The Liberal National Government has today finalised the Great Kimberley Marine Park with the creation of the massive 1,845,000 hectare North Kimberley Marine Park.
Environment Minister Albert Jacob said about three million hectares of ocean - more than half of the State's Kimberley coastal waters - would now be protected in six new marine parks.
"Under the Kimberley Science and Conservation Strategy, we have successfully established new marine parks at Camden Sound, Eighty Mile Beach, Horizontal Falls, North Lalang-garram, Roebuck Bay and now North Kimberley," Mr Jacob said.
"This has increased the total area of the State's marine parks and reserves by more than 200 per cent, from 1.5 million hectares to about five million hectares since 2008, delivering jobs, eco-tourism opportunities and unprecedented environmental protection.
"The North Kimberley Marine Park protects coral reefs, mangrove-lined creeks and bays and sandy beaches that are home to a variety of marine species including dugongs, whales, dolphins, sawfish and turtles.
"The north Kimberley is also rich in Aboriginal culture and the Balanggarra, Wunambal Gaambera, Ngarinyin and Miriuwung Gajerrong people have a cultural, spiritual and social connection to the north Kimberley sea country.
"This marine park delivers further employment and management opportunities for these traditional owners and fosters growth in eco-tourism, while protecting the incredible environmental values of the place."
Balanggarra sea country in the North Kimberley Marine Park will be jointly managed by traditional owners and the Department of Parks and Wildlife following the release of the 10-year management plan today.
The Kimberley Science and Conservation Strategy is the biggest conservation project ever undertaken in WA and is delivering unprecedented protection for the Kimberley's unique natural assets.
The Great Kimberley Marine Park is an interconnected area covering the four biggest parks in the Kimberley: Lalang-garram/Camden Sound Marine Park, Lalang-garram/Horizontal Falls Marine Park, North Lalang-garram Marine Park and the North Kimberley Marine Park
The area contains more than 1,000 islands and supports many threatened, protected and culturally important species such as dugongs, turtles and sawfish
Minister's office - 6552 5800