Papua New Guinea gets its largest-ever conservation area
However, some stakeholders are still concerned about mining, which is not specifically excluded from Managalas Conservation Area’s management plan.
“The decision from the National Executive Council on the Conservation Area states that activities like logging and large scale agriculture is to be excluded from the conservation area. However, it does not mention mining, so that is a concern to us … and the people of Managalas,” said Kenn Mondial of Partners with Melanesians (PwM), a non-profit that has been supporting establishment of Managalas Conservation Area.
While declaration of Papua New Guinea’s newest and biggest conservation area represents a huge step forward in the protection of the region’s forests, much still needs to be done to get Managalas up and running. Next steps include government endorsement of the management committee, which is comprised of tribal leaders, community-based organizations, churches and local governments, and supported by outside organizations like RFN and PwM. After this is done, the committee will finalize the management plan for the area and rangers will be deployed to monitor its implementation in the Conservation Area’s different zones.