The waters around French Polynesia, a French overseas territory in the South Pacific Ocean, comprise the world’s largest contiguous exclusive economic zone. At 5 million square kilometers (1.9 million square miles), the territory’s waters span an area as large as the landmass of the European Union. These vast and healthy waters are home to 21 species of sharks and an exceptional coral reef system that supports 176 coral and 1,024 fish species.
Pew’s Global Ocean Legacy team was invited by the mayors and local communities of the Austral Islands, one of the five archipelagos that make up French Polynesia, to collaborate on efforts to designate a large-scale marine reserve in their waters.
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The Pew Charitable Trusts’ Global Ocean Legacy project team in French Polynesia, led by director Jérôme Petit and officer Donatien Tanret, provides an inside look into its conservation efforts in the Austral Islands, one of the five archipelagoes that make up the French territory. Read More
Imagine using only nature as your guide the next time you travel someplace new. Thousands of years ago, this was the norm for Pacific Islanders. The stars, sun, and ocean swells—not compasses and global positioning devices—provided all the essential clues to successfully navigate long distances across the Pacific Ocean. Read More