5 May 2014

Some reservations over New Caledonia marine park

7:35 am on 5 May 2014

An environmental organisation in New Caledonia says the territory's huge new marine park is a good idea but it has to be fully protected.

The Natural Park of the Coral Sea will cover 1.3 million square kilometres and is reportedly the world's largest wilderness preserve, on land or at sea.

It will include large areas of coral reefs, 25 species of marine mammals, 48 shark species, 19 species of nesting birds and five species of turtles.

The president of the Association for the Protection of Nature in New Caledonia, Jean-Louis d'Auzon, says it supports such a reserve between the territory and Australia.

"But there is a point for which we don't agree. It could be possible in this reserve to have mining and [other] exploitation. So we don't agree for that. If it is a reserve it must be protected."

Jean-Louis d'Auzon.