7 Nov 2005

US Coral Reef Task Force set to wrap up meeting in Palau

7:04 am on 7 November 2005

The US Coral Reef Task Force wraps up its meeting in Palau today after hearing views from around the Pacific on ways to strengthen efforts at conservation.

The Palau national congress delegate, Noah Idechong, has spoken of his country's marine conservation efforts as a model for the region.

Delegates from Pohnpei and Yap have made presentations on putting the traditional elements of marine conservation into a modern framework.

Establishing protected areas and the effects of climate change on reefs in American Samoa have also been on the agenda.

The US Coral Reef task force aims to produce a comprehensive digital map of all shallow coral reefs in US affiliated Pacific Islands.

More than 4-thousand square kilometres have already been mapped.

The task force aims to reduce the adverse impacts of the collection of, and trade in, coral reef animals, and to encourage more responsible trade.

The body is tasked with turning 20 per cent of all US coral reefs into marine reserves by 2010.