La Parguera is a coastal town on the island of Puerto Rico that entertains over 100,000 visitors a year. Tourists come to enjoy the town’s natural attractions - diverse coral reefs that are home to threatened Acropora palmata and A. cervicornus and a bioluminescent bay. However, storm water runoff from the hillside town and streets flow directly into the tidal waters and mangroves carrying high levels of pollutants that are damaging the nears shore coral reefs and sea grass beds. This project will help implement two restoration projects identified in La Parguera’s Green Infrastructure Master Plan that addresses land-based sources of pollution. The restoration projects will include a low impact green infrastructure storm water practice as well as ecosystem restoration of historic mangroves impacted by past clearing and sediment deposition from adjacent development. The restoration projects reducing nutrients, sediment and other contaminants to near shore sea grass beds, coral reefs and fishing areas will be one of the first of its kind for Puerto Rico (PR) coastal communities. In addition, storm event monitoring will be undertaken to accurately determine the effectiveness of the implemented measures and estimate the benefit of future restoration projects.
Restoring Mangroves to Address Storm water Runoff and Improve Conditions for near shore Coral Reefs
La Parguera, Puerto Rico
Latitude/Longitude of the project site
Anticipated NOAA Trust Resource(s) to benefit from restoration
Elkhorn and Staghorn Coral (Acropora palmata and A. cervicornus), West Indian Manatee, as well as sea grass beds.
Project Start Date: January 2011
Project End Date: December 2011
Paul Sturm and Roberto Viqueira, Program Director and Guánica Restoration Coordinator
Center for Watershed Protection, Inc. (CWP)
8390 Main Street 2nd Floor
Ellicott City, Maryland 21043