Dominican Republic and Monaco sign agreement to work on research and conservation of coral reefs

The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, on behalf of the Dominican Republic, signed a cooperation agreement with the Scientific Center of Monaco (Centre Scientifique de Monaco) that will strengthen research and conservation of coral reefs in the country.

In the pact signed by Minister Orlando Jorge Mera and Patrice Cellario, Minister of the Interior of Monaco, it was agreed that scientists and experts will visit the country periodically, which will strengthen the work carried out by the Ministry for the preservation of these marine ecosystems. The visit was coordinated by the Ambassador of the Dominican Republic in France, Rosa Hernández de Grullón and the Principality of Monaco.

During the activity, the Minister of the Environment listed the actions that have been carried out in the country, since the beginning of his administration, to reduce the human pressure that causes the serious deterioration of the reefs, highlighting the cleaning of beaches, mangrove sanitation, awareness programs for the population, as well as the application of Law No. 225-20, on the integral management and co-processing of solid waste.

He also listed partnerships with non-profit organizations, research and conservation of marine ecosystems, as well as strategies for cleaner production, among others.

“We value the interest of the Principality of Monaco, in the research, protection and preservation of the coral reefs of the Dominican Republic and we subscribe, in a responsible, determined and enthusiastic manner to this cooperation initiative, which, with God’s favor and the union of our wills, materializes in the form of a bilateral cooperation agreement, aimed at the implementation of one of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations System,” said Jorge Mera.

It is important to highlight that the Minister of Environment participated in the COP26, where the declaration for “Our Oceans”, sponsored by Prince Albert of Monaco, was signed.

Coral reefs
Coral reefs are our island’s first protection barrier against atmospheric phenomena, as they absorb the energy of the impact of waves, thus preventing beach erosion and protecting coastal communities.

They also provide the sands that form many of our beaches and are major producers of biomass.

The fishing sector depends directly on the production capacity of coral reefs, since they serve as nurseries and refuges for species of commercial interest.

They also have high levels of biodiversity that are of interest to the tourism industry due to the beauty of the underwater landscapes that they provide, allowing activities such as recreational diving.

Centre Scientifique de Monaco
It is a public establishment that provides the Principality of Monaco with the means to conduct scientific research.

It has three research departments: the Department of Marine Biology, Polar Biology and Medical Biology.

The Marine Biology Department works on the biological mechanisms underlying the functioning of coral, tropical (coral reefs) and temperate (cold corals, coralligenous) ecosystems. It also includes an environmental economics axis created in 2010 to define the sensitivity of human populations to climate change, and more particularly to ocean acidification.

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