Federal funds granted for coral reef research

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By The Associated Press endi.com Eduardo Bhatia, executive director of the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration (PRFAA), informed today that with these funds the local government can protect the coral reefs that surround the Island. “This funding assignment is notable, because the budget proposed by the President of the United States suggested the elimination of coral reef funding of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for Puerto Rico, Florida, Hawaii and the Pacific territories”, said Bhatia in a press release. He indicated that the amount of money granted is the same as last year. Previously, these funds have been used to study the management of protected marine areas –like in Culebra-, identify resources in Isla de Mona’s coast and evaluate the health and status of reefs in Puerto Rico. Also, the money has been used to map coral reefs in the west coast of the Island, documenting fishing populations and studying the genetics of endangered coral species.