A Massive New Marine Protected Area Network in Gabon
By John Robinson
The first day of the IUCN 2014 World Parks Congress marked a significant win for the oceans.
The President Ali Bongo Ondimba of Gabon announced the decision to create a new marine protected area network of ten marine parks covering more than 18,000 square miles (over 46,000 square kilometres). The network – encompassing about 23 percent of Gabon’s territorial waters and EEZ (Exclusive Economic Zone) – will safeguard whales, sea turtles, and other marine species inhabiting the nation’s coastal and offshore ecosystems.
As the President noted in his speech, this puts Gabon “near the 20 to 30 percent that marine biologists tell us is needed to maintain biodiversity and restore depleted areas outside parks.” This is a massive increase from the 1 percent of marine area currently protected by Gabon.
President Ali Bongo Ondimba added that the new protected area will include a 27,000 square kilometer expansion of —> Read More Here