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Mexico Designates Archipelago off Pacific Coast as a National Park

ISSN:1054-8890
LADB Article ID: 80462
Category/Department: Mexico
Date: 2017-11-29
By: Carlos Navarro

The Mexican government has moved to designate four remote islands that are part of an internationally recognized biosphere as a national park. The islands of Socorro, San Benedicto, Roca Partida, and Clarión form part of the Revillagigedo Archipelago, which the UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated as a world heritage site in 2016. President Enrique Peña Nieto signed the decree declaring the site as a national park in late November, drawing praise from a wide range of columnists and environmental advocates. The site is located 390 km (242 miles) southwest of the southernmost point of the Baja California Peninsula and 700 km (435 miles) west of the port of Manzanillo in Colima state. The archipelago, which is sometimes described as the “Galapagos of North America” in reference to the richly biodiverse islands off the coast of South America, is part of a submerged mountain range, with the four islands, which are the peaks of volcanoes, emerging above sea level. The isolated nature of the islands has allowed 750 species of animals to thrive, including four endangered species of turtles. Additionally, there are 233 types of plants on the site, many of which are unique to the area.

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