Happy Birthday Cocos Island National Park!

4,000 miles for your 40th Anniversay!

Next June 22 of 2018 we will be celebrating the 40 th Birthday of Cocos Island National Park. What better gift can we give than a well deserved additional 4,000 miles2 of absolute protection?
All fishing activities are currently banned within a 12 nautical mile radius (22 km) surrounding Cocos Island National Park (Video of illegal fishing in Cocos Island).
Nonetheless, this area of absolute protection if not big enough to safeguard endangered highly migratory species (such as sharks and turtles), in which case it is widely acknowledged that “bigger is better”, even for fisheries management. The 11 Aichi Biodiversity Target (Convention on Biological Diversity) aims to attain protection in 10% of marine areas by 2020, particularly areas that are important
for their biodiversity or ecosystem services. In compliance with this target, countries such as the USA, Mexico, Colombia and Ecuador, have increased their marine protected areas around Hawaii, the Revillagigedo Archipielago, Malpelo Island, and the Galapagos Island, respectively.
In September of 2016, President Luis Guillermo Solís committed to increase absolute protection around Cocos Island by 4,000 miles2. Even though the President has been presented with the best scientific information to justify such an action, the long awaited greater absolute protection area has not occurred.
Now is the moment to give Cocos Island National Park the gift that it deserves!
4,000 miles2 for your 40 th Birthday!

Happy Birthday Cocos Island National Park!

4,000 miles for your 40 th Anniversary!

Luis Guillermo Solís
President of Costa Rica
Carlos Alvarado
President Elect
Honorables Sirs,

We hereby respectfully request that the area of absolute protection surrounding Cocos Island National Park be increased by 4,000 miles 2 .
Cocos Island is one of the jewels of the Eastern Tropical Pacific. A better conservation of the endangered highly migratory marine species that occur on the Island however, requires not only a much larger absolute protection area, but also regional policies that protect these species during their migratory movements. We thus call for the area of absolute protection around Cocos Island to be immediately increased by 4,000 miles 2 , y that conversations initiate right away with the authorities of Ecuador for the creation of the “Cocos – Galapagos Swimway”.