Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park is home to the only living hard coral reef in Mexico’s entire Gulf of California. After decades of overfishing nearly destroyed the reef, the local communities worked to revive the area’s marine life, and Cabo Pulmo again became a thriving habitat. All of that success was threatened when an international company announced a massive tourism scheme next door. Spanish developer Hansa Urbana planned to develop 9,400 acres of this paradise with condos, hotels, golf courses, a marina and a private jet port. This mega-tourism project would have imperiled the coral reef’s marine life and the local communities that depend on eco-tourism for their livelihoods.
Thanks to a strong campaign waged by NRDC and our partners — and the online activism of tens of thousands of BioGems Defenders — in June 2012, Mexican President Felipe Calderón rejected the project. Today, Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park is yet again a symbol for strong conservation action.
Located at the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula, Cabo Pulmo is teeming with an astonishing diversity of wildlife, including whales, porpoises, dolphins, orcas, sharks, sea lions and five of the seven species of endangered sea turtles.
Main images provided by: Octavio Aburto/iLCP and Ralph Lee Hopkins/iLCP.