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Costa Rica may be green, but faces challenges protecting its blue oceans March 14,2013   |  Source: AIDA

Costa Rica is known as a green country, but it faces a big challenge offshore.

The nation must save its coral reefs.

AIDA, with funding from Conservation International, is releasing a report in Spanish with a comprehensive plan for protecting Costa Rica's 970 km2 of coral reefs from climate change, intensive agriculture, unsustainable fishing, irresponsible tourism and poorly treated industrial runoff and sewage.

"Coral Reefs in Costa Rica" is a country-specific report issued by AIDA that we hope will bring repercussions and pressure around the hemisphere to save these fragile ecosystems. Coral reefs cover about 284,000 km2 of the planet's seabed, and nearly 10% of these are located in the Americas.

The report describes a key reason to protect corals: they are valuable.

Each hectare (2.47 acres) of coral reef is worth an estimated $1 million annually in terms of fishing, tourism and jobs, according to The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity. Reefs also protect communities and other coastal ecosystems from erosion and storms, and provide habitat for more than a quarter of all marine species.

National laws and regulations must be strengthened to ensure reef survival. While Costa Rica is obligated by international treaties like the United Nations Convention


© 2013 AIDA

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