The Guardian shares some welcome conservation news from a lesser-known bit of land surrounded by plenty water-based wildlife:
UK overseas territory Tristan da Cunha’s new marine protected area will be fourth largest sanctuary of its kind
A community of 250 people on one of the most remote inhabited islands on Earth has made a significant contribution to marine wildlife conservation by banning bottom-trawling fishing, deep-sea mining and other harmful activities from its waters.
The government of Tristan da Cunha, a volcanic archipelago in the south Atlantic and part of the UK’s overseas territories, has announced that almost 700,000 sq km of its waters will become a marine protected area (MPA), the fourth largest such sanctuary in the world.
In doing so, the community will safeguard the area’s wealth of wildlife, including sevengill sharks, the globally threatened yellow-nosed albatross and Atlantic petrel, rockhopper penguins and other birds that live there, and help the UK government achieve its target of protecting 30% of the world’s oceans by 2030.
The UK, which has a duty to protect wildlife found in all its territories, will be responsible for the long-term monitoring and enforcement of this vast area – three times the size of Britain and 2,400km from the nearest habitation, Saint Helena.
James Glass, Tristan da Cunha chief islander, said: “Our life on Tristan da Cunha has always been based around our relationship with the sea, and that continues today. The Tristan community is deeply committed to conservation: on land, we’ve already declared protected status for more than half our territory.
“But the sea is our vital resource, for our economy and ultimately for our long-term survival. That’s why we’re fully protecting 90% of our waters – and we’re proud that we can play a key role in preserving the health of the oceans.”..
Read the whole article here.