Protecting Mexican coastal regions and their marine ecosystems by reducing plastic waste

Project description

Title: Protecting Mexican coastal regions and their marine ecosystems by reducing plastic waste
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU)
Country: Mexico
Lead executing agency: Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation
Overall term: 2021 to 2024

The project promotes sustainable fishing methods [among local fishing cooperatives].

Context

Mexico generates 120,000 tonnes of household waste every day. Around six million tonnes of plastic waste accumulate each year, of which an estimated 100,000 tonnes end up in the sea.

The main reasons for this are poor waste management and a low recycling rate. There is a lack of funds and relevant information among public and private stakeholders at all levels. Better coordination between federal, state and local governments is needed.

In the state of Oaxaca, poor waste management threatens the Pacific coasts and marine ecosystems. Lagoons, mangroves, salt marshes, beaches, nesting areas for sea turtles and marine areas are affected. Urbanisation, population growth, tourism, fishery and landfills near rivers exacerbate the problems.

Objective

Less plastic waste enters the marine ecosystems of Mexico’s Pacific coast.

Plastic pollution threatens marine coastal and ecosystems along the Pacific coast.

Approach

The aim of the project is to reduce the amount of plastic waste entering the marine ecosystems of Mexico’s Pacific coast. The coast of the state of Oaxaca serves as a pilot region to gain experience for the national waste and marine protection policy.

The project focuses on developing solutions for an effective circular economy and improved local environmental and waste management in Oaxaca. There is potential here, particularly in the tourism and fishery industries. In this way, plastic consumption and the amount of plastics entering the marine ecosystems will be reduced.

These lessons learned are made available to other Pacific coastal regions and integrated into national strategies for waste, a circular economy and marine conservation.

Last update: January 2022

Plastic pollution in the oceans endangers the habitats of local populations.