Environment and development
in coastal regions and in small islands
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The Republic of Vanuatu

A report on the ‘Evolution of Village-based Marine Resource Management in Vanuatu Between 1993 and 2001’ was submitted to CSI in mid-2002. It describes how simple measures such as: advice on how limiting trochus (marine snail) harvesting to some days a year will conserve stocks and increase profits; a traveling theatre production on the plight of sea-turtles; and information on, and justification of, marine conservation laws; has led to the introduction, and adherence to, many marine resource management measures.

The ‘Local and Indigenous Knowledge Systems’ LINKS project to integrate indigenous knowledge into development and conservation, was initiated in 2002. As part of this project a representative of the Vanuatu Kaljoral Senta attended the Pacific Science Congress in Bangkok, Thailand in March 2003, and presented a paper on ‘Community-Based Marine Resource Management in Vanuatu: Past, Present and Future’. 

The Small Islands Voice project started in January 2002. Its goals are to overcome the isolation of small islands by providing their citizens, including young people, with opportunities to voice their opinions on environmental and development issues in a variety of ways: radio, television, print and Internet-based debate. In this way the general public will be able to contribute to the 10-year review of the ‘Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Islands Developing States’ adopted in Barbados in 1994; and play a more effective role in decision-making in their islands. Vanuatu is one of the island territories involved in the project through Small Islands Voice Internet-based global forum; correspondents from Vanuatu contributed to papers discussing foreign investment ‘Saving Island Identity’ and development in small islands ‘Balancing Development and Environment’ and ‘Controlling Development’.


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