The first Solomon Island community to request assistance from OceansWatch to help them manage their marine resources has had their marine protected area recognized by the Rennell Bellona Provincial Government.

OceansWatch Solomon Island's director Willie Sau Kaitu'u reports: "The Rennell Bellona provincial Executive agreed in their meeting today, to recognize the Marine Protected Area on Rennell Island."

OceansWatch International commends their work, saying this was a result of a lot of hardwork by Willie, Derek Pongi and others on Rennell, especially Joseph and the Reef Guardians.

Marine protected areas, like any protected area, are regions in which human activity has been placed under some restrictions in the interest of conserving the natural environment, its surrounding waters and the occupant ecosystems.

Marine protected areas' boundaries will include some area of ocean, even if it is only a small fraction of the total area of the Island.

There are variations in terms of how the area will be protected. It includes different limitations on development, fishing practices, fishing seasons and catch limits, moorings, bans on removing or disrupting marine life of any kind.