Feb 6th, 2020
We are big, big fans of the Turneffe Atoll and the Turneffe Atoll Trust which recently won a major victory is protecting one of the most pristine ecosystems left in the Caribbean. With Earth continuing to change in many ways, there are not a lot of places left where you can say that an eco-system and fishery is truly getting better. I’d say confidnently that the Turneffe Atoll is truly one of those places and the proctections now in place will only strengthen that trend.
Our valued partners at Turneffe Flats Lodge continue to help the cause in many fantastic ways and we couldn’t be prouder of their accomplishments and long tenured booking relationship with them. If you’re interested in visiting this incredible ecosystem, please give us a call today.
TURNEFFE ATOLL TRUST PROTECTS 17,000 ACRES
TURNEFFE ATOLL, Belize – Turneffe Atoll Trust, a registered non-governmental environmental
conservation organization, has acquired some 17,000 acres of national land at Belize’s Turneffe Atoll to
be conserved in perpetuity through establishment of the Turneffe Land Trust, announced Craig Hayes,
board chairman of Turneffe Atoll Trust (TAT).
As trustee, TAT is charged with safeguarding this property and maintaining its biological and socio-
economic advantages for the beneficial owners of the trust, the government and people of Belize.
While private land at Turneffe Atoll will not be directly affected, the land trust will effectively prohibit
development on a large portion of the atoll. The land acquisition ensures protection of the atoll’s fragile
mangroves and wetlands including essential habitats for fish, birds and other wildlife, including the
endangered West Indian Manatee and the threatened American Crocodile.
Established in 2002, TAT has advocated for the protection and sustainable management of Turneffe
Atoll and similar coastal marine habitats. As TAT Executive Director Alex Anderson notes, “The
establishment of a land trust has been a TAT goal for more than a decade.”
In announcing this historic agreement, Hayes commended the efforts of Belizean Ministers Omar
Figueroa and Hugo Patt for their “wisdom and foresight” in moving this project forward, noting, “This
effort would not have been possible without their leadership.”
Approximately 30 miles off the mainland, Turneffe Atoll is the largest and most biologically diverse
atoll in the Caribbean. Its environmental assets provide major economic benefits for Belize, estimated at
more than $500 million annually. Benefits for Belize include the atoll’s protection of Central Belize,
including Belize City, from storm damage, its blue carbon value, its contribution as a major commercial
fishery and its substantial tourism value.
Funds for the project were raised by Turneffe Atoll Trust through donations from individuals,
foundations and Turneffe Flats Resort.