GOVERNMENT'S commitment to expand marine managed areas, which was made known at the United Nations World Ocean Conference (UNWOC) in New York, is not enough, says Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) director Dr Sangeeta Mangubhai.
Dr Mangubhai said making a statement and commitment was the easy part but there was still a lot of work to do.
"The hard work is implementing actions effectively and living up the partnerships that have formed around UNWOC," she said.
Dr Mangubhai said there had been hours of dialogue, meetings and workshops to prepare and give inputs.
"Yes, we have not always agreed and there has been lively debate, but that is what is needed if we are to truly tackle the challenges of wisely using and managing our ocean," she said.
"Together, government and their non-government partners identified and drafted 17 voluntary commitments towards the protection and sustainable management of our ocean.
"This covers a wide diversity of topics from marine-managed areas, including locally-managed marine areas, integrated coastal management, coastal fisheries, gender and fisheries, grouper spawning aggregations, turtles, sharks, and whales."
Dr Mangubhai also confirmed that WCS had signed up to nine national and regional voluntary commitments.
While addressing Pacific Island leaders at the UNWOC in New York on Wednesday, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said it was absolutely imperative for all Pacific leaders that the Paris Agreement was fully implemented.
"It is also imperative that we try to persuade the rest of the world to embrace even more ambitious action in the years to come because we all know that even the current national contributions to the Paris Agreement are not enough to save us," he said.
Source: Fiji Times online