Monday, December 06, 2010

Call to gazette Tun Mustapha marine park

KOTA KINABALU: A proposed one million hectare marine park in northern Sabah should be gazetted as soon as possible to pave the way for its protection and conservation.

Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili said recent studies have shown that the Tun Mustapha Marine Park was ecologically more diverse than Australia’s famed Great Barrier Reef or the Carribean.

“It has been seven years since the intention to set up the park was announced.

“Any further delay will lead to the sensitive areas being further degraded,” he said, adding that gazetting the marine park would ensure sustainable development of the marine resources there.

The proposed marine park covers the coastal areas of Kudat, Kota Marudu and Pitas districts including 50 islands. It has also been identified by experts as a Priority Conservation Area.

When gazetted, the Tun Mustapha Marine Park would become the largest marine conservation area in Malaysia. An estimated 80,000 people live within its vicinity and depend on fishery resources for their livelihood.

The marine park encompasses Marudu Bay and Universiti Putra Malaysia’s (UPM) researchers recently completed a study to find ways to sustainably develop the area.

Continue reading at: Call to gazette Tun Mustapha marine park

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