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National and international organizations asked the current Government of Mexico to prevent the extinction of the vaquita marina, scheduled for 2021.
Civil society organizations with international presence sent a letter to the owners of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Semarnat), Josefa González Blanco and the Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development (Sader), Victor Villalobos Arámbula to ask that they not allow the vaquita marina to be extinguished during the mandate of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador .
In the letter, 54 groups such as the Center for Biological Diversity, Greenpeace, the Interamerican Association of Environmental Law, VIVA vaquita and the Mexican Center for Environmental Law, among others, requested the government to fully fund and expand the ghost network elimination program in the Upper Gulf of California .
“The vaquita is the most endangered cetacean species in the world. In 2016 and again in 2017, the vaquita lost almost 50 percent of its population . If this decline continues, it is likely to be extinguished in 2021 during the presidency of the government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador .
“Therefore, we urge you to take urgent and concrete measures to save it, and for that we are willing to help you in these efforts, “said the organizations.
others called for the development of a transparent and effective alternative fishing gear program for local fishermen; implement a strategy with the Attorney General’s Office to improve law enforcement capacity in the Upper Gulf and provide permanent coverage of all ports and open waters in the vaquita habitat , as well as for the dismantling of the networks traffic of Totoaba fish through intelligence strategies.
Likewise, they were urged to stop any plan to change the Totoaba of Appendix I of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) so that it can be legally exported, and withdraw the application for registration for any captive breeding facility of Totoaba, since these actions can only stop efforts to combat its illegal trade.
Also, continue and improve collaboration with law enforcement authorities in Totoaba transit and demand countries, including China, the United States and South Korea , in addition to maintaining a long-term monitoring program for the vaquita, from which estimate less than 15 copies remain.