Sunday, 13 July 2008

Websites opened for marine protected areas - Fiji Times Online

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

THE only international organisation working exclusively mainly to protect coral reefs from the effects of global climate change has taken a bold step to promote local culture and richness.

The Coral Reef Alliance has launched two community-driven tourist websites for marine protected areas in Fiji.

The dedicated websites are for Namena Marine Reserve situated at Kubulau in Bua and the Waitabu Marine Park on Taveuni in the biodiversity waters of Fiji.

The websites: and was launched in America last Friday.

It features details such as visitor information, local community profiles and facts about park operations, providing an essential resource for tourists, conservationists, members of the local government and communities, and non-government organisations.

Made possible by the generous support of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the two websites were designed with extensive participation by local community members as a means of sharing traditional cultural knowledge with potential visitors and engaging the local population in the conservation of its precious natural resources.

Waitabu Village chief Tui Nasau is keen on promoting their natural resources and share the warm nature of the locals.

"In village life, we help each other and work together. Everything is done as a community. We would like to share our marine park with more visitors for it to become a truly self-sustaining operation," said the chief.

Known to be one of the best scuba diving spots in Fiji, the roughly 40-square-mile Namena Marine Reserve is home to many endemic and rare species. Established in 1997, the reserve stretches between Viti Levu and Vanua Levu.

Waitabu Marine Park is a vibrant reef set aside for the benefit of tourism and education.

Websites opened for marine protected areas - Fiji Times Online

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