Located on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, Akumal, or "place of the turtles," is a getaway for travelers who venture beyond the high-rise hotels of bustling Cancun. Home to Green, Loggerhead, and Hawksbill sea turtles, Akumal is a popular destination for organized snorkeling tours. However, with no marine protection in place, the reefs of Akumal are suffering.
By contrast, coral reefs in Cozumel, a CORAL field site  with marine protected status and active management by CORAL and its partners, is thriving. CORAL builds grassroots partnerships among the local community members, government leaders, marine recreation operators, and other organizations to raise awareness about environmental concerns and educate tourists and locals alike in reef stewardship and effective management of the marine protected area. The differences between the well-managed marine protected area in Cozumel and the unmanaged reef in Akumal are clear indications that the efforts of CORAL and its partners are working.
Yet, while our Coral Reef Sustainable Destination (CRSD ) sites show real improvements, there are many reefs, like Akumal, in serious decline. By supporting CORAL's five-year plan  to expand from seven CRSD sites to seventeen, you can help us save more coral reefs worldwide for future generations.
Akumal…in Decline by Drew Wohl and Sandrah Gurash of Congers, New York, recently won first place in the conservation category of the Underwater Images 2008 Video Competition.