As a Large Ocean Nation, as well as Small Island State, Palau's President has agreed to protect 80% of its waters. The Palau government has also committed to grow various revenues to offset and economically benefit from the creation of this massive no-take marine reserve.
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There are instances where tourism can support conservation efforts. Environmental certification, if appropriately designed for the Pacific region, could direct tourism development in the right direction. The proposed Blue Star environmental tourism certification is being developed with the Pacific in mind.
Large scale marine protected areas must avoid inequitable costs on developing States. In some contexts, this can be achieved through careful design and complementarity with fisheries management regimes to avoid significant reductions in fisheries revenue or impacts on local community livelihoods and food security, and financial investments to mitigate management costs. In other circumstances, rights based management frameworks can be utilised to share costs through the transferral of fishing effort with minimal impact on revenue.
To improve the long term conservation of biodiversity in Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) regions by providing better, more relevant and more accessible information for protected areas management, setting up a network of regional BIOPAMA observatories, developing a Reference Information System to host and facilitate the exchange of data, and to provide the associated capacity building to contribute to, and effectively use, these tools.
Established a community-based resource management programme for an isolated fishing community on Kia Island in the Northern Fiji sitting on the Great Sea Reef (GSR) of local, regional and global significance being the third largest reef system in the world. Having perceived the current state of poor management of the marine protected area by the people of Macuata province, Reef Rangers was developed to increase education and awareness on Kia and later to communities beyond.
The money that countries spend to manage and maintain protected areas should not be considered an “expenditure” but an “investment.” This is not only a semantical issue, but also a conceptual and theoretical one. In general, countries, citizens, press, and ministers of finance praise the investment, but not the expenditure. For instance, in the case of the guards that work for these areas, should those salaries be considered as a general expenditure, or as an investment? If we do not pay for the guards, can we keep a protected area safe?
WCS will highlight experiences with PA-based enterprises working with local communities in Bolivia and Guatemala to help promote sustainable livelihoods and improve governance conditions. In Bolivia, WCS works in a suite of Protected Areas and indigenous territories to develop community-based natural resource management enterprises, ranging from chocolate cultivation to caiman harvesting and processing of skins. In Guatemala, WCS works with a community to sustainably harvest an understory palm frond known as xate.