The South African Government has not been receiving much positive press recently. However, there is some really good news, and BLSA believes it’s highly commendable and worth supporting. The Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) has published a gazette listing 22 new Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). There is now a chance to show support for this process – support that is urgently needed, because there are interest groups who are upset that their little patch of the ocean is going to become an MPA, and they are fighting. How can you support?
Two ways. One is to go online and sign the petition we’ve created, together with other NGOs, in support of the MPAs:https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/support-SAs-MPAs
The other is to submit written comments to government. Please find attached a word document that explains how and why to submit comments. Click here for the document.
BirdLife South Africa is highly supportive of the MPAs. We do feel that some MPAs (such as around Robben Island, and in Algoa Bay) have not gone far enough to protect African Penguin foraging areas. We will be submitting proposals to expand the proposed boundaries of those MPAs.
Please pass on the details of the petition –we’d really like to get a lot of public support, as this will affirm to government that South Africans believe in the value of MPAs!
D, Ross M. Wanless
Seabird Division Manager
Africa Coordinator – BirdLife International Global Seabird Programme