Tuesday, June 8, 2010

World Oceans Day: Coral Reef Alliance Making a Difference

In honor of World Oceans Day, I'd like to promote the work of a great organization making a positive difference in protecting coral reefs while supporting local communities at the same time.  From their website:

Coral Reef Manifesto
We believe in the majesty and mystery of coral reefs, in their ability to teach, sustain, inspire, and give life. We are their students and their protectors; we hold the knowing that if reefs die, we all die—plain and simple.

And the reefs are dying, every day. They are being overheated by the rising temperatures of climate change, overfished by commercial fisherman, and overlooked by ambitious developers and tourism operators. But we can change this—together.

We hold the hope for reversing this crisis and believe in the power of community to make change, to find common ground, and to heal. Coral reefs are the oldest biological communities on the planet. And to save this community, we must awaken others and remind them that we are all connected—to the reefs and to each other. We must build alliances and forge connections; we must unite to protect this precious resource.

Founded in 1994, the Coral Reef Alliance (CORAL) is the only international organization working exclusively to unite communities to protect our planet’s coral reefs. We focus on three fundamental catalysts for change:

* marine protected areas (MPAs)
* marine recreation tourism
* local communities

By engaging stakeholders from all three groups—MPA managers, marine tourism operators, and local residents—we build partnerships that establish lasting change and promote coral reef health around the world.

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