of financial support sources for organizations and for the creation of programs. It is also necessary that the establishment of new areas under conservation or protection schemes be promoted. There is a real sense among a number of persons in the environmental field in Baja California Sur that the creation of a government office in charge of legislating, planning, regulating and providing follow-up for environmental problems is needed. It is considered necessary that the environmental problems that have been detected are closely related to the productive aspects, in particular the lack of productive alternatives. 4.3 Needs of the Municipality of Mulegé As a result of the meetings held with nonprofit organizations, federal, state and municipal government officers and representatives of the academic and research sectors, it was concluded that the main environmental problem in the municipality basically consists of sea pollution caused by an excess of artisanal fishing and contamination caused by solid waste and other waste products emptied into the coastal area during the squid fishing season. There is a lack of attention in the El Vizcaíno Biosphere Reserve Protected Natural Area and there is no knowledge of how many animals are included in special protection schemes, and the problem is worsened with the immoderate exploitation of the fauna in the area. There is also a lack of proper sanitary fills or drainage in many communities in the area, nor is there a garbage management program (added to the fact that the local population has a lack of education in this matter), management of waste water does not guarantee sanitation in the area and potable water supplies, of which there is little, are badly used. A great problem is the little or no surveillance carried out by environmental authorities. Another series of problems are due to old land and water vehicles, often with badly kept engines, that generate a great deal of pollution, while in the short term the age of these vehicles provokes the increase of junk yard sites around the cities, as there are no spaces specifically destined for this. One alternative that has been proposed to resolve these problems is an increase in surveillance and strict regulations to avoid depredation and contamination. It was suggested that environmental education programs be reorganized to promote water care, the care of animals in danger of extinction, education on garbage disposal and care (valuation) of resources and for persons working in fishing activities. Another proposal was the creation of a program with children responsible for surveillance activities, a collection center and the establishment of signs and advertisements to promote care of the environment. The need to channel economic resources was also recommended, as was the need for an environmental education program and latrines in communities and/or a drainage and water treatment system in some areas. Another point made was trust in the citizen committees that exist as part of the El Vizcaíno Biosphere Reserve scheme, and the affirmation that said committees have identified the needs of the communities and the region, as well as agreements, and that all that is required is funds in order to launch the programs. Another point of agreement was the request for a sculpture of a grey whale to be the symbol of the town, represent the biological importance of the area and reinforce the commitment of the local people regarding the natural resources offered by the region. It was also mentioned that the donation of more trucks will help resolve the problem of solid waste. In light of the main problems identified above, the need for an urban ordinance program was established, as was the creation of compost using waste products generated by the processing of different marine products and the need for alternatives to obtain benefits from the entire product, in particular with regard to the shells. A space or project needs to be created to deal with the problem of used tires. Alternative tourism needs to be promoted and a stamp of quality implemented for products from Guerrero Negro. The aquifer should be studied to find out its actual conditions; a general program of instruction, professionalization and education from an environmental perspective should be established for all sectors of the population; an improvement program of existing infrastructure for solid waste management is required and studies need to be carried out to offer productive alternatives to the communities. The common land communities of Gral. Emiliano Zapata 2 and Gral. Emiliano Zapata 3 expressed that one of their needs is the creation of a Wildlife Conservation Unit (UMA) for deer management, as already exists in the Benito Juárez community. Another community, Díaz Ordaz, is currently requesting a UMA for management of pronghorn deer. It was also mentioned that there is a lack of environmental education, mainly in the case of children, and that financing is required to establish a serpentarium and for whale watching activities. The common land community of San Ignacio requires training in the handling of used car oil. 4.4 Needs of the Municipality of Loreto Most current ecotourism activities on the islands do not create direct benefits for their conservation. This situation is repeated in the case of the use of the area by private boats and yachts, and it is necessary that a project be designed to enable these profits to be invested in conservation of the Park. In order to obtain proper management of the natural resources of the Bahía de Loreto National Park, it is necessary that a culture of conservation of its natural riches be promoted. It is therefore very important that environmental education actions be developed and that information on the activities carried out by the Park be made known in order to achieve collaboration among the different social sectors and participation of volunteers. With regard to the need for coordination and agreements, the local communities and users in general need to be made part of the planning and management processes, while the participation of academic institutions, non governmental organization and regional, national and international institutions interested in conservation of the Park’s natural resources needs to be promoted. It is also very important that concrete actions be promoted among the different municipal, state and federal governments involved in their respective competencies in this area in order to obtain congruence among their programs and the planning process.63 In order to create ordinance of the urban growth of the city of Loreto, three strategies were established: enforcement of the ecological ordinance plan; definition of the Urban Development Normative Plan, which will have normative permanence with a 30- year vision; and promotion of the creation of territorial reserves. The lines of action are 63 CONANP, Management Program, Op. Cit., pp. 39, 71 and 73. to provide orientation for the urban growth of the city of Loreto towards the north and west; apply the urban regulation for Loreto and San Javier; and promote the creation of a municipal sanitary landfill.64 For proper management of waste products, it is necessary that the collection service be provided to the whole population in a timely fashion; the collection, removal and disposal of solid waste should be efficient; the technical capacities of the personnel working in this field should be improved, as should the equipment used to provide the service. It is therefore necessary that the service be systemized in order to have control over the personnel and equipment; the destination of solid waste should be created and controlled, as should its classification and use and continuous training provided to public service personnel. The lines of action include the elaboration of a sectorization program in the city to achieve full coverage of this service; application of an awareness program for classification of solid waste; promotion of the installation of a collection center with companies involved in the recycling of paper, card and plastic, and the creation of a sanitary landfill.65 In the fishery sector, the objectives of the municipal administration are the promotion of activities in the sector with principles of productivity and improvement of the productive processes in order to develop the communities involved in coordination with the academic and research sectors for proper development of the sector through aquaculture and sustainable fishery projects to ensure optimum use of the species. Controls are also required to improve protection of the species, and permits, authorizations or concessions should be granted to persons who have been working in 64 IV Loreto City Council Municipal Plan , Op. Cit., p. 29. 65 IV Loreto City Council. Municipal Plan of … , Op. Cit., p. 29. the fishing industry in the area for long periods of time. A feasibility project is required to establish a collection center for fishery products. A revolving fund should be created for this purpose to meet the needs of the population involved in fishery activities and so achieve growth of the sector.66 The recurring problems mentioned during the meeting held by the communities with different sectors were as follows: pollution caused by garbage; the over exploitation of natural resources; the lack of environmental culture and education; and the lack of information programs on environmental matters. These problems could be resolved by programs and campaigns with communication, education and information on environmental matters, and this was considered to be the most relevant need. This need implies financial resources channeled towards organizations working in this sense. 4.5 Needs of the Municipality of Comondú The lack of employment in mountain areas has resulted in excessive felling of trees and other plant species, which has a serious effect on the ecological equilibrium of the area. Silent activity has taken place for decades in the case of non-wood forest products, while a large number of trees are also felled for the production of carbon. The problem of indiscriminate felling of forestry resources could be reduced if it were compensated with alternative productive programs involving the community. The common land community of Ley Federal de Aguas No. 3 mentioned the need for increased surveillance to avoid the illegal extraction of desert ironwood trees, and greater organization regarding the Wildlife Conservation Unit (UMA) applicable to 66 Idem., p.34 Cimarron sheep in the community. Another community, Tepentú, considers it is necessary that different productive activities other than the elaboration of carbon need to be carried out, and that management of the UMA for Cimarron sheep needs to be modified, as it is currently rented from a private party, and it would be preferable if it were handled directly by the community. 5. Opportunities for Donations 5.1 Donations Region Kind of Beneficiaries NGO Needs to Be Resolved and Place Donation Conservation of the natural Conservation of capital of the state through natural areas in the programs such as: state, benefiting - Comprehensive entire population conservation project of the Over 250 persons in San Cosme - Punta communities located Mechudo corridor (includes in the San Cosme - municipalities of La Paz, Punta Mechudo Financial support Loreto and Comondú). corridor with basic for strengthening - Elaboration of education, of equipment and environmental education environmental Sociedad de infrastructure to support guide for education, and Historia Natural improve impact elementary teachers in all sustainable Niparajá A. C. state (vehicles, field the state productive projects (Niparajá Natural equipment, - Reconstruction and Initiatives of History Society) furnishings and maintenance of rural territorial ordinance office equipment); schools in San Cosme - and enlargement of increase in human Punta Mechudo corridor protected areas to resource base for - Training for adults in benefit the present projects productive programs, social and future of the organization and search for people of Baja sustainable productive California Sur projects - Ecological ordinance proposals in coastal plains of Loreto and enlargement of National Park - Creation and launching of operations by the Baja California Sur Fund for Protected Natural Areas Carrying out of sustainable Rural communities Resources to development diagnoses in the state, in launch actions for focused on gender particular women women in rural Operation of productive Tierra, Mar y areas (attention to projects for women Desierto, A.C. state violence, women’s Creation of center of (Land, Sea and rights, sustainable attention for women Desert) development and Creation of links productive throughout the state to projects) detect women’s needs Financing for The population in elaboration of general and children support material in particular, by for environmental promoting Promotion of education and environmental environmental education awareness culture through annual workshops projects, Helping avoid the for children (July each year) consisting of the extinction of sea entitled “Children’s production of species such as the Encounters with three short films shark Conservation in the Gulf of aimed at Escualos de California” increasing México A.C. Helping conservation of state sensitivity (Sharks of marine species and regarding the Mexico) ecosystems, in particular, impact of excess sharks and similar species, fishing and through promotion of contamination of protected marine areas the environment and an educational video (for junior and senior high school students) on species of shark, manta and ray in Mexico Financial support Promotion of Population of the Comunidad y for long-term environmental education state, in particular Biodiversidad A. state programs and Promotion of sustainable by promoting C. (Community hiring of trained productive alternatives such environmental and Biodiversity) human resources as ecotourism culture and Helping achieve sustainable sustainability of river fish productive projects stocks through the design, administration and promotion of a strategy model Promotion of projects to Financing to allow sustainable create networks development in mountain Colectivo Sierra that will enable communities, such as the de la Laguna A. the group to work carried out in San Inhabitants of Municipality C. (Sierra de la continue Dionisio (Sierra de La mountain of La Paz Laguna elaborating Laguna) in environmental communities Collective) sustainable sanitation and rural tourism productive projects projects Identification of priority areas for conservation Helping resolve the problem of the production of orchards (due to lack of Economic support water) through the for the “Sombrerito Beach Aquatic continuation of Park” project as a different the “Sombrerito tourist alternative (50 per Mulegé Alerta A. Municipality Beach Aquatic cent progress made, will Inhabitants of the C. (Mulegé Alert) of Mulegé Park” project and have all services to meet municipality maintenance and the needs of national and revision of the foreign tourists) promotion of Help with creation of jobs tourist activities by attracting tourism to the region through distribution of its “Mulegé Mágico” magazine Ciudades Elaboration of programs on Hermanas de the environment, civil Financing for The population of Santa Rosalía, Municipality protection, help for operation and the municipality of A.C. (Santa of Mulegé persons with special needs organization Mulegé Rosalía Sister and the elaboration of Cities) investment projects Donation of Information on portable environmental education Communities of La electronic through program to create Municipality Ventana, El SINADES, A. C. equipment, GPS, environmental promoters of La Paz Sargento, Palma Sola walkie talkie in La Ventana, El Sargento, and San Evaristo radios, satellite Palma Sola and San Evaristo telephone comunities equipment and Promotion of sustainable financing to rural tourism in Palma Sola continue with community environmental education program Financing for conservation of Rescue and conservation of Museo Ballenero museum building, Whale Museum and design de Baja California Municipality construction of of “Environmental General population Sur, A.C. (Baja of La Paz another two Education through Art” of the state California Sur buildings and program to serve the Whale Museum) equipping of the population of the area museum Working with the Directorate of Protected Natural Areas in the ordinance of the Cabo San Lucas area by organizing Defensores de la Financing to hire workshops to help organize Bahía de Cabo personnel to serve Cabo San boat activity in scuba diving Community of Cabo San Lucas, A. C. and coordinate Lucas areas near the Arco de San Lucas (Defenders of activities of the Cabo San Lucas San Lucas Bay) organization Demonstrating irregularities occurring in the Bay, such as contamination due to deficiencies in drainage Financing for Environmental education infrastructure, campaigns equipment and Protection of threatened Ángeles del operating species (sterna antillarum) Estero San José del expenses; Rescue, conservation and Community of San A. C. (Angels of Cabo economic support development of sustainable José del Cabo the Marshland) for development projects to save San José of sustainable del Cabo marshlands projects in San José del Cabo Surveillance in areas of Financing to nesting and incubation of Grupo continue turtle eggs Tortuguero de Todos conservation and Creation of awareness and Community of Todos Santos A. Santos surveillance talks in educational Todos Santos C. (Todos Santos project in turtle institutions in the Turtle Group) nesting beaches community Preventive work: handing our of leaflets and pamphlets Working with families by showing video conferences Promotion of environmental culture Economic through information center resources to with exhibition hall, library, Grupo Ecologista strengthen audiovisual room and Antares program orientation service Municipality Community of A. C. (Antares promoting culture Protection of sites where of Loreto Loreto Ecological of the cabrilla, garropa and porgy Group) environment and fish conservation of Surveillance and monitoring natural resources of operations in Bahía de Loreto National Marine Park and of sea turtles The inhabitants of Financing for Environmental education Guerrero Negro, in education and campaigns for young particular conservation persons, children, producers, by Unión Protectora campaigns aimed producers and general providing them with Ecoturística de la at sustainable public information and Reserva del productive Balanced management of training in Vizcaíno A. C. Guerrero projects and for whale watching activities in environmental (Ecotourism Negro construction of Ojo de Liebre lagoon matters Protector Union small jetty to Monitoring and prevention Municipal of the El Vizcaíno improve services of environmental authorities by Reserve) and offer tourists contingencies throughout providing a better image the year professional assessment in the correct handling of waste products Asociación Sudcaliforniana de Protección al Medio Ambiente y la Tortuga Economic Contribution to the Marina de Los resources for creation of environmental Community of Los Cabos, A. C. Los Cabos program of culture in new generations Cabos. (Baja California courses and Protection of sea turtle Sur Association workshops species nesting in the area for Protection of the Environment and the Sea Turtle of Los Cabos) Creation of dolphin aquarium with sufficient infrastructure to ensure a healthy, clean and safe If this project takes Dolphin Human Financing for environment for dolphins place, it will benefit Care Foundation Los Cabos construction of and other sea mammals the people with A. C. dolphin aquarium and offer therapeutic special needs in Los interaction of animals and Cabos humans, mainly focused on the rehabilitation of persons with special needs 5.2 Volunteer Work Kind of Region and NGO Volunteer Needs to Be Resolved Beneficiaries Place Work Professionals Inhabitants of the Colectivo Offer rural communities and university community of San Sierra de la different labor options by students willing Dionisio Laguna A. C. Municipality creating sustainable to take part in (Sierra de la of La Paz productive projects workshops and Laguna designing Collective) projects People willing to SINADES, A. Municipality work in training Help enlarge the radius of Community of La Paz C. of Paz and promotion action of the NGO of rural tourism Asociación Sudcaliforniana de Protección al Medio Ambiente y la Volunteers Tortuga willing to Marina de Los Municipality monitor turtle Help conservation of the Community of Los Cabos A. C. of Los Cabos species in turtle Cabos- (Baja nesting season California Sur (June to March) Association for Protection of the Environment and the Sea Turtle of Los Cabos) People concerned about Defensores de conservation of la Bahía de the bay and Help conservation of the Cabo San willing to Cabo San Cabos San Lucas bay Inhabitants of Cabos Lucas, A. C. collaborate in Lucas San Lucas (Defenders of inspection of the Cabo San area and the Lucas Bay) realization of different activities related to conservation Grupo Volunteers Tortuguero de willing to Todos Santos Todos monitor the Community of Todos Conservation of the species A C. (Todos Santos nesting of the Santos. Santos Turtle Laud turtle in Group) the region 5.3 International and Bi-national Cooperation At present, some local organizations work with international and national-level organizations to support their conservation programs: The Natural Conservancy (TNC) on specific conservation projects Conservación Internacional (CI) IMAC Mexico Global Greengrants Fund Monterey Bay Aquarium (California, USA) on scientific research projects, Blue Planet Institute Wild Aid American Elasmobranch Society Seawatch World Wildlife Fund works in the state in the establishment of marine reserves in the Gulf of California.
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