26 October 2018

South Africa approves 20 new marine protected areas! [update]

update (24 May 2019): On 23 May 2019, 20 new or extended marine protected areas (MPAs) were declared by law in South Africa in terms of the Protected Areas Act. [src.] The proclamation comes into effect on 01 August 2019.

South Africa's Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) has confirmed that the country's cabinet has approved a network of 20 (22?) new marine protected areas (MPAs) along the South African coast. This increases MPA coverage around South Africa from 0.4% to 5%. The MPAs contribute to growing South Africa's marine eco-tourism sector by providing undisturbed natural habitat for whales, sharks, seals, dolphins, turtles and seabirds for international and domestic tourists to experience. They are also essential to maintain eco-certification of the South African deep-sea trawl fishery as the marine protected areas provide safe spaces in which fish can breed undisturbed.

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