Our Perspectives


Looking Back on 2018

Looking Back on 2018

by | Dec 1, 2018 | Perspectives

It’s been a very eventful year in our project. The end of the year is rolling around so quickly, we decided to take the opportunity to touch base and share some good news and important updates with you. 

With world-wide coral bleaching events in the last few years, and the archipelago where we reside on the Caribbean side of Panama severely affected, it’s been a struggle to find hope in the news about climate change.

There is good news…

In marine labs around the world there have been incredible advancements in recovering coral life. Despite the bleaching, there are evolving coral survivors and they can be used to provide “seed stock” for coral nurseries, that are then grown and planted in artificial reefs. In fact, some of the techniques used to recover these coral specimens have revealed some astounding results where corals are growing back at unprecedented rates! As these reefs recover with the planted corals, diverse fish populations return, and entire underwater ecosystems are being rebuilt. 

At Coral Restoration Panama, we had three big goals for 2018:

  • Get our licensing from Panama finalized to install the nursery
  • Secure at least 1000 coral clones
  • Install 50 artificial reef structures

With 2018 coming to a close, not only have we achieved all of our goals, but by the end of the year, we will double the amount of nursery stock we are raising – 2000 clones! 

In addition to achieving these milestones, we have also been amazed at the difference we have made in the last three years in the amount and variety of marine life now thriving in our “proof of concept” reef. Hannig Reef – named in honor of the mother of one of our donors – where once cans and bottles festooned the seabed, now corals, colorful sponges, sea urchins, lobsters and an array of tropical fish too numerous to count inhabit the once nearly lifeless environment.

It’s been so encouraging to see this progress in our work, to finally obtain the licensing we needed to build nurseries, and to see tangible results in our efforts of helping the coral recover.

Looking Toward 2019:

We are putting in place a strategy for Coral Restoration Panama to ensure our continued growth and impact. In the coming months we will be sharing more of our story, our progress and how you can be involved. 

We need your help. 

We are the only organization in the country of Panama that is actively pursuing the restoration of coral reef environments. Contributions to this organization during the past few years have made it possible to begin the rebuilding of the reef structure and coral systems in the Bocas del Toro Caribbean archipelago. 

Using modern restoration techniques and regional educational workshops, we have already made a difference in re-establishing the fisheries of the area which are so important to the indigenous people living there who depend on subsistence from a sustainable ocean environment. 

As the end of the year rolls around, it is your opportunity to put your dollars towards making a difference, and we would like you to consider Coral Restoration Panama. We are a fully non-profit 503c organization and your donations are tax deductible. 

Take this opportunity to put your dollars into an organization where your donation will have profound, lasting impact.

Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and contributions to this effort. We wouldn’t be where we are without the incredible support of our mentors, donors, core team and industry partners who have given of their time, resources and expertise so generously. We are grateful for you. I am grateful for you.

Here’s to a fantastic year in 2019,

Doug Marcy
Coral Restoration Panama

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