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Thursday, July 25, 2024

Ca Mau establishes 27,000-hectare marine protected area

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The Mekong Delta province of Ca Mau has approved the establishment of a 27,000-hectare marine protected area (MPA), encompassing the waters around Hon Khoai, Hon Chuoi, and Hon Da Bac islands.

The MPA aims to safeguard marine resources and endangered species, featuring 18,000 hectares of functional sub-zones and a 9,000-hectare buffer zone. These sub-zones include 3,000 hectares of strictly protected area, 11,230 hectares for ecological restoration, and 3,970 hectares for services and administration.

Key objectives of the MPA include protecting critical ecosystems, such as the coral reefs around Hon Chuoi and Hon Hang islands, and preserving the biodiversity and natural landscapes of the islands for research, education, and ecotourism.

Restoration efforts will help prevent coral reef degradation around Hon Chuoi and Hon Hang islands. The province will focus on protecting and restoring populations of endemic and rare species, including the golden-tailed gecko and Hon Khoai squirrel (Callosciurus honkhoaiensis). Measures will also be implemented to mitigate environmental degradation and enhance ecosystem resilience to climate change.

In addition to environmental protection, Ca Mau will invest in infrastructure and community development projects. The Fisheries Inspection Sub-department under the Ca Mau Department of Agriculture and Rural Development will initially oversee the MPA. Long-term management will transition to a formal Management Board once the MPA generates sufficient revenue.

Ca Mau, with a fishing ground of approximately 80,000 square kilometers, faces challenges from overfishing and environmental degradation. The MPA is expected to support scientific research, education, and ecotourism, while also contributing to national defense and the sovereignty of Vietnam’s maritime territories.

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