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The Nature Conservancy and artisanal fishing unions commit to conservation

 Signed the first week of 2014, the agreement commits the Conservancy and the Huiro Fishing Association to work together to restore and protect marine resources and environments in the association’s 188-acre allocated fishing ground. The fishing zone was allocated to the association in recent years as part of the country’s co-management fishing systems designed to alleviate overfishing crises.

The agreement also promotes the creation of a no-take area to restore productivity and the health of the ocean bed, and the use of science to monitor its effects. Lastly, both organizations commit to looking for ways to diversify livelihoods in order to decrease dependency on fishing by promoting activities such as ecotourism.

 Alfredo Almonacid, Reserve Manager expressed great satisfaction at the signing of the agreement: “The conservation of natural resources as well as of the marine territory in the Huiro union’s allocated fishing grounds and in the Reserve should constitute the pillars of our relationship. This agreement serves to strengthen the relationship and deepen the trust both entities have in each other”. David Cárcamo, president of the Huiro Fishing Association highlighted the importance of legally regulating tourism in the entity’s allocated area and of working with the Conservancy.

The Conservancy already has a successful and formally established working relationship with the Chaihuin Fishing Association that manages the fishing area adjacent to the Huiro zone. The new agreement thus expands the Conservancy’s monitoring and conservation work in the Humboldt Current and strengthens its sustainable fisheries work in the 50,000-acre Valdivian Coastal Reserve managed by the Conservancy.

“Basically this agreement means more marine acres for conservation in the zone”, said Layla Osman, Marine Specialist for the Conservancy in Chile and project lead for the Valdivian seascape project in the Valdivian Coastal Reserve.

 The Conservancy in Chile is partnering with local fishing unions to improve the health and the economic performance of fisheries in Chile by implementing conservation management plans, restoration measures and promoting market incentives in allocated fishing zones.

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