Cooks call for massive conservation effort

The Cook Islands Prime Minister, Henry Puna, has called for marine protection and conservation on a mass scale.

At the Eye on the Earth environment summit in Abu Dhabi, Mr Puna spoke of his government's commitment to establishing a one million square kilometre marine park within the Cook Islands exclusive economic zone.

And he challenged other delegates to take responsibility as the stewards of the world's oceans.

That challenge drew an immediate response, with Jack Dangermond, the founder and president of Environmental Systems Research Institute, pledging to help build a database for the Cook Islands marine park.

The company's directors say they are proud to be able to make a commitment to the protection of a very special part of the planet, and to provide the technical support.

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