Buccoo Reef Trust

Vision:

A world in which the marine environment of tropical islands is conserved for the benefit of future generations while maximizing present opportunities for sustainable livelihoods that enhance the quality of human life.

Mission:

To actively work in the Caribbean to develop capacity in the area of tropical marine sciences that enables people to protect the marine environment while ensuring sustainable use of the region’s aquatic resources.

The Buccoo Reef Trust (BRT) is a non-profit company which has been registered and operating in Trinidad and Tobago since July 30, 1999. It was specifically created to assist the government and communities in addressing the threats facing Tobago’s marine environment and to explore opportunities for the sustainable development of marine tourism, fishing and aquaculture in the Southern Caribbean region. Its aim is to build and operate a Tobago Marine Research Centre as an internationally recognised institution of research and education on tropical reef ecosystems and sustainable aquaculture.

Over its existence, the BRT has successfully implemented education, research and coastal zone management programmes throughout Tobago. It seeks to build intellectual and technical capacity in marine sciences that will enable governments, resource managers and stakeholder and the general public to make informed decisions on how best to interact with and use the region’s marine resources.

History
During Gerald McFarlane’s tenure in the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) as Secretary for Marine Affairs he commissioned the Institute for Marine Affairs (IMA) to study the coral reefs around Tobago and to develop a management plan for the Buccoo Reef. In 1994, he led a THA delegation to Maine, USA, to look at aquaculture and marine laboratory facilities, which, with the meeting of Gerald and Rich Langton, resulted directly in the establishment of the Buccoo Reef Trust.

Following a presentation by Owen Day at the Trinidad & Tobago High Commission in London, UK, to an audience of businessmen and diplomats, Lawrence Duprey pledged the support of CL Financial to the establishment of the Trust – which was named after Tobago’s most prominent coral reef.