News for the Period January 2004 to December 2004
Regional Ministerial Meeting for Cooperation on Coastal and Marine Resource Management
The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Systems Project (MBRS) reached a milestone in the pursuit of its
policy objectives by successfully convening the "1st Ministerial Meeting for Cooperation in the Gulf of Honduras" from the 6th to the
8th of December, 2004, in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize. At this groundbreaking event, the Governments
of Belize, Guatemala and Honduras established ten common agreements in areas of mutual interest for
mainly focused on the sustainable use of fisheries, tourism and transboundary protected areas in the Gulf of Honduras geographic area.
The MBRS Project began the process of regional policy harmonization among Belize, Honduras, and Guatemala with the consolidation of the Southern Transboundary Commission in
2002. Subsequently, it has convened four meetings to identify regional issues and translate them into regional regulations. Their
efforts resulted in the establishment, in the year 2003, of a Policy Working Group (PWG) comprising the Legal Advisers of the Ministries
of Natural Resources and the Environment, Tourism Institutes and Fisheries Departments from Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.
This group, under the coordination of the Environmental Law Program of the IUCN-World Conservation Union(UICN-ORMA), took on the task of
turning the recommendations of the Southern Transboundary Parks Commission into policies that were in agreement with national and international legislation.
In July 2003, the Council of Ministers of the Central American Commission on Environment and Development (CCAD) adopted the policy
outlined in the document entitled "Sustainable Development of Fisheries, Tourism and Transboundary Marine Protected Areas in the MBRS".
That document was the basis for the development of standards and regulations to strengthen and implement these policies which were
endorsed by the CCAD Council of Ministers.
One of the most important agreements of the "1st Ministerial Meeting for Cooperation in the Gulf of Honduras" held in December 2004
aims to guarantee long term economic prosperity for future generations of fishermen, through the establishment of harmonized closed
seasons for lobster, queen conch and sea turtles. Also addressed in these agreements are the physical planning, conservation and development of heavily
used tourist areas in the MBRS region. This includes the promotion of Marine Protected Areas that contribute to the stabilization and
protection of the coastal landscapes and maintain the marine coastal water quality. The harmonization of policies related to the use and dimensions of gillnets, the use of mooring buoys, dive equipment, carrying capacity,
anchoring and legal aspects for service providers was also achieved by the ministers. Another important step agreed upon was the establishment of a 90-day deadline for the introduction of the above mentioned provisions
in the respective national legislations through the normal legal processes.
In order to achieve an official endorsement of these regulations, the Ministries of Natural Resources and the Environment, Agriculture
and Fisheries were invited to this "1st Ministerial Meeting for Cooperation in the Gulf of Honduras". Other noteworthy participants were
Ambassadors of the United States of America, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico in Belize, the Directors and Legal Advisers
of the Ministries of Natural Resources and the Environment, Tourism Institutes and the Fisheries Administrations were also present.
Local authorities, such as Governors, Mayors and representatives of naval bases were present. View the
Agreements on Common Enforcements in the MBRS Geographical Area (8 p. 749KB) in pdf.
First Mesoamerican Fishermen's Congress
In a landmark event, more than 120 fishermen, governmental representatives
and fisheries researchers from Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico
will convene for the First Mesoamerican Fishermen Congress. This event
will be held in Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico, from the 23rd to 26th
This unprecedented Congress will provide a much needed forum for discussions
on topics such as:
1. Cooperatives and organization.
2. Alternative economic activities for fishers.
3. Conservation and management of fisheries especially lobster, snapper
4. Regulation, Fisheries and the Environment.
The discussion of these topics will result in agreements concerning
appropriate practices to be used in the region for the capture and commercialization
of species such as lobster, snapper, conch and other species. In short,
the foundation needed for the development of fisheries in the MBRS region
for the coming years will be discussed and established.
A very important feature of this Congress will be the establishment
of capacity-building mechanisms to improve the management of the participating
organizations and their ability to implement fisheries policies in the
face of the challenges which exist.
One of these challenges is to agree on the harmonization of regional
regulations for the use of coastal resources. In the near future,
the MBRS countries will be adopting some of these regulations as well as
other international conventions to which they are already signatories
and which directly impact fishers.
This first opportunity for dialogue amongst fishers, authorities and
researchers, which will establish strategic directions for fisheries
development in the MBRS region, is being promoted and sponsored by the
Project for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of the Mesoamerican
Barrier Reef Systems (MBRS), The Mesoamerican Reef Alliance (ICRAN-MAR)
and the Comisión de Áreas Protegidas de Yucatán (CONANP).
MBRS Strengthens Relations between the Media and the Environmental Sector
The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Systems Project (MBRS) aims to promote the exchange of information among
environmental medias, the journalism networks and the Ministries of Environment within the Mesoamerican
region. To this end, the MBRS Project is continuously supports the workshops for environmental
journalists from Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico, whose focus is on the sustainability of
coastal and marine resources.
Following an analysis of the role of environmental medias during the regional workshop held in Honduras
in August 2002, the MBRS Project seeks to establish a forum for governmental and non-governmental media
agencies, to work on the relation between the population and the coastal and marine environment.
For this reason, workshops are designed with the objective of establishing dynamic communication
channels among the MBRS Project, the Ministries of environment and the journalists. This relationship
should guarantee the media’s access to credible, useful, and pertinent information on coastal and
marine issues. The final objective is to improve the understanding and increase the impact of
sustainable development activities.
One of the first national workshops was carried out from the 24th to 26th of September 2004 in Cayos
Cochinos, Honduras where 30 environmental journalists were trained. It is important to say that some
journalists from the region, formerly trained in last year’s regional workshop, are already producing
press releases with a regional or transboundary focus.
The regional and national workshops for journalists have been a breeding ground where many journalists
have acquired new tools and information. The journalists believe that being part of a network provides
them with support and enables them to participate in cutting-edge initiatives in the region, such as
the MBRS Project, which is gradually changing the outlook on news relating to coastal and marine issues.
The MBRS Project Trains
Biologists in the Use of a Regional Database
in the countries of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras are receiving
training in the use of a regional database starting in May of this year.
This database, the Regional Environmental Information System (REIS),
was developed to manage information related to the health of the Mesoamerican
Barrier Reef System (MBRS).
The first training courses were held in Belize City from May 11th to
14th, and on May 21st, at WorldCom Technologies. The first courses in
Guatemala and Honduras were held from May 24th to May 28th. Training
in Guatemala continued from July 18th to 23rd. Most recently, the first training
courses were held in Mexico at the Universidad de Quintana Roo, from September 6th to September 8th, 2004.
The participants selected are those who are carrying out the data collection
under the regional environmental monitoring program, which was launched
last year by the Project and its partners from the participating countries
of the MBRS region. Upon completion of this training, the participants
are able to manage their data using the REIS. Courses were held from October 21 to 23 in Chetumal Mexico.
Additional courses will be held in January in Honduras.
The REIS is being implemented by the MBRS Project and its partners in
Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico. The successful implementation
of this monitoring program and database is an achievement of the MBRS
regional strategy to unite the efforts of key players from these countries
in improving the management of these share marine resources.
The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Systems Project is a collaborative initiative
being executed by the governments of these four countries for the conservation
and sustainable use of the Mesoamerican reef resources. The Project
has as one of its key objectives to provide decision makers and resources
users with the information they require to better manage the reef ecosystems
and the implementation of this regional database is a major step towards
achieving that objective.
Training in Monitoring Fish Aggregations
From August 30th to September 3rd of 2004, 16 participants from Honduras and Belize received training on the Monitoring of
Reef Fish Aggregation Sites, at the Marine Research Station on Glover's Reef Marine Reserve in Belize. Officers from the
Fisheries Department of Belize, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve and The Nature Conservancy taught the course, which focused
primarily on practical application.
This training will strengthen the team of professionals in Honduras to enable them to initiate monitoring activities at their
aggregation sites. In the case of Belize, where monitoring is already taking place, it will strengthen the experience of younger
professionals in the monitoring team.
Through these activities, it is intended that the MBRS countries would
promote the conservation of aggregation sites and establish region-wide
regulations in those sites identified as priority areas, since it has
been scientifically demonstrated that the majority of these fish species
migrate between the countries which comprise the MBRS.
3rd Meeting of the MBRS Southern Transboundary Park
On July 13, 14, and 15 of July, 2004, the 3rd Meeting of the MBRS Southern
Transboundary Commission and the Ordinary Assembly of the Tri-National
Alliance of the Gulf of Honduras was held in Guatemala City. The meeting
was attended by members of the Po.licy Working Group which is comprised
of the Legal Advisors of the Ministries of the Environment and Natural
Resources of Guatemala, Belize and Honduras. Also present were Legal
Advisors of the fisheries and tourism sectors of these three countries,
representatives of the TRIGOH member organizations, the mayors of Omoa
and Puerto Cortez, representatives of the municipalities of Livingston
and Puerto Barrios, and the MBRS National Coordinators.
The objective of this meeting was to identify mechanisms for the implementation of transboundary policies in the areas of
tourism, fisheries and marine protected areas, which have been endorsed by the CCAD Council of Ministers. During the
meeting, working groups were formed which prioritized those policies which can most feasibly be implemented in the short term,
producing, at the end of their discussions, a proposed Implementation Plan.
The next steps will focus on the drafting of standards and regulations that implement the policies, so that the respective
governments can make them official through decrees, standards, resolutions and other legal instruments. This will enable the
establishment of regionally harmonized regulations in those sectors which require multilateral and regional cooperation to
achieve sustainable management of the shared resources.
Training in sampling methods for the monitoring of marine pollution
As part of the Synoptic Monitoring Program (SMP) of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Systems (MBRS) Project, training
courses were held in the sampling methods for monitoring of marine pollution in the MBRS region. These courses were
carried out, in May of 2004, in the MBRS member countries, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras.
The MBRS Project is an initiative of the member countries that seeks to enhance protection and sustainable use of the
Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the largest of the western hemisphere. MBRS has established a monitoring program that helps
marine resources administrators in decision-making, directed to preserve the health of the reef.
Aspects covered in this course included sampling protocols for pollutants in water, sediments and organisms, the preservation
of the samples for subsequent analysis and the shipment of samples to certified laboratories. The monitored pollutants include
pesticides of agricultural origin concentration in sediments and animals, biological indicators of stress, water quality indicators,
and the presence of coliform bacteria.
This training was focused on support agencies personnel in each of the MBRS countries that participate in the monitoring
program. These in-country support agencies include universities, research centres, and government and non-governmental
organizations in the coast.
Parallel to this training, the launching of the MBRS region pollution monitoring was carried out. The results from this monitoring
campaign will be part of the environmental base line, providing an indication of the health of the reef. Pollution monitoring results
will also be incorporated in the Regional Environmental Information System, REIS.
The training was carried out by specialists of the region, and was coordinated by MBRS' Environmental Monitoring Specialist.
National Monitoring Coordinators were in charge of the local coordination in the countries.
The Infusion of Coastal and Marine Themes
into Education Curricula
Project continues to promote the incorporation of coastal and marine
themes into the national education curricula of all four MBRS countries.
Building upon widespread teacher training activities held last year,
during which the Primary and Secondary School Teacher's Guides were
introduced, the MBRS is continuing to disseminate these Teachers Guides
to a greater number of teachers to support teacher training activities
to enable teachers to implement the activities described in these Guides.
The MBRS Project, from August 17th to the 19th, supported the delivery
of a series of Coastal Teacher Training Workshops entitled "Incorporating
the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Themes into the National Primary Curriculum".
The training courses were organized by the Belize Fishermen Cooperative
Association (BFCA) and the UNDP-GEF COMPACT Project, in association
with the Ministry of Education's Quality Assurance & Development Services
(QADS) Unit. These four workshops, which are supported by a COMPACT
grant to the BFCA, were delivered in Placencia Village (August 17th),
Punta Gorda Town (August 18th), Sarteneja Village (August 18th) and
Belize City (August 19th). The goal of the COMPACT grant is to support
community-based educational interventions as an integral part of BFCA's
Capacity-Building for Self-Sustainability programme.
The MBRS Project in collaboration with Ministries of Education from
Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico, developed the Primary and Secondary
School Teachers' Guides which were used as a basis for the course instruction.
These guides were first presented to a regional workshop in San Pedro
Sula, Honduras in July of 2003, where 60 primary and secondary teachers
were trained as trainers. Subsequently, a second workshop was jointly
delivered in December 2003 by the MBRS Project and the Ministry of Education
in Belize where 55 primary and secondary teachers were trained as trainers.
Selected teachers from the Ministry of Education of Belize, already
trained with the MBRS Project, conducted the series of Coastal Teacher
This series of workshops is an important initiative that will support
the Ministry of Education in continuing to integrate the MBRS Thematic
the National Curriculum. It is also an important part of BFCA's goal
of sharing coastal educational material throughout the country at local
communities where BFCA's members reside.
The long-term objective of the MBRS Project's environmental education
activities is to prepare students for their future roles as responsible
decision makers and guardians of our coastal and marine resources.
MBRS Offers Eco-Tourism
Training for Fishers
The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Systems Project (MBRS) contracted the
Green Reef Environmental Institute and the Toledo Institute for Development
and Environment (TIDE) to conduct eco-tourism training courses for communities
of the MBRS transboundary areas during the summer of 2004. The primary
purpose of this regional training effort was to provide fishers of the
MBRS region with new skills in alternative livelihoods in order to reduce
economic pressure on the fisheries resources of the region. Commencing
on May 31, 2004 and concluding on August 12, 2004, training courses
were offered in a variety of eco-tourism related skills, including natural
history tour guiding, kayaking, snorkeling, sports diving and fly-fishing.
MBRS, together with Green Reef Environmental Institute, conducted several
training courses in San Pedro, Belize with a total of 54 participants
from the MBRS Northern Transboundary Area of Belize and Mexico. The
first 2 training courses were held within the week of May 31 to June
5, 2004 where a total of 12 Mexicans and 15 Belizeans acquired skills
in snorkeling and kayaking as well as diving in open water. The third
training course was held from June 7 to 11, 2004 where 13 participants,
7 Belizeans and 6 Mexicans, received training in fly-fishing. The final
training course targeting the communities of the Northern Transboundary
Area was held from June 14 to 19, 2004 where 8 Belizean and 6 Mexican
participants were taught skills in natural history tour guiding.
In a parallel effort, MBRS joined forces with the Toledo Institute for Development
and the Environment (TIDE) to conduct similar eco-tourism training courses
in Punta Gorda Town, Belize for fishers of the MBRS Southern Transboundary
Area of Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. The first course taught participants
basic skills in natural history, focusing on bird and plant identification.
The course, which ran from June 7 to 11, 2004, began in the classroom,
but led the participants to various areas in Toledo rich in plant and
bird life including Paynes Creek National Park, Port Honduras Marine
Reserve, Blue Creek and Aguacate. The 17 participants, which included
5 Guatemalans, 5 Hondurans and 7 Belizeans, learned about ecosystem
functions as well as techniques for introducing tourists to the birds
and plants of the MBRS region.
Two diving courses were held. The first was conducted from June 28 to
July 6, 2004 in English for participants from Belize. The second course
was conducted n Spanish from July 6 to 16, 2004, for participants from
Guatemala and Honduras. Individual English and Spanish kayaking and
snorkeling courses were also conducted. The first was held from July
26 to 30, 2004 for Belizean participants, while the second was held
from August 9 to 12, 2004 for participants from Honduras and Guatemala.
Finally, a fly-fishing course was held from August 2 to 6, 2004 with
participants from Honduras, Guatemala and Belize.
common objective of all these courses is to improve the capacity of
marine and coastal communities in the MBRS region through training in
alternative livelihoods. The MBRS Project seeks to reduce stress on
the reef by providing alternatives to local fisher folks through increased
income from eco-tourism activities as well as increased awareness of
the importance of conservation.
embarks on Activities for Project Year IV
9 and 10, 2004, the MBRS Project together with its regional colleagues
discussed and finalized a program of activities for its 4th Project
Year at the 4th Ordinary Meeting of the MBRS Technical Working Groups
held at the Princess Hotel, Belize City, Belize. A total of 50 participants
from the four MBRS Countries spent two days discussing the achievements
of the past year and developing the Annual Work Plan and Budget for
Project Year IV, which runs from July 2004 to June 2005. After the meeting,
the MBRS Project staff finalized the Annual Work Plan and Budget based
on the discussions during the meeting to produce a final draft to be
presented for approval to the Regional Steering Committee.
The day following the TWG Meetings, the participants had a unique opportunity
to enjoy Belize's natural beauty, taking advantage of an Inland Tour
of the Cedar Cabins Botanical Trails and a Marine Tour of the Hol Chan
Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley.
The 6th Ordinary Meeting of the Regional Steering Committee was held
at the end of June 2004 in Belize City, Belize to discuss and approve
the Annual Work Plan and Budget for Project Year IV. This 4th Annual
Work Plan describes the activities to be carried out during the period
July 2004 to June 2005. During the 2002-2003 fiscal year, an accelerated
rate of execution was adopted and has been maintained, in an effort
to minimize the effects of the delay in the Declaration of Effectiveness
of the Project. Even though the Project will continue investments in
activities that are actually processes initiated during previous years,
several new investments will be included in response to the recommendations
of the Mid-Term Review, as well as investments in other activities with
tangible outputs in the short term.
The activities to be carried out during Project Year 4 includes, among
others, the monitoring of Marine Protected Areas effectiveness, continuation
of the Synoptic Monitoring Program, data processing using the Regional
Environmental Information System, additional training in alternative
livelihoods, a fisher-folk congress, Cruise Ship Policy development,
the continuation of the awareness campaign including radio programs
for children, beach clean-up campaigns, etc. Also, under Regional Coordination,
investments will be made on a transboundary cooperation meeting, policy
formulation, the consultative group, and the preparation of the Tulum
+ 8 Symposium. This work plan will have a particular emphasis on policy
formulation, as a follow-up to the broad policy framework developed
during Project Year 3.
The activities proposed for Project Year 4 are consistent with the objectives
and goals of the Project, as well as with the recommendations of the
Mid-Term Review conducted in March 2004. They are representative of
the high level of dynamism that characterizes the MBRS Project and are
responsive to the adaptive management that this Project demands.
Innovative Park Rangers Training Course
The Mesoamerican Barrier Reef Systems region (MBRS) includes more than 60 officially declared Marine Protected Areas (MPA's). Nevertheless, different
analyses indicate that many of those MPA's have few parks rangers with technical knowledge on the principles of MPA management and other skills necessary
to perform the tasks described in the parks' management plans.
A park ranger's job involves site protection, environmental monitoring, protection of local fauna and fisheries from illegal fishing and poaching, education of the
community about natural resource management and acting as a liaison between the authorities and stakeholders.
In response to the need for training, the MBRS Project, in coordination with the Regional Environmental Program for Central American (PROARCA), has organized
a training course for park rangers. The topics to be covered in the course include the importance of MPAs, ecology of coastal and marine ecosystems, as well
as skills training in navigation, maintenance of marine equipment, first aid, environmental education, law enforcement and administration.
24 park rangers from MPAs throughout the Mesoamerican region will attend this training course, which will be held from May 10 to 14 at the Princess Hotel in Belize City. The training course will include practical and theoretical concepts and a field trip to the Hol Chan and Bacalar Chico Marine Reserves.
The partnership between MBRS and PROARCA is a joint effort to support our Marine Parks and protect the cultural heritage in Mesoamerica by helping rangers
to improve their skills.
Working Meeting on Monitoring the Effectiveness of Marine Protected Area Management
From February 23rd to 25th, 2004, the MBRS Project, in coordination with the PROARCA Program, held a Working Meeting in Guatemala City to discuss Monitoring
the Effectiveness of Marine Protected Area (MPA) Management . In this meeting, the following topics were discussed:
Methodologies that have already been adopted by some countries.
Personnel capable of measuring all the proposed indicators.
The appropriate use of a methodology that integrates
Administrative, Biophysical and Socioeconomic factors.
Key participants at this Working Meeting were the Directors of the 16 priority MPAs of the MBRS region, Head of Departments of the government offices
in charge of MPAs from the 4 MBRS countries, the MBRS National Coordinators, and experts who have experience with various methodologies. A total of
43 persons participated representing Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama.
The principal goal of this meeting was to identify a methodology that integrates those indicators which can most feasibly be measured, with national indicators,
already in use by particular countries, which can be applied at the regional level. The discussion was based on the following sources: Recommendations on a
Methodology for Monitoring the Effectiveness of MPA Management, which has been published by the MBRS Project, the Score Card to Assess Progress in
Achieving Management Effectiveness Goals for Marine Protected Areas, and the methodologies designed by PROARCA.
It is expected that as a result of this joint effort, a document will be produced which offers a hybrid methodology, and which includes step-by-step guidelines,
and tables detailing monitoring indicators, frequency, and the agency responsible for their implementation. This should accomplish the standardization of a
minimal protocol to measure the effectiveness of MPA management, especially for those MPAs in the transboundary areas with a high level of connectivity
within the MBRS region.
MBRS Launches the Regional Environmental Information System
The MBRS Project is implementing the Regional Environmental Information System, a database for the management and analysis of the data collected through its
Synoptic Monitoring Program. To launch this regional database, the MBRS Project conducted a training course entitled "Training of Trainers in the Use of the
Regional Environmental Information System" in which 24 participants from Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico learned how to use this database to enter and
manipulate data. The course was held at the computer labs of Worldcom Technologies in Belize City, Belize from February 23rd to 28th, 2004.
Subsequent to the training, all participants in this training course will assist in delivering a "National Training Course in the Use of the Regional Environmental
Information System" in their respective home countries, in order to train a greater number of database users.
The users being trained are the biologists from each country who are participating in the Project's recently established regional Synoptic Monitoring Program as
well as representatives from partner agencies who are providing information technology support to the Project. Through this regional monitoring program, information
is being collected on coral reef ecology, mangrove and seagrass ecology, marine pollution and water quality, and physical oceanography from the northern tip of
the Yucatan Peninsula to the Bay Islands of Honduras, encompassing the countries of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras.
The database will continue to grow in scope as modules for the management of data relating to the monitoring of socio-economic factors, fish aggregation sites,
and management effectiveness of Marine Protected Areas are added in the near future.
The implementation of these regional monitoring programs and the Regional Environmental Information System database are critical elements in the Project's
overall strategy to improve the quantity and quality of scientific and socio-economic information relating to the health and use of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef
Systems, which it seeks to conserve. By collecting sound information throughout the MBRS region and producing analytical results regarding its health and
management, the Project will be able to provide policy and decision-makers, resource users, and the general public with the information they need to improve
management of and appreciation for this globally recognized World Heritage Site.
Construction of Multi-purpose Centers in Transboundary Parks
On January 9, 2004, the MBRS Project, the Government of Guatemala, and FUNDAECO, inaugurated the Rio Sarstun Multi-purpose Center
within the Rio Sarstun Multiple Use Area of Guatemala. This is the second such Multi-purpose Center established through the efforts of the
MBRS Project in coordination with the park managers and national governments.
On December 10, 2003, the first Multi-purpose Center was inaugurated at the Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve and National Park by the MBRS Project
and the Government of Belize. The MBRS Project is supporting the construction of a total of 5 such centers within transboundary marine protected areas in the
MBRS Region. The three remaining centers are being constructed at Arrecifes de Xcalak National Park in Mexico, where construction began in December 2003,
the Sapodilla Cayes Marine Reserve in Belize, and the Utila Turtle Harbor Marine Reserve and Wildlife Refuge in Honduras.
The MBRS Project embarked on this infrastructure development in January 2003, when an Architect was contracted for the design and supervision of building construction.
During the month of February 2003, site visits were conducted to the MPA's specified, in order that the Architect could obtain a clear picture of the conditions
of each area and be able to produce an environmentally approriate design, which would be the same for all 5 buildings. Construction of the first center began shortly thereafter.
Each center has an administrative office, a visitor center, rooms for park rangers, a room for special visitors, a
warehouse, bathrooms and showers. These centers will enable improved implementation of the Management Plans,
primarily by strengthening the education and public use programs, since they will provide adequate facilities for visitors, researchers, and storage
of supplies and equipment. The provision of these Multi-purpose Centers is part of the Project's overall program to improve management within
MPA's of the MBRS region.