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ConocoPhillips recently selected Conservation International as one of four pilot partners for the company's new Global Signature Program Pilot focused on water and biodiversity stewardship. ConocoPhillips is supporting an 18-month integrated ecosystem-based management project in the Anambas Natuna Seascape in Indonesia, one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world.

Under this effort, CI will undertake a Marine Rapid Assessment Program, strengthen the management of the Anambas Islands Marine Tourism Park, build stakeholder support for marine conservation in Natuna Islands and provide skills and capacity building to empower communities to manage their own natural resources.

The Anambas Natuna Seascape is a priority geography for both ConocoPhillips and CI due to its significance to Indonesia's economic development through oil and gas investments, as well as its extensive coral reef, mangrove, and seagrass ecosystems, which support highly diverse assemblages of marine life and important fisheries.

Work in this region is essential as the Seascape’s extensive ecosystems also provide vital services to local communities, most importantly, food and income from fisheries. The local government and communities are also interested in expanding the sustainable tourism industry to grow the local economy. Overfishing and habitat degradation pose major threats to the sustainability of these local livelihoods. Currently, the region hosts one of the largest Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Indonesia’s national system of MPAs and one of only a few MPAs found in the western reaches of the country. It was established in 2011 to protect diverse coral reef and mangrove areas.

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EditImage Alt Text:Coral reef in Viti Levu, Fiji, Oceania. © William Crosse