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The regional program, Management of Aquatic Resources and Alternative Development (MAREA), strengthens coastal and marine resources management in order to reduce environmental threats, conserve biodiversity, and improve livelihoods.

One area covered by the program is the Caribbean Cahuita-Bocas del Toro coastal ecosystem shared by Panama and Costa Rica. Increased development in the area, overfishing, marine pollution, runoff caused by deforestation and agriculture practices, along with industrial and urban pollution threaten the fragile and unique ecosystem along this coastline.

USAID, through MAREA, promotes effective monitoring and enforcement of coastal and marine resource policies and legislation. Assistance also fosters incentives for the conservation and sustainable use of coastal and marine ecosystems.

To reduce threats posed by unsustainable fishing practices and coastal development in Cahuita-Bocas del Toro, USAID-financed technical assistance and training focuses on promoting rights-based management regimes and best fisheries practices; conserving critical marine biodiversity; and improving economic well-being of marine resource stakeholders.

Sustainable Community Forestry

The objective of the Sustainable Community Forestry in Darien program is to improve biodiversity in the Choco-Darien eco-region by promoting the sustainable management of the forests and other sustainable economic activities in the Darien.

This activity will build capacity within the indigenous communities in the Darien to manage their forests and other natural resources in a manner that is sustainable, protects the biodiversity inherent to the region, and improves livelihoods in the short run.

This program will specifically target unsustainable resource use in indigenous reserves, and will address issues ranging from unmanaged timber harvesting, forest clearing, illegal logging, to inefficient wood harvesting and processing practices, and unsustainable agricultural practices. Climate change adaptation activities are also contemplated.

Last updated: August 06, 2013

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