Minister of Environment Dr Hussain Rasheed Hassan, on Sunday, stated that the government had decided to declare the southern atolls of Addu and Fuvahmulah as biosphere reserves.
So far, the only biosphere reserve in Maldives is Baa Atoll. The minister mentioned that after Baa Atoll, which boasts an abundance of manta rays, was declared a biosphere reserve, work commenced to maintain its marine life.
Minister Hussain asserted that they will propose to establish the atolls as biosphere reserves to UNESCO in September.
UNESCO declares a place as a biosphere reserve with proper documents from the government and if requirements are met. Addu and Fuvahmulah are two cities renowned for their wildlife and greenery.
“We can only do this with the support of the locals. We are declaring them biospheres so we can preserve them for future generations”, he said.
According to the minister, more atolls will be declared biosphere reserves in future.
“Maldives will be connected with a network of biospheres”.
Baa Atoll was declared a biosphere reserve during former President Mohamed Waheed’s tenure. Environmentalists call for all atolls of Maldives to be declared biosphere reserves.