Network vital for marine conservation must have network

National, Normal


STAKEHOLDERS of marine conservation have seen the need to work collectively to develop a process for creating best practice for the marine conservation sector in the country.
This was agreed upon by a representative group of marine conservation stakeholders at a week-long meeting co-hosted by the  government, the Department of Environment and Conservation and the National Fisheries Authority.
It was agreed that PNG Centre for Locally Managed Areas (PNGCLMA) will take on the role to coordinate the collaboration and collection of information at all levels on the marine conservation community in the country.
PNGCLMA executive director Maxine Anjiga, when accepting the mandate,encouraged full support and commitment from all partners. 
“Your support is needed to make the process work and eventually develop a code of practice to inform of future actions in improving marine conservation,” she said.  
The code of best practice would be community focused and would reflect the PNG context at all levels and incorporate traditional knowledge and practice on managing marine resources.
The process would include workshops at all levels and the development of a learning network.
Volunteer and Oro Community Environmental Action Network (OCEAN) representative Adolbert Gangai said the communities involved in conservation can only be able to measure success if there is “a manual with expected results”. 
“To have a code of best practice is the best way forward,” Gangai said  adding  that from the guidelines to be developed communities can now measure their output.
Participants at the Oct 4-8 meeting at the March Girls Resort included representatives from national, provincial and local level governments, international, regional and national non-governmental organisations and community-based organisations.
A sub-committee was formed then to help PNGCLMA drive the initiative forward.