What’s the Future Look Like for Lake Chapala?

August 25, 2008

The good news just continues to fill the hearts and souls of area residents as the yearly rains continue to fill Lake Chapala. The Lake level is up 88 centimeters or just over 34.5 inches since the start of the rainy season. Lake Chapala is currently at 66% of capacity and might rise to as high as  75% of capacity by October  31, 2008.

But, even more good news is on the horizon. Lake Chapala may well garner a place among an international group as a wetland designation by the Ramsar Convention.

This news comes from Antonio Ordorica, the CEO of the State of Jalisco’s environmental agency referred to as SEMADES. The projected date for formal acknowledgement is in early February 2009.

A bit of background on the Ramsar Convention: The treaty dates back to 1971 and the purpose is to foster sustainable use of wetlands as waterfowl habitat. The designation of sites which are considered representative, rare or unique or that are important for biological diversity is a priority, but also considers the economic, cultural, scientific, and recreational value of the sites under consideration as well.


The thrust of the Convention is to prevent the loss of wetlands through international cooperation and wise conservation. The treaty currently has 158 signatories with over 1700 sites worldwide recognized a number of which are in Mexico.


State Officials have been busy gathering the documentation needed to make the designation realty.


Some of the things that will be stressed in the application is that Lake Chapala is the largest lake in Mexico and the third largest in Latin America, its obvious value as habitat for migratory birds and unique fish species like the Charal and Pescado Blanco.


After Lake Chapala receives the official designation the Mexican government will be obligated to insure that Lake Chapala’s ecological soundness is maintained from now on.


The proper management of Lake Chapala doesn’t preclude the development of the area for tourism but only that the development be responsible. Sustainable development is the key factor.


Want to know more about the Ramsar Convention ?  Just click here www.ramsar.org










  • http://www.google.com/ Judith

    Unbelievable how well-written and infromtavie this was.

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