Lorena Velázquez was awarded the 2023 Climate Leadership Award because she is an active member of the San Quintín community who has been collaborating with Terra Peninsular, A.C. since 2019. Currently, she serves as a citizen councilor for the municipality of San Quintín from 2021 to the present, representing the community before government authorities. Her work as an environmental educator is truly remarkable, and over these years, she has strengthened ties with the community by involving them in workshops, courses, and participatory monitoring committees. These activities inspire them to become stewards and caretakers of the San Quintín Bay. Some of her most significant achievements have been:
1) Annual Organization of the International Coastal Cleanup in San Quintín: Lorena has been instrumental in coordinating the annual International Coastal Cleanup event in San Quintín, a significant effort to preserve the coastal environment.
2) Facilitating Three Best Practice Agreements with San Quintín Bay Oyster Farmers: Lorena played a pivotal role in establishing three best practice agreements with oyster farmers in San Quintín Bay. These agreements promote sustainable and responsible oyster farming practices.
3) Securing One Best Practices Agreement with the Los Volcanes Environmental Management Unit: Lorena successfully negotiated a best practices agreement with the Los Volcanes Environmental Management Unit, dedicated to the regulated and orderly hunting of black brant, contributing to wildlife conservation efforts.
4) Establishing Two Participatory Environmental Monitoring Committees: Lorena initiated the formation of two participatory environmental monitoring committees, one in the Chapala community and the other in La Chorera community, both situated in San Quintín Bay. These committees have empowered local residents to actively engage in monitoring and safeguarding the bay's ecosystems.
Undoubtedly, Lorena's tireless efforts have been crucial in fostering a deep sense of ownership within the community towards the conservation project led by Terra Peninsular. This project aims to benefit both wildlife and ecosystems while improving the quality of life for the people living in the bay.