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Enormous progress is being made in Cambodia’s first Marine Protected Area on the Koh Rong Archipelago, a project backed by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation.
Fauna and Flora International (FFI) has been working on marine conservation in Cambodia since 2010, initiating a government request to help establish the country’s first marine protected area, known in Cambodia as a Marine Fisheries Management Area (MFMA), against a threat of overfishing.
In June 2016, the site was formally designated and now supports sustainable fishing, biodiversity conservation and tourism.
Over the years, various actions have been achieved, including an inventory of the presence of plastic, the creation of two mangrove nurseries, and the establishment of a surveillance patrol… actions that help maintain the balance between nature and human activities.
Supported by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, the group has established strong local and national links with communities, fishers, local NGOs and government. “The strength of these relationships and the momentum created by the MFMA designation offers an unprecedented opportunity not only to make the site a model of best practice, but also to ignite significant change in the management and protection of Cambodia’s marine environment,” says FFI.
While continuing to work with community fisheries inside Cambodia’s new marine protected area, FFI is also now working with a new community fishery in the Koh Sdach Archipelago, adopting the same approach of using community-led resource management to drive better protection and management.
Photos: © Jeremy Holden & Kate West
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