National Coral Reef Monitoring Program: Puerto Rico Infographics

The Socioeconomic Component of the National Coral Reef Monitoring Plan (NCRMP) gathers and monitors a collection of socioeconomic variables with the overall goal of tracking relevant information regarding each jurisdiction's population, social and economic structure, the impacts of society on coral reefs, and the impacts of coral management on communities.

Why Care about Coral Reefs?

Coral reef habitat off the coast of Puerto RicoCoral reef habitat off the coast of Puerto Rico [Photo Credit: NOAA]

Coral reefs provide many benefits to communities, regions, nations, and the world at large. They protect many marine species, and provide a significant source of protein to people all over the world, in addition to producing natural compounds that scientists have used to develop treatments for illness and disease. Coral reefs also act as natural barriers to coastal storms and aid in the protection of our coasts and coastal communities, as well as economically supporting local and global communities. Coral reefs and their protected beaches provide an attractive setting for travelers and locals, alike, and between the tourism industry and fisheries, coral reefs generate billions of dollars and millions of jobs in more than 100 countries around the world.

Why Care about Coral Reef Communities?

Staghorn corals off the coast of Puerto RicoStaghorn corals off the coast of Puerto Rico [Photo credit: NOAA]

People are very much a part of coral reef ecosystems, and their connections can have lasting impacts. Because of this, NCRMP gathers data from coral reef communities about:

  • Public knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions about coral reefs
  • Participation in coral reef activities, such as fishing
  • Economic and cultural value of coral reefs
  • Community well-being
  • Population changes and the distribution of people in coral reef locations

Entrance to San Juan Harbor, Puerto Rico Entrance to San Juan Harbor, Puerto Rico [Photo credit: NOAA]

Researchers collect data through periodic surveys that include standardized questions, as well as questions specific to local management needs. Data from sources such as the U.S. Census Bureau and local government agencies supplement these results. In addition to using this information for conservation and restoration efforts, scientists and communities use these data to measure social and economic conditions and document how people use and perceive coral reef resources.

Puerto Rico Trends

2022 Trends Infographic for Puerto Rico NCRMP Socio-economic Monitoring Program

Trends in NCRMP socioeconomic data from Puerto Rico’s first (2015) and second (2022) monitoring cycles are highlighted in this infographic. The trends shown are based on surveys of household residents in Puerto Rico. The infographic shows how there have been some changes in residents’ participation in coral reef activities, perceptions of resource conditions, importance of coral reefs, familiarity with threats, and support for management.

2022 Puerto Rico Survey

Connections between Coral Reefs and Coastal Communities – Puerto Rico

Results of the 2022 NCRMP socioeconomic monitoring survey of Puerto Rico residents are shown here in this infographic. Using a stratified random sampling methodology, the survey targeted individuals aged 18 and older on the islands of Puerto Rico (further stratified by coastal north, inland, and coastal south regions), Culebra, and Vieques. Surveys were conducted in person, and were offered in English and Spanish. A total of 980 surveys were completed with a response rate of 22%. All results are representative of the Puerto Rico population and strata.

2015 Puerto Rico Survey

Connections between Coral Reefs and Coastal Communities – Puerto Rico
Connections between Coral Reefs and Coastal Communities - Puerto Rico

Results of the 2014-2015 NCRMP socioeconomic monitoring of Puerto Rico are shown here in this infographic. They highlight Puerto Ricans’ perceptions, values, and level of support for Puerto Rican coral reef management alternatives

Using a stratified random sampling approach, this survey targeted individuals over the age of 18 in the following nine regions of Puerto Rico that encompass multiple municipalities: Ponce, Aguadilla, Caguas, Mayaguez, Fajardo, Guayama, Arecibo, Bayamon, and San Juan. Surveys were conducted by telephone, using the random digit dial survey method, and were available in English or Spanish. Surveying resulted in 2,496 completed interviews. Residents were sampled proportionate to the total population in each region. As a result, the results are representative of Puerto Rico.

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