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Coral sea nature park

At the heart of the Coral Sea, the large ocean areas of the New Caledonian Maritime Space -which represent 98% of the territory-, comprise scattered “remote islands” and an important collection of coral reefs still not well known, despite ancestral habits in some of these parts.

he geological history of this area shaped complex underwater features, often invisible from the water surface, but which contribute to the existence of unique and dynamic environments, and to ecosystems of extraordinary diversity. From the darkness of the abyss to the warm turquoise
waters of the reef, from the plankton to the great migratory fauna, a whole people of the sea, with countless forms and interactions, has developed.

Although these areas are not visited much to this day, these zones offer a variety of services to human communities (fisheries, maritime connections, etc.) and are justifiably regarded as sources of potential wealth, offering promising perspectives for activities and economic development.
The idea is to manage to combine social and economic development while preserving this exceptional environment, in a context of global human development, both a source of opportunities but also of upheavals for climate and ecosystems.

In order to provide some answers, a strategic analysis of the Maritime Space of New Caledonia was conducted. Based on a summary of knowledge gathered from numerous items of scientific evidence, it was possible to identify different management, environmental and socio-economic
challenges, often cross-cutting ones. This is how the idea of creating a Coral Sea Nature Park was born, the objective being to have a management tool capable of taking up the different challenges posed by protection and sustainable development. All the stakeholders of the relevant marine sectors were associated in the project within a consultation committee ever since its beginnings in 2012.

Protecting, enhancing, understanding and informing about life and the resources of these exceptional environments, source of wealth for New Caledonia, bringing together the conditions for a Blue economy and participating in the international momentum for the protection of the oceans: these are the major objectives of this Nature Park. This new environment management tool is a sort of parliament of the sea in which stakeholders from the relevant marine sectors will be able to discuss and set up a sustainable development project on par with the natural richness of the Maritime Space of New Caledonia.

Document date : 11/2014

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