New Delhi: Just two months before the end of his regime, Barack Obama, US President, took a major action to protect the endangered marine life.
On Thursday, he announced his plan to vastly expand an ocean reserve situated northwest of the main Hawaiian island, creating it one of the world's largest protected marine area.
The president’s proclamation will quadruple the size of a protected area originally designated by his predecessor, George Bush, in 2006, according to The Guardian.
At the time of its establishment in 2006, the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument was stretched to 140,000 square miles of the Pacific Ocean. The new move will dramatically expand this area to 582,578 square miles, an area larger than all the national parks combined.
Any type of commercial extraction activities like commercial fishing, deep sea mining will be completely prohibited in the expanded monument. However, recreational fishing, scientific research and removal of fish and other marine resources for Hawaiian cultural practices are exempted from this rule.
Papahānaumokuākea sanctuary is a habitat of many endangered marine species, including blue whales, short-tailed albatrosses, sea turtles, and the last Hawaiian monk seals. It is also a home of world's north most and healthiest coral reefs.
Obama will visit the protected area on September 1st . This decision is number 26th in the list of US national monument created or expanded under Obama administration.