November 27, 2010

Nusa Penida-Bali Marine Protected Area Declared

Klungkung District Commits to Conservation and Sustainable Resources Management

NUSA PENIDA, BALI, INDONESIA — November 21, 2010 — Indonesia’s Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries Fadel Muhammad and District Head of Klungkung I Wayan Candra officially launched Nusa Penida Marine Protected Area (MPA) in Penida Island, The Nature Conservancy announced today. The 20,057-hectare Nusa Penida MPA, established by Klungkung District Ordinance No. 12, is aimed to protect the area’s rich marine and coastal life and to support local marine tourism and fisheries. This initiative is a collaborative effort between the Klungkung District Government together with the people of Nusa Penida, the Ministry of Marine and Fisheries Affairs and The Nature Conservancy’s Indonesia Marine Program, with assistance from the USAID Coral Triangle Support Partnership.

Minister Muhammad said that the Nusa Penida MPA will contribute to the government's target of protecting 20 million hectares of coastal ecosystems and marine areas by 2020. “The establishment of MPAs in some areas in Indonesia, including Nusa Penida, is a concrete step taken by the government to implement the plan of action under the Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security,” says Fadel. The Initiative is a commitment led by the Indonesian Government along with the governments of the Philippines, Malaysia, Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.

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Indonesian Minister for Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Fadel Muhammad launches the Nusa Penida MPA
Photo © Andreas Muljadi/TNC

Candra, the District Head of Klungkung, explains that the waters around Nusa Penida have the highest marine biodiversity in Bali. “You can encounter Mola mola [oceanic sunfish], which is a rare and unique treat. They average about two meters in size and they appear between July and September. Mola mola sightings are a big draw for divers from around the world, who come to Nusa Penida just for the occasion.”

According to a marine ecology study by international marine experts . Emre Turak and Gerry Allen in 2009, there are about 296 species of coral reefs and 576 species of fish in Nusa Penida,. A Conservancy-led survey found there are 1,419 hectares of coral reefs, 230 hectares of mangrove forest containing 13 different species of mangroves and 108 seagrass fields containing eight types of seagrass.

Next steps for the Nusa Penida MPA include zoning, long term planning, forming managing bodies and developing a long-term funding mechanism that can ensure local ecological and economic resources continue to enrich the region’s people and wildlife. With the support and involvement of stakeholders in Nusa Penida and the District of Klungkung, the effective and sustainable management of the Nusa Penida MPA is a real possibility.

“We appreciate the District Government of Klungkung and the people of Nusa Penida for establishing their area as a conservation zone,” says Arwandrija Rukma, the Conservancy’s Indonesia Country Representative “We will continue our successful cooperation with the community government and international development agencies to create effective MPAs that benefit people.”

Also present at the launch were the U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia, the Governor of Bali, village leaders, fishing and seaweed farming representatives, marine tourism operators, local teachers and students and representatives of local and international NGOs.

Source: The Nature Conservancy