Summer has shown her face!

With air temperatures hitting the high 90s this week, one has to admit that our mild Loreto spring has slipped away. While the afternoons feel steamy, the warm nights are a bit of heaven for outdoor dining and evening walks. Loreto beaches are filled from afternoon into the rise of moon behind Carmen with children splashing in the warm water and the spread of family picnics on the sand. Volleyball games pop up at the north end of the Malecon, and kids chase one another on scooters up and down the waterfront. There’s a sense of happiness permeating the air.

The solstice has crossed our horizon, June 21, marked the instance when the sun reached its highest apex from the earth’s surface, a time that ancient astronomers called the moment when the “sun stands still.” The word solstice derives from the Latin, combining the words so for ‘Sun’ and ‘sistere’ for “To Stand Still.” Days began to shorten from the 22nd forward, although the shift through the summer months is almost imperceptible.

Change is in the air, and not only with the weather.

Eco-Alianza is hardly standing still even with the heat, our focus on building strong community ties and advancing support for the health of our environment. continues under the strong leadership of our Executive Director, L.C.P. Carlos Posadas Solano. CEMA (Centro de Estudios del Medio Ambiente), led by Executive Director, Sula Vanderplank, Ph.D., extends the outreach of scientific research and the expansion of our field station, a Sister Reserve in the Natural Reserve System of the University of California. With CEMA as the hub, we look forward to researchers from all over the world, engaging in exploration of the marine and terrestrial landscape that makes Loreto uniquely special.

Below, a quick overview of just a few of the projects and programs supported by your contributions and generous donations.

Plastic Recycling

Perhaps you’ve noticed, or have heard about, the green recycling bins scattered around town. Our esteemed Board member, Enrique Grajeda Cazarez, has been working with the municipality to create and maintain a plastics collection program – Sistema de Reciclaje de Plásticos Municipal – for Loreto. The bins, easily distinguished by their green tops are for the deposit of plastics, are then collected, compressed, and sent to be repurposed. There are two phases to this program. The first is to determine the ability of the populace to utilize the opportunity to recycle and the financial viability of the program. The second, to sort the plastics into the four types:

  1. Botellas de Plástico PET – These are the clear bottles used mostly for water and juices.
  2. Galon Lechero – The gallon bottles that are translucent, again used for water.
  3. Envases Varios – These are colored plastic containers.
  4. Javas Fruteras – Plastic bins with slotted sides for storing fruit and vegetables.

Each type of plastic has unique qualities and is repurposed in a different manner. We hope that the citizens embrace this project, and we can cut down on plastics that end up in landfills and on our beaches. We can all do our part to make recycling part of our daily lives and a success for the Loreto community.

Loreto 2050 Futures Assessment Study – BIG NEWS!

Eco-Alianza has partnered with The Institute of the Americans and Innovaciones Alumbra to commission a study of the overall environmental and socio-economic state of Loreto to determine how we envision our ideal community in the year 2050. This study will be inclusive, with members from all aspects of Loreto’s private stakeholders and government organizations represented.

Our spring season was anything BUT quiet.

The list of activities is long and exciting. As reported earlier, CEMA, in January, hosted a Science Street Fair, which introduced different aspects of exploration and investigation of the natural world to visitors and residents alike.

Watch highlights:

Visiting Scientist Talks

This ongoing program, which consists of lectures, photographic presentations, and Q&A sessions, brings together the community with scientific topics of interest. Recent talks, attended by both youth and adults, have included:

“Propogation of Stony Corals”
Carlos Cáceres of Effecto Arena A.C.,
Dr. Cáceres shared new information about the propagations of stony corals, of the Pocillopora genus, for the purpose of restoring coral reefs, both in the Area for the Protection of Flora and Fauna, Blanadra (#Balandra), and here in Loreto as part of the restoration of the area outside Puerto Escondido. The propagation program aims to offset the negative effects of anthropogenic activities, such as degradation caused by excessive tourism and the impacts of shipwrecks on the seafloor.

“A platform for artistic expeditions”
Fernando Martín
Mr. Martin is an artist and writer, as well as captain of the @Stultifera Navis Institutom, a platform for artistic expeditions. His presentation focused on the field of expanded arts and performative literature, based on research processes in natural spaces. Mr. Martín is the coordinator of the cycle “The games of Leviathan”, an Art-Science research project with gray whales (#ballenas grises). Martín was present at the last Tianguis Científico in January sharing his footage and images.

“The Importance of Conservation of Native Fauna of B.C.S.”
Bio.Gerardo Marron
Mr. Marron, from Pronatura Noreste AC, presented, “The Importance of the Conservation of Oases of B.C.S” His talk focused on the conservation of oases as freshwater ecosystems, with special emphasis on the endemic bird, Beldings’s yellowthroat, and launched the wetlands conservation course.

Wetlands in the Desert

Eco-Alianza’s program, CEMA, collaborated with the Arizona Department of Fish and Game in, a comprehensive course on wetlands conservation. The course included many different wetland systems such as mangroves, salt-marshes, riparian areas and arroyos as well as oases and wet meadows. Participation was broad and classes were taught by a range of professors and specialists including our own staff and the National Park Director Rodolfo Palacios Romo.

Training botanists in Cross-Border Rare Plant Identification

CEMA was recently contracted to help train botanists from San Diego Botanic Garden in the identification of several species of cross-border rare plants. We took advantage of this opportunity to participate in the border bioblitz with Expediciones Botanicas and San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance.

Education Expedition with Triplefin

Funded by the Next Generation of Sonoran Desert Researchers, we organized a week of educational expeditions in the Loreto National Marine Park (PNBL), in collaboration with Dr. Adrian Mungia, to promote transdisciplinary research and student engagement. Our students from UABCS focused on marine environmental DNA and terrestrial-marine connectivity. Together, we spent two days learning from community stakeholders including: fisherman, teachers, artists, service providers and government employees.

City Nature Challenge

One of the most exciting activities this spring, was Loreto’s participation in the international City Nature Challenge, the biggest bioblitz in the world. For three days, 28 April – 1 May, cities around the world participated in the observations of nature. It was an opportunity to take part in one of the largest scientific events in the world, to help better understand, and therefore take care of, nature that lives in and around urban areas. The contest was open to everyone!

2023 was the first year that Loreto participated, and with CEMA;s sponsorship, two prize categories were created. One for youth aged 12-18, and the other wide open, with honors going to the highest number of observations. Over 600 young students, from four middle schools and one high school participated in training events.

Directions were simple: download the iNaturalist app to a cellphone, join “Reto Urbano Naturalistia Loreto”, and go out and take photos of every living thing over four consecutive days. Plants, insects, birds, lizards, etc. Upload the photos to iNaturalist for identification and verification in the following six days.

Loreto, as a first-time entrant, impressed the global community by placing first in the state and eleventh among participating cities in the nation, with a total of 4,141 observations and 832 species.

The top six students were awarded an overnight camping trip at Isla Monserrrat, where they continued their now trained eyes in observing nature.

Youth Camp with night hikes

We partnerned with Juventud during their weekend event “Campamento Juventud Loreto,” where 50 young people participated in night hikes looking for scorpions, owls and tarantulas, and stargazing with telescopes.

Beach Cleanup

Bio-diversity week was the first “Latin American Minga”, a country-wide effort. We partnered with the Loreto Bay National Marine Park in beach cleanup efforts. A total of 90 participants collected 350 kilograms of litter.

Optimized Resource Management

Eco-Alianza continues to press for clean bodies of water and beaches for the benefit of our communities and the continuity of our ecosystems and environmental services, encouraging citizen participation. As a member of the Waterkeeper Alliance, we participate in regular monitoring of the water off twelve of the most popular beaches. The results of the testing are published on the SWIMGUIDE app for smart phones.

Monitoring Of Priority Species

One of our goals is to help with the restoration of the populations of priority species within the Bahía de Loreto National Park. We help to:

  • Initiate training sessions
  • Monthly monitoring with Grupo Tortuguero de las Californias (GTC) supervision
  • Include new members in the permit
  • Recommended training in net mending
Environmental Education

Our “Nature Squadron.” the environmental education programs of Eco-Alianza have continued to generate opportunities for our children and youth to develop the knowledge, skills, abilities, attitudes, and values necessary to build a sustainable future.

From activities such as a “Small whales” (Ballenitas) group, with a youth market stand presentation, to a day of water-based activities in collaboration with Sea Kayak, in celebration of the work of the students.

In honor of World Biodiversity Day, we held a talk for preschool children and their families, at the Malecon, sharing information about the main species that that can be seen in the PNBL. On World Turtle Day, a set of students from a preschool visited CenCoMA to discuss our monitoring projects and work with them on this topic.

Our educational outreach includes the families and communities of Ligüi to the south and San Juan Londó to the north. San Juan Londó is an agricultural camp of great importance to the economic sector of Loreto, and we are proud of expanding our educational reach to these communities..


#Loretoideal Movement is one of the main interlocutors between the community and the municipal government, establishing effective and respectful collaborative relationships that promote the sustainable development and prosperity of Loreto. Eco-Alianza was an early supporter of the community-based movement and has continued to provide support and guidance. As of 2023, the network has become a strengthened, representative and autonomous movement. We feel that Loreto Ideal will become an integral part of our Loreto 2050 project.

“Save the Treasures We Love for Future Generations”

And last, but certainly not least: SAVE THE DATE! NOVEMBER 11, 2O23.

This year’s annual fundraising GALA will again be held in the gorgeous ballroom of Hotel La Misión de Loreto. The GALA will support all of Eco-Alianza’s programs to help protect and preserve the jewel known as Loreto.

Reservations will open on September 1, including options to reserve a table for yourselves and friends. As always, a sumptuous dinner, live music and dancing will blend with a silent and live auction. All proceeds go to expanding our mission.