Considerations for development of a coastal zone management program in the state of Colima, Mexico Public

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_projects/c534ft739

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  • The coastal zone is the area where the land, sea, air meet. It has a unique combination of characteristics which favor human development, trade and industry. "Coastal climates are more moderate and stable than those of the interior of the continents, and are usually associated with sufficient rainfall to sustain agriculture. Lagoons, estuaries, and bays provide sheltered nutrient rich water for many species of animals, while the coastal seas are a rich repository of resources, both living and non-living. The large proportion of marine life is said to be found in the shallow coastal waters over the continental shelves. At the present 90% of the world's fish supply comes from the major coastal upwelling areas. Placer and weathering deposits of heavy metals are common near coasts, both onshore and offshore. For several decades coastal areas have supported continuous large-scale extraction of construction materials, sand, gravel and carbonates (shells)" (Chacko, 1973). In a world critically dependent upon energy, it is estimated that 68% of the world's ultimate recoverable hydrocarbon resources lie under the coastal waters of 200m depth or less (United Nations, 1973). Water transport along the coast is the cheapest form of transport for bulk materials. In addition the modern power stations needed to provide energy require vast quantities of water. Final ly, the coastal area is a major source of human benefit in terms of recreation, tourism and general well being. The complexity of interaction between social, industrial and ecological requirements is unique. For the reasons mentioned above there is a need to manage the coastal areas in order avoid conflicts between uses and to protect the environment from irreversible deterioration. Many nations already have some kind of coastal zone management program or regulations to try to deal with different aspects of protection and development of the coast. In Mexico over the last five years a strong concern has developed for protection of the natural resources in general but no specific coastal zone management legislation or program has been developed.
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