Eco-Alianza has had a great 2013 and we’re excited about next year. I know you care about our special place on the Baja peninsula and the people who live here. And we all know that being good stewards ofour environment is fundamental to our quality of life, which is reflected in Eco-Alianza’s mission:
To protect and conserve our natural and cultural environment by empowering civil society and government to jointly create healthy and prosperous communities.
With your past generous support, we are doing more than our part for the greater Loreto region and the Bay of Loreto National Park.
Some of our key accomplishments for 2013 include:
- Provided support for 20 local fishermen who are participating in a Community Surveillance Committee in the Bay of Loreto National Park to assist the Park and legal authorities with monitoring and enforcement.
- Participated in the initial meeting between the Bay of Loreto National Park, the Channel Islands National
- Park and the University of California at Santa Barbara for the Sister Park project.
- Provided support to the Loreto Municipal Council’s approval of the Ecological Land Management Plan for the Loreto Municipality.
- Inaugurated the Community Center for the Environment (CenCoMA), which serves as headquarters of Eco-Alianza de Loreto, and is already actively hosting workshops and meetings related to conservation in the Loreto region.
- Enrolled 40 new students in the Environmental Education leadership program.
Our goals and objectives for 2014 include:
- Improve the enforcement of park rules and regulations. We will increase the awareness of stakeholders about the rules and regulations of the Bay of Loreto National Park.
- Launch the Sister Park project by collaborating with our partners to write a strategic plan for the project.
- Increase the awareness of stakeholders and local residents about the importance of protecting the municipal watershed of Loreto, the source of drinking water for local residents.
- Create a citizens committee of “Playas Limpias” (clean beaches) to monitor compliance and prevent pollution of our beaches.
- Implement Phase II of Community Center for the Environment (CenCoMA), including installing solar panels on the roof, creating a native garden, and remodeling a boat garage into a natural history museum/interpretative learning center.
- Provide tools and training to expand participation in environmental and ecological education of local school children. In 2014, we will expand the education of Loreto youth and their families to understand and value the Bay of Loreto National Park and know how pollution is caused by solid waste and wastewater.
- Monitor development in the coastal zone to avoid negative impacts on near-shore water quality.
- Collaborate with the San Diego Natural History Museum on their program to create watershed curriculum under their “Smart School” program for Loreto, a proposed multi-year program that has already been successfully implemented in several municipalities of Baja California and Baja California Sur.
Immediate funding needs:
- Funding for the expanded role of our Loreto Coastkeeper program to conduct water quality testing.
- Funding for a strategic plan for the Sister Park project.
- Funding an engineering study of the fresh water and failed sewage infrastructure. This urgent need resulted from the pollution crisis caused by the October, 2013 tropical storms, which fully exposed the antiquated sewage system in Loreto. The City has an urgent need to update the system’s facilities and Eco-Alianza is collaborating with the private sector and government authorities to fix the problem.
- Funding for public outreach materials in the environmental education campaigns which will focus on responsible fishing and consumption and water pollution.