WWF congratulates Mexican President Felipe Calderón for cancelling authorization for the Cabo Cortes resort project, which would have put at risk one of the country’s most pristine reef systems in Cabo Pulmo Marine Park.
"It is clear that President Calderón weighed the conclusive scientific evidence showing that this mega project would not only affect the Cabo Pulmo Marine Park, but also other ecosystems in the Gulf of California. His decision sends a clear message that this is not the kind of tourism model that we want for Mexico”, said Omar Vidal, Director General of WWF-Mexico. “Cabo Pulmo is so fragile that it can only tolerate low-density tourism development with minimal impacts on the marine park and surrounding areas, in line with what the local community is already doing”, he added.
Last March, WWF-Mexico handed over a petition containing the signatures of more than 12,000 people from around the world expressing concern about the conservation of Cabo Pulmo’s reef, and asking for the cancellation of the Cabo Cortés project, which represented a severe threat to the health and survival of the not only the species that inhabit the reef, but also the coastal communities that benefit from the reef’s resources.
Were the project to go forward, Cabo Cortés would have serious impacts on the Cabo Pulmo Marine Area, home to one of the most well-preserved reefs in the world and designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The decision to cancel Cabo Cortes represents an opportunity to reinitiate the type of coastal development Mexico should promote in order to guarantee the sustainability of the country’s natural resources and the well-being of its people.
"WWF is ready to work with the Mexican government, the private sector, and local communities in developing a sustainable national tourism model that promotes the social and economic well-being of the country while at the same time protecting our natural treasures", added Vidal.
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Crédito: © Octavio Aburto/iLCP