The Bahamas does not currently have a marine managed area in its national park system to protect the vital coral reef ecosystems around New Providence Island, including those in Clifton Bay.
Save The Bays supports the Bahamas National Trust’s (BNT) proposal for the establishment of the West New Providence Marine Managed Area to protect the western portion of New Providence Island. Such a protected area would contribute significantly to our mission of preserving Clifton Bay and other common marine environments; particularly the area’s coral reefs where the risk of human impacts are the greatest.
As a world famous scuba diving mecca, the marine environment of New Providence Island draws thousands of tourists each year. It also serves as a key transshipment point for the country and is heavily used by recreational and sport fishermen. Increasing usage makes the establishment of a marine managed area essential to regulate and sustain the area’s sensitive natural resources.
BNT is recommending a multi-zoned management approach that would allow for continued sustainable fishing, tourism, transport and development activities while preventing further degradation of coral reefs and allowing for the replenishment of depleted marine resources.
The Ministry of the Environment is currently reviewing BNT’s proposal (see West New Providence Marine Managed Area Proposal).
Public support and participation is critical for the protected marine area to become a reality. BNT is committed to ensuring the local community has direct input into decisions about management practices and zoning of the proposed marine managed area.