15 Oct 2013

Solomons' marine biodiversity protected under new agreement

10:59 am on 15 October 2013

The marine programme manager for the World Wildlife Fund in Solomon Islands says new marine protection agreements will safeguard more than just the fisheries.

Four communities in Western Province have been working for a decade to protect their marine resources after realising that fish were smaller and scarcer.

Saeraghi, Sepo Islands, Koquvalata and Nusatuva are the first places in the country to apply for registration of their Marine Protected Areas under the new Protected Areas Act.

WWF's Shannon Seeto says the areas concerned are of high coral cover and diversity.

"There's numerous issues here with regards to the marine environment and like I said, you know, fisheries is one of them but there's also issues with regards to harvesting of corals for infrastructure. Communities use - take the corals and build jetties and so forth."

Shannon Seeto says over-fishing and certain methods of fishing have also been a problem.