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The Caribbean hotspot, encompassing most of the island groups in the Caribbean Sea, spans 4.31 million square kilometers of ocean and only 263,535 square kilometers of land area. This region is home to a vast array of biodiversity, including 60 species of corals and about 1,500 species of fish, of which nearly a quarter are found nowhere else on Earth. Today, less than 10 percent of the original vegetation remains in a pristine state on the Caribbean islands.

Threats to the Caribbean ecosystem include invasive species, a rapidly expanding human population, and most recently, tourism. The tourism industry, which is the major foreign exchange earner in the Caribbean, has the greatest impact on coastal regions. The alteration of local landscapes with non-native vegetation, golf courses, roads and tourist infrastructure has put serious pressure on remaining natural biodiversity.

Tourism & Biodiversity in the Caribbean
Tourism, the number one industry in the Caribbean, depends on the health of the region's ecosystems and the survival of its unique biodiversity. We are collaborating with the private sector, government and the conservation community to manage tourism activities and development in sensitive regions of the Caribbean, reduce the industry's ecological footprint and contribute to biodiversity conservation. more


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• Caribbean Hotspot

 Photo credits for banner image: (Zebras in Botswana) © CI, Chris Brooks