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Opinion remains divided on PIPA opening

Orono Atoll , Phoenix Islands
Orono Atoll , Phoenix Islands. Photo: Richard Brooks/Lightening Strike Productions

By Bernadette Carreon

Kiribati’s decision to open the Phoenix Islands Protected Area to commercial fishing is their “business” says Parties to the Nauru Agreement ( PNA) CEO, Dr Sangaalofa Clark.

PIPA has been a no-take zone since 2015. When it was first proposed, revenue forgone was to be offset by a conservation contract. But that never really got off the ground and the government says the PIPA endowment fund had only raised about $10m (US$7.1 million), a fraction of what Kiribati gets through fishing.

Dr Clark says while she wouldn’t comment on the details of PIPA announcement, closing a substantial area of prime fishing ground within an EEZ in . . .

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