The Kadavu Provincial Council in Fiji has approved a proposal by Greenpeace to turn the Great Astrolabe Reef into a marine reserve.
The reef is among the largest in the world and surrounds the island of Kadavu which is about 90 kilometers south of the capital, Suva.
The Council chairman Ratu Josetaki Nawalowalo says it was a unanimous decision to approve the Greenpeace proposal mainly because of the benefits the reserve will bring to the area and people of Fiji.
"The marine life is still very much intact. If it could be created in to a no-take marine reserve, similar to Great Barrier Reef in Australia, it could be the source of a lot of income not only for Kadavu but also for Fiji as a whole."
Ratu Josetaki Nawalowalo says the council has also sent a resolution to the government to create a 12 mile exclusive zone to ban long line fishing.