All CEP Technical Reports
CEP Technical Report No. 36 1996: Status of Protected
Area Systems in the Wider Caribbean Region
Area 193 sq. km.
Protected Areas (PAs)
|PAs with Marine or Coastal Zones||Extension|
|World Heritage Sites||0||0||0|
Policy and Legislation
Aruba obtained the status of an autonomous country within the Kingdom of the Netherlands on 1 January 1986. Existing Antillean laws and regulations remain in force, but since this date Aruba has been responsible for its own legislation.
The collection of corals and of different species of conch (Strombus spp.) and the catching of sea turtles is banned. However, the degree of enforcement is uncertain and permits for collection are available (UNEP/IUCN 1988). Some laws to protect the environment are currently being introduced and, since April 1992 government officials have been working on a general policy plan for the conservation of nature (Department of Foreign Affairs, pers. comm., 1992).
Conventions & Treaties
Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (World Heritage, 1972)
Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region (Cartagena Convention, 1983)
Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD, 1992)
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES, 1973)
Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (Migratory Species, 1972)
Convention on Wetlands of International Importance especially as Waterfowl Habitat (Ramsar, 1971)
Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife in the Wider Caribbean (SPAW, 1990)
United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOS, 1982)
Programmes & Associations
Caribbean Conservation Association (CCA, 1967)
Caribbean Environment Programme (CEP, 1981) and its Specially Protected Areas & Wildlife Programme (SPAW, 1990)
UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB, 1972)
FAO Tropical Forestry Action Plan (TFAP, 1985)
Since 1963 administration and management of protected areas was the responsibility of a non-governmental organisation (NGO), the Netherlands Antilles National Parks Foundation (Stichting Nationale Parken Nederlandse Antillean, STINAPA). Since 1983 Aruba has had an independent STINAPA, now officially known as FANAPA (Aruban Foundation for Nature and Parks). The aim of the organisation is to promote nature conservation through acquisition of land, establishment of parks, and by education. Recently a much more extreme environmental and conservationist association, STIMARUBA, has been established (Department of Foreign Affairs, pers. comm., 1992).
Aruba lies on the continental shelf of South America, less than 50 km from the Peninsula de Paraguand on the Venezuelan mainland. It is a small island, less than 32 km in length. Most of the island is relatively hilly, with the steepest slopes being on the north coast and the highest elevation reaching some 188 m. The long south-west coast has a partly emerged reef, with tiny islands along its length, which is separated from the main island by a long narrow lagoon.
Although corals are extensive in distribution the reefs are not highly developed, with the exception of a small area on the south-east point (ECNAMP 1980, UNEP/IUCN 1988). Much of the vegetation has been modified by Man, especially in the south-western half of the island. Davis et al (1986) describe the vegetation as xerophytic, consisting of thorny scrub and cacti. The reef islands off the south-west coast have some important mangrove communities and represent an important area for breeding tern populations (Scott and Carbonell 1986).
Aruba's only protected area is the Hetspaans Lagoen Ramsar Site. No information concerning management activities was available for review.
Directorate for Housing, Physical Development and Environment, Schuberstr.4, Oranjestad. Telephone: (297-8) 32345 Fax: (297-8) 32342
Aruban Foundation for Nature and Parks, PO Box 4014.
STIMARUBA, c/o Spaanslagoenweg 33b.
Davis, S.D., Droop, S.J.M., Gregerson, P., Henson, L., Leon, C.J., Lamlein Villa-Lobos, J., Synge, H., and Zantovska, J. (1986) Plants in danger: What do we know? IUCN, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK.
ECNAMP (1980) Aruba preliminary data atlas. Survey of conservation priorities in the Lesser Antilles. Eastern Caribbean Natural Areas Management Programme. 18 pp.
Hunter, B. (Ed.) (1991) The Statesman's Yearbook 1991/1992. The MacMillan Press Ltd, London. 1692 pp.
IUCN (1987) Directory of wetlands of international importance. IUCN, Cambridge, UK.
Scott, D.A. and Carbonell, M. (1986). Directory of Neotropical wetlands. IUCN, Cambridge and International Wildfowl and Wetlands Research Bureau, Slimbridge. 684 pp.
UNEP/IUCN (1988) Coral Reefs of the World. Volume 1: Atlantic and Eastern Pacific. UNEP Regional Seas Directories and Bibliographies. IUCN, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK/UNEP, Nairobi Kenya. 373 pp.
ANNEX I: ARUBAN PROTECTED AREAS LIST
Name of area
IUCN & National Mngmnt. CategoriesPresence of Marine or Coastal ZonesArea
ha Year Established Hetspaans LagoenIIRYES701980
R = Reserve
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