US - President Obama has created the world’s largest marine protected area in the Pacific Ocean. By proclamation, the President is expanding the current Pacific Remote Islands National Marine Monument by more than six times its original size, from nearly 87,000 square miles to more than 490,000.
The area, which includes three out of the five sites originally under consideration for expansion – Johnston Atoll, Wake Atoll and Jarvis Island, will now be off-limits to activities such as commercial fishing and energy exploration.
Oceana applauds the announcement and released the following statement from its vice president for US oceans, Jacqueline Savitz: “With this announcement, President Obama is turning words into action for ocean conservation, and fulfilling a promise made at the ‘Our Ocean’ conference in June.
"The expansion of this marine monument is a clear signal that the Obama administration sees the necessity in protecting our oceans, which cover the other 70 per cent of our planet.
"This unprecedented protection is an important step to rebuilding fishery abundance in the Pacific Ocean, which will in turn help to feed the world’s growing population.
"We hope the Obama administration will also stay true to its commitment to address seafood fraud and illegal fishing in the months ahead.”
TheFishSite News Desk