Countries team up to protect the world's coral reefs
Protecting the world's coral reefs will be the focus when marine area managers meet up in Cairns this week for the 27th annual general meeting of the International Coral Reef Initiative.
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, on behalf of the Australian Government, is hosting the initiative over the next two years in partnership with the Belize Government.
Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Chairman Dr Russell Reichelt said the meeting provides a valuable opportunity for countries with extensive coral reefs to share an understanding of pressures on these systems, and options for reducing those threats.
"Australia is internationally recognised as a world leader in marine conservation, largely due to the strong management and protection measures in place in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park," he said.
"Hosting the International Coral Reef Initiative enables us to showcase Australia’s management initiatives in coral reef management and to share our experiences."
Belize Fisheries Administrator and ICRI Co-Chair Beverly Wade said the meeting would help emphasise the importance of protecting coral reefs around the world.
"We all have a role to play in ensuring these places of natural beauty are maintained for future generations to enjoy," she said.
"This meeting allows coral reef managers from around the world to provide valuable insights based on their experience."
The International Coral Reef Initiative involves governments, international organisations and non-government organisations who are striving to raise awareness of the importance of coral reefs and threats to their future.
Over the four-day meeting, more than 50 participants from 20 countries will discuss topics ranging from lionfish invasion in the Caribbean to a network of Marine Protected Areas in East Asia, as well as reef monitoring worldwide.
They will also have an opportunity to see GBRMPA's Reef Guardian stewardship program in action by
visiting participants, such as a local school, that undertake environmental activities.
International expert Professor Marc Hockings will conduct a workshop on effective marine protected area management during the meeting.
Name: GBRMPA Media
Contact: 4750 0846
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