Plan of Action for Caribbean Coral Reefs

A Caribbean-specific Plan of Action is under development to identify priority issues for coral reefs under a changing climate.

The IPCC last week published its report on the impact that climate change is having on humans and the world – and it comes as no surprise that coral reefs take centre stage with already visible impacts.  Nowhere is this more apparent than the Caribbean. Coral reefs are under serious pressure, yet they underpin much of the economic activity and are central to the wellbeing and identity of people throughout the region...

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Building Social Resilience in the Caribbean

Inspiring coral reef managers in the Caribbean to formally incorporate the human dimension into their day-to-day decision making processes.

Most coral reef managers are intimately familiar with their own reefs; they are aware of the drivers that change it, understand the pressures that impact it, and are mindful of the negative impacts that reef degradation can have on the well-being of reef-dependent people.

The Australia Caribbean Coral Reef Collaboration – in partnership with the Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and CARICOM nations of the Caribbean - are using this knowledge, supported by formal datasets, to  develop a Social Resilience Handbook to help managers increase transparency, reduce uncertainty around decision making and make for better outcomes for coral reefs and reef communities worldwide.

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Outlook reporting for St Lucia

An integrated management tool developed for the Great Barrier Reef is being used to help with strategic planning efforts for coastal areas and coral reefs of the Caribbean. 

A small volcanic island in the lesser Antillean arc, St Lucia is best known for its clear and calm waters, spectacular pitons, and over 90km2 of coral reefs, attracting tourists and fishers alike. While St Lucia has been a leader in establishing formal management of its reefs and marine environments, notably in the Soufriere area, there is a growing concern about the implications of increasing tourism, rising demand for fish, population growth, escalating risks from development and climate change. Understanding the current state and future outlook of the Soufriere marine area is essential to strategic management of one of the country’s most valuable natural assets.

Under the Australia Caribbean Coral Reef Collaboration, we’re working with the Soufriere Marine Management Association and the Piton Management Area to develop an Outlook Report for the Pitons and Soufriere Marine Management Areas in Saint Lucia.

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On the case...

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We’ve just added a new ‘case studies’ section to our website, using real life examples to illustrate the latest and best concepts, tools and resources for managing coral reefs in a changing climate – with a distinctive Caribbean flavour.

The case studies will showcase MPA management approaches of our partners and provide guidance to Caribbean and international coral reef managers looking to replicate them.  

·        Explore reef stewardship in greater detail with TIDE in Belize.

·        Check out how CaMPAM + GCFI are facilitating peer-to-peer learning with a recent enforcement workshop in Grenada.

If you’ve got a case study to share, a story, or even just know of some great things happening in the region that you think would be of interest, we’d love to showcase it.  Contact the team at climateandreefs@gmail.com for more information.

A monitoring multi-tool for coral reef managers

As coral reefs decline, our dependency upon them for tourism, fishery production and social wellbeing grows. Confronted with competing values and a growing list of pressures on coral reefs, how are managers to identify the most effective interventions, prioritise their actions and allocate scarce resources? In September 2013, twenty one experts from the Great Barrier Reef, the Caribbean and USA came together to address this need...

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What do Australia and the Caribbean have in common? Stewardship for starters.

While the vast sunburnt continent of Australia and the tiny Caribbean island of Grenada may seem worlds apart, they both share the challenges of protecting their marine environment in a changing climate...

In the spirit of these connections, a delegation of reef managers from Grenada visited Australia in August on a knowledge exchange mission to learn about the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA)’s successful Reef Guardian stewardship program – and share some of their own experiences in inspiring action to help the reef...

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Biodiversity offsets - can they work for coral reefs?

Biodiversity offsetting is emerging as an important tool to help bridge the gap between development and conservation. If implemented within an impact mitigation hierarchy, biodiversity offsets lay the foundations for 'no net loss' (or even net gain) of biodiversity. A flagship project under the Australian-Caribbean Coral Reef Collaboration is exploring the feasibility of biodiversity offsets for Belize. The Collaboration brought together experts from Australia, Belize,  IUCN World Conservation Union and the Business and Biodiversity Offsets Program (BBOP) for a three-day workshop in Belize City. By focusing on marine biodiversity, the Belize project has the potential to make important contributions to global efforts to understand and apply the concept of biodiversity offsetting.

Australia and the Caribbean collaborating on coral reefs

Welcome to the blog of the Australian Caribbean Coral Reef Collaboration.

Our collaboration - bringing together coral reef management experts from Australia and CARICOM nations of the Caribbean - is under way. Coral reef news, project updates and links to resources for reef managers... that's what we will be bringing to you in this blog space. Through the support of the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), we will be partnering up to improve the outlook for the reefs of the Caribbean. Stay tuned for project summaries and updates and useful links.