After five years of compromises and failed negotiations, an enormous Ross Sea in Antarctic, home to penguins and killer whales, have become the world’s largest Marine Protected Area (MPA).
The landmark international deal to create the MPA has been brokered in Australia, when delegates of 24 countries and the European Union agreed upon it, at a meeting in Hobart, Tasmania.
Some 1.57 million sq km (600,000 sq miles) of the Southern Ocean will gain protection from fishing for 35 years.
According to the UN, 50% of ecotype-C killer whales (the smallest of the four types of Southern Hemisphere orcas), 40% of Adelie penguins and 25% of emperor penguins live in the area covered by the new park.
At this meeting, the commission for conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources agreed unanimously to designate the Ross Sea as an MPA, which is announced by Murray McCully, Foreign Minister of New Zealand.