The countries of the Wider Caribbean Region (WCR) are linked economically by their transboundary living marine resources. The region is facing a continued decline of these resources. Science is improving our understanding of the human contributions to this decline, but national policies and programmes have not kept pace with this understanding. The Caribbean Regional Seas Programme and its Cartagena Convention and Protocols provide the regional legal framework for protection and sustainable management of the WCR’s living marine and coastal resources.
An article published in 2008 by Dr. Barbara Lausche entitled "Wider Caribbean Region—A Pivotal Time to Strengthen Regional Instruments For Biodiversity Conservation" argues that governments and organizations need to significantly increase participation in this regional treaty regime to effectively address transboundary environmental challenges. A new initiative, the Global Environment Facility-supported Caribbean Large Marine Ecosystem project, will help in this effort. International policy supports strengthened regional seas programs. It is imperative for all levels and sectors to assist governments in strengthening this important treaty regime for biodiversity conservation in the Wider Caribbean Region.