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Cozumel nature reserve
Lagoons would be protected.

The pros and cons of a new nature reserve in Cozumel were debated at a public 'workshop' meeting last week.

The Municipal and State governments have proposed a protected coastal and sea zone around the north and east of the island.

The meeting was organised by CONANP, the Mexican National Commission for Natural Protected Areas.

In a press release, the Commission said that the new area would cover 46,357 hectares (179 square miles), 8.3% of which would be on dry land and 91.7% in the sea and lagoons (see map below). The aim is to protect vulnerable flora and fauna in the areas.

The plans have been subject to a 30 day public consultation process that finishes tomorrow.

The meeting last week was attended by representatives from the Muncipal, State and Federal governments, the local tourism and fishing industries, environmental organizations, academics and "social-civil" organizations.

A spokesperson for CONANP in Cozumel said that participants "unanimously approved" the creation of the new protected zones.

The area under discussion does not include the land where tycoon real estate developer, Donald Trump, is rumored to want to build a 'mega-development'.

Related news:

Ground-Breaking Environment Agreement, January 23, 2008.

Turtle Lessons Learnt, November 13, 2007.

Trump Silent On Cozumel, March 21, 2007.

New Nature Reserve, March 2, 2006.


Cozumel map
The green area marks the proposed new protected zones.