The Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System was on the UNESCO World Heritage Center List of World Heritage in Danger since 2009; however, last month Belize was finally removed. Today, a ceremony was held honoring those who helped to make this possible. Deputy Prime Minister, Patrick Faber, spoke about the journey to getting Belize off the list.
Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber: We had to do a great deal over time and ofcourse it is some of the measures that we did put in place that caused us to be in a position to get off. We can speak of course of the ban on offshore oil exploration, we can speak again of the regulations, the new regulations on mangrove in this country and then other things like what landed us on the list of sites in danger in the first place, the giving out of land in the reserved areas of country and then private entities then disregarding regulations, mangrove cutting and all of that and so it is a number of issues but when those issues were brought to the attention of government at the time when we were placed on the list of site in danger there were many other things subsequent to that because at that time some of the dangers were not very very plain to see.
The decision came after Belize’s report was tabled and the matter was heard by the World Heritage Committee in Bahrain last month.