Major nations failed to reach agreement on Thursday to set up huge marine protected areas off Antarctica under a plan to step up conservation of creatures such as whales and penguins around the frozen continent.
The 25-member Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) agreed, however, to hold a special session in Germany in July 2013 to try to break the deadlock after the October 8-November 1 meeting in Hobart, Australia.
The Australian Government announced today the proposed establishment of the world's largest marine protected area in the waters of the Coral Sea that fall within Australia's Exclusive Economic Zone.
Environment Minister Tony Burke said the Coral Sea was recognised across the world as a marine region of significance for its unique biodiversity. And in Australian waters the environment is in near pristine condition.
The proposed Coral Sea Commonwealth Marine Reserve covers approximately 989,842 square kilometres - an area of ocean more than half the size of Queensland.
ScienceDaily® (Aug. 30, 2011) - Preserving just 4 percent of the ocean could protect crucial habitat for the vast majority of marine mammal species, from sea otters to blue whales, according to researchers at Stanford University and the National Autonomous University of Mexico. Their findings were published in the Aug. 16 edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.