Sustainable Fisheries & Coastal zoning in Curaçao

In February 2015, the Government of Curaçao and the Waitt Institute signed a memorandum of understanding to launch Blue Halo Curaçao (BHC), a comprehensive ocean and coastal management initiative with a goal of achieving the sustainable management of Curaçao’s ocean and coastal waters. BHC seeks to develop a Curaçao Sustainable Ocean Policy that will ensure long-term health of Curaçao’s waters through ocean zoning, protected areas, and fisheries reforms. This Report is intended to provide a strong legal and institutional foundation for Blue Halo Curaçao by exploring how existing legal authorities contribute to ocean management in Curaçao and how they can be used to support the Curaçao Sustainable Ocean Policy. 

A wide range of laws and policies govern or could affect the use of the ocean in Curaçao. While some laws have been updated to reflect changes occurring after Curaçao became a country in 2010, many key laws are much older and yet others exist only in draft. After providing an introduction to Curaçao’s legal system, this Report surveys the applicable laws, regulations, and policies that are most relevant to ocean policy, with a particular focus on fisheries and laws relevant to coastal zoning. The Report divides the laws into the following broad categories: 

 Fisheries; 

 Protected Areas Authority; 

 Planning and Land Use; 

 Maritime and Shipping; 

 Protection of Fauna and Flora; 

 Pollution and Dumping; and 

 Offshore Industry: Oil, Gas, Energy, and Mining.

Within each of these areas, the report identifies key laws and institutions and discusses how these institutions operate as expressed by the law and, where known, in practice. Many of these authorities and institutions are listed in Table 1. The Report characterizes each relevant legal authority for its content and implementation. 

Recommended Approach 

Based on the analysis and characterization of the relevant Curaçao legal and institutional framework, the authors in Chapter 10 identify policy pathways that could be used to achieve a Curaçao Sustainable Ocean Policy by way of existing and new laws, decrees, and management tools. These pathways are intended to be combined with socioeconomic and scientific assessments undertaken by other partners in the BHC Initiative to provide a basis for determining an environmentally, economically, and socially sound approach to development and implementation of the Curaçao Sustainable Ocean Policy.



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