LOCAL ACTION STRATEGY:
LACK OF PUBLIC AWARENESS
U.S. Virgin Islands
U.S. Coral Reef Task Force Meeting March 2007
Susan Curtis, U. S. Virgin Islands Division of Coastal Zone Management
ISSUE & IMPACT: LACK OF PUBLIC AWARENESS
Impacts in the USVI:
* Socioeconomic values provided by
heritage and aesthetic values of reefs
* Environmental protection from storms and beach erosion
* More sustainable tourism industry
PRIORITIES: LACK OF PUBLIC AWARENESS
The UVSI directed all LAS activities for fiscal years 2005 to 2007 within the
St. Croix East End Marine Park.
Top priorities for Lack of Awareness:
To build awareness of the importance of coral reefs & teach and encourage
positive behaviors that will protect and nurture them through:
1) Integrating coral reef education into the schools.
2) Promoting the understanding of the values of coral reefs locally.
3) Increasing coral reef education for visitors through hotels, cruise ships etc.
... Ca j ribbean Sea
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SI- East End Marine Park
.Mi A Shelf area to 100 fahoms
Virgin Islands Network of Environmental
Educators Member Logos
,%xr'0 OCEAN PARK
V-^?I" .4lW s-
The Nature $
SAVING THE LAST GREAT PLACES ON( EARTH
St. Croix, USVI
The Ocean Conservancy
SW IEW -
'a S. IN-0
* Development of an organizational structure with 2
active VINE chapters; St. Croix and St. Thomas/St.
* Database of environmental programs, educators and
resources in USVI
* Annual VINE teacher workshops
* VINE sponsored media campaigns
* Quarterly newsletter distributed to territorial schools
* Series of capacity building workshops for members
* VINE model in development in British Virgin Islands
conso rti u m
consorti u m
The Virgin Islands Coral
An agency-neutral network created to develop a
coral reef awareness media campaign for the
VICCC Project Scope:
* Target residents and visitors of VI
* Materials will be produced in both English and Spanish .
* Increase coral reef conservation and stewardship of
* Broad-based education campaign
Project Outcomes/Products: Duratrans advertising placed in Miami, DC
and NY airports
Local and Visitor targeted video PSAs
Beverage Coasters (Coming Soon.)
Posters and Banners
^ *Website (www.coralreefs.vi)
Duratrans installed in Miami International Airport Website (www.coralreefs.vi)
VICCC Members: --T...
Conservancy. The Ocean Conservancy B^
LSAVING THE LAS] GREAT PLCES UK EARTH "d-
Environmental Mobile Van
* Development of a mobile environmental education
and outreach program
CHALLENGES: LACK OF PUBLIC AWARENESS
* Incorporating participation into work plans
* Lack of financial incentive for the individual
organizations Limited potential collaboration efforts
* Technical capacity = the one with the $$
NEEDS: LACK OF PUBLIC AWARENESS
* Evaluate current LAS initiative
* Diversify LAS efforts beyond STX East End Marine Park
* Provide financial incentives through access to LAS funding
for project partners to implement projects
FUTURE PLANS: LACK OF PUBLIC AWARENESS
Practice adaptive management in determining
direction and form for future LAS initiative
* Reinvigorate the LAS initiative based upon
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U.S. Coral Reef Task Force Meeting
I. Integrating coral reef education into the schools
Meet with Science Coordinators and Administrators
Hire an Environmental Education Specialist to teach, conduct
workshops and coordinate coral reef education activities.
II. Promote understanding of the value of coral reefs locally
Develop a snorkeling excursion program for local residents in order
to increase awareness about coral reefs
Ill. Increase coral reef education for visitors through hotels,
cruise ships etc.
* Kiosks at the St. Croix Airport and Christiansted boardwalk with
written materials and a billboard about the East End Marine Park
* St. Croix East End Marine Park video and materials for hotels
SDevelop guidelines and written materials for private tour operators
about coral reef resources and the East End Marine Park.
Educational snorkeling excursions for visitors