13 Aug 2003

Praise for huge Pacific whale sanctuary

5:27 pm on 13 August 2003

The World Wildlife Fund New Zealand has praised South Pacific countries for creating a whale sanctuary covering 28 million square kilometres.

WWF says the unprecedented network of 11 countries' zones will create the blueprint for whale conservation all over the world.

The organisation's Conservation Director, Chris Howe, says apart from environmental benefits, the Pacific countries can profit from the sanctuaries, through whalewatching.

"Everybody understood that whales had a special place in the pacific, and this demonstration by eleven countries so far to declare their EEZ's as sanctuary, just shows how strong that feeling was, and of course now that there is a very strong link to sustainable development and livelihoods as well, that's an added reason if you like to make sure that whales are protected in these countries EEZ's."