Amigos de Sian Ka'an was founded in June of 1986 by 14 residents of Cancun, their purpose being to promote the preservation of the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve (RBSK) and its surrounding areas.
The Yucatan peninsula has a rich biodiversity that is threatened by the development of the tourist industry. In Quintana Roo in only 35 years, the population grew 1220%! There are no management plans for most of the areas and the development is affecting the ecosystems as well as the fresh water supplies. The creation of Amigos de Sian Ka'an set a precedent for being the first non-governmental, non-profit association formed in Quintana Roo.
Amigos de Sian Ka'an is working on different projects along the Yucatan peninsula focusing on integrative management strategies and to influence environmental regulation. The different programs go from mapping coastal habitats in the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve to develop integrative coral reef stress response plans, fostering the establishment of marine protected areas.
Through the different programs, they intend to identify, protect and preserve areas with high biodiversity, as well as those ones that are essential to maintain the ecological processes of the species. As well as to develop management plans for the region, to work on capacity building and environmental education with the locals.