Macquarie Island is located between Australia and Antarctica and is a habitat for king penguins and fur seals, in addition to a scientific center.
Australia plans to create a Spanish-sized marine park around remote islands off its southeastern coast, the Australian government said Sunday.
The project aims to triple the size of Macquarie Island Marine Park, bringing the total area of the protected area to 475,465 square kilometres.
These preventive measures mean that the area “will be completely closed to fishing and mining activities and other resources,” according to what the Australian Environment Minister, Tanya Plebersk, confirmed.
However, the catch of Patagonian toothfish (which are carnivores) can continue.
Macquarie Island is located between Australia and Antarctica, and is home to king penguins and fur seals, as well as a scientific center.
“Maquarie Island is an exceptional and amazing place for fauna and flora, and it is a breeding ground for millions of seabirds, seals and penguins,” Plebersk noted.
The initiative is backed by environmental groups, concerned that the area could become a target for seabed mining and unsustainable commercial fishing.