Several local organizations have vowed to work together through signing an agreement on Wed, Feb 19 to help restore and maintain the health of our coral reefs.
The Guam Reef Restoration and Intervention Partnership (GRRIP) allows different agencies to have their personnel rehabilitate the island’s threatened coral reefs in a time of rapid climate change.
Dr. Laurie Raymundo, the co-chair of GRIPP, says that the partnership is focusing on outplanting staghorn coral that has been reared in nurseries in Piti and Merizo. She says that these corals are important fish habitats and can break up wave energy during storms.
As for this agreement, she says she is looking forward to seeing this partnership progress.
“Working relationships have been happening for quite a while between these agencies just getting together and helping each other out. Formalizing this MOU gives these agencies the weight and whatever else is needed to allow their personnel to get involved in these kinds of activities,” Dr. Raymundo said.
Although they are not formally aligned with this partnership, Raymundo adds that she has been meeting with military officials to discuss how to do more coral conservation work on their occupied coastlines.
An $856,000 National Fish and Wildlife Foundation grant was recently awarded to the UOG Marine Lab, which will help GRRIP restore reefs that were decimated during several coral bleaching episodes from 2013 to 2017.