During the last decade, the Cape Verde Government has shown strong commitment and made encouraging efforts to strengthen the legislative and institutional setup to protect the environment, including nature and biodiversity conservation. In 2004, a second National Environmental Action Plan (PANA II) was adopted. The plan has a comprehensive and ambitious approach, and includes an important component of environmental decentralization to the country’s municipalities. Moreover,
However, there is still a lack of information, technical expertise and financial resources, especially at the local level and within civil society, regarding environmental management and nature conservation. Therefore, there is a strong need to increase awareness and build capacity for sustainable resource management and environmental protection at all levels, in particular as regards protecting marine and coastal biodiversity.
Today, the remaining habitats and their flora and fauna are continuously under pressure from human activities and introduced species, resulting in overgrazing, over-fishing, improper land use, and the destruction of the few remaining woodlands. Environmental degradation is also escalating due to poor land use planning combined with rapid economic development (in particular tourism and urban sprawl), poverty and poor environmental management. Sand mining, sewage, pesticide run off, and over-exploitation of several marine species, birds and reptiles (including their eggs) for consumption and local medicines all threaten the delicate ecology of
Below follows short status reports for some of the main species groups.
Reptiles: Five different species of Sea Turtles can be found in
Fish and corals: Large pelagic fish, including sharks and tuna, are abundant, and coral communities can be found in almost all
Plants: Some 92 species of plants are endemic to these islands, of which at least one is endangered – an understory tree known as Marmulan (Sideroxylon mermulana). The endangered Dragon’s Blood Tree (Dracaena draco) can also be found in the Archipelago. It is estimated that more than 50% of the Capeverdean flora has been introduced.
The World Wide Fund for Nature