Adaptation to climate change in Junquillal
- Development and implementation of a temperature monitoring protocol. Electronic data loggers have been buried in the sand at strategic points to determine the range of incubation temperatures along the 6 km stretch of beach. One finding is that the shade of coastal vegetation on exposed beach areas reduces incubation temperature by 2-3 °C. The team is finalizing a temperature-monitoring manual, tailored to the needs of climate change adaptation, for wide distribution to other marine turtle conservation projects.
- Nest relocation and restoration of coastal vegetation to cool down nesting conditions, securing successful development and balanced sex ratios. The goal is that at least 25% of nests produce hatchlings of both sexes under otherwise lethal conditions. The areas for reforestation along the beach and the suitable native species have been identified. A tree nursery was established and some 1,500 tree saplings planted by community members and visitors of all ages in April 2009. The team will quantify the tons of CO2 captured by the reforestation scheme to illustrate a community contribution to the mitigation of greenhouse gases. The operation of the egg hatchery for high-risk nests, includes the control of temperature through shading and irrigation and is currently maximizing hatching success to at least 75%.
- Design and implementation of setback policies into coastal development plans of the province, to allow nesting beaches to shift backwards as sea level rises. This work begun with the establishment of a high-resolution topographic profile of the coast in Junquillal, to illustrate areas flooded under various sea level rise scenarios. The flooding simulation will be socialized with the community, developers and representatives from the provincial government for the joint design of setback policies that maintain specific coastal stretches free of buildings, roads and other infrastructure.
- Adaptation to climate change integrated into community livelihood improvement plan through a participatory process. Over the last two years, the University of Costa Rica (UCR) and other partners have systematized the history of Junquillal and its social and economic profile, including an analysis of local identity as influenced by marine turtle conservation. WWF and UCR are facilitating the participatory preparation of the community livelihood improvement plan, which is to include adaptation thinking as an integral component of water management, land tenure and development, tourism and agriculture, among other aspects.
- Strenghtening local and national adaptation capacity to climate change