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Fish Forever, a local community group, is proposing two marine reserves and one scientific reserve for the Bay of Islands. The proposal was publicly launched in May 2014, through a Community Consultation Document that invited public submissions over a six-week period. Throughout the submission period, Fish Forever publicised the proposal and engaged with as many locals and stakeholders as possible.
This report presents the results of that community consultation process.
From over 1,300 submissions received, the overwhelming impression is of active community support for the proposal – both in general, and in the specific areas proposed. This clear mandate is vital to moving the proposal process forward.
The submissions also clarify the key areas of community concern about the proposals. These concerns focus on the relationship between marine reserves and other protective measures, like fisheries and customary management regulations, which need to be taken into account in long-term conservation planning for the Bay.
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