Funding infusion on way for Galápagos conservation


The new funding will help Ecuador project marine protection farther from the Galápagos Islands’ shores. That will benefit species such as the whale shark (Rhincodon typus, shown above), which has been found to migrate between the Galápagos Islands and Cocos Island in Costa Rica. (Photos, respectively, by Shutterstock and Jonathan Green)

On May 9, 2023, Ecuador announced the world’s biggest debt-for-nature swap. Under the agreement, international creditors would reduce the country’s debt obligations by more than US$1 billion and Ecuador would use roughly a third of these savings to strengthen marine conservation in the waters around the country’s prized Galápagos Islands. Today, little over a year later, the nonprofit corporation established to supervise allocation of the conservation funding, Galápagos Life Fund (GLF), has gained legal status in Ecuador and set up offices on the archipelago’s island of Santa Cruz to begin its work. The past year has been spent creating GLF’s administrative and operational underpinnings, building its legislative and regulatory foundation, and setting its financing priorities, says Mónica Calvopiña, a biologist and the organization’s executive director. In September, the fund will begin financing its first project—an effort by Galápagos National Park and Ecuador’s Navy to improve monitoring... [Log in to read more]

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