HOW TO ESTABLISH A PROTECTED AREA

PAPUA NEW GUINEA’S PROTECTED AREAS ARE THE KEY TO PROTECTING THE COUNTRY’S OUTSTANDING BIODIVERSITY AND PROTECTING LOCAL LIVES AND LIVELIHOODS. 

National protected areas are gazetted under national legislation, including:

NP – National
parks

MS – Marine
sanctuaries

NHA – National
heritage areas

SMA – Special
management areas

Regional protected areas are gazetted through provincial government legislation, including:

CCA – Community
conservation areas

LMMA – Locally managed
marine areas

ESTABLISHING A NEW PROTECTED AREA IN PAPUA NEW GUINEA

The Papua New Guinea Protected Area Network is the foundation of a cohesive approach to protect the country’s outstanding biodiversity and benefit the local communities and customary landowners. Protected Areas are divided into National Protected Areas and Regional Protected Areas.

Step

1

Making proposals

Who

Proponent, i.e. any interested parties (landowners, NG0s, scientists, community champions, etc.)

What happens during this step

Proponent submits Expression of Interest (EoI) using the template in form A, including stakeholder list, preliminary maps, purpose of protected area, protected area type, and other surveys (e.g. local biodiversity, intangible heritage, etc).

Step

2

Getting agreement

Who

Consultations with customary landowners, rights holders, NG0s, and local government

What happens during this step

Proponent works with customary landowners and other community members in partnership with national and provincial authorities to get free, prior and informed consent.

Step

3

Assessing the proposal: Two-step process

Who

Conservation Environment Protection Authority (CEPA) with national and regional partners and technical experts in the National Protected Area Round Table (NPART) and Regional Protected Area Round Table (RPART)

What happens during this step

CEPA will consider the suitability of the proposed land to be designated as a protected area; if yes, should it be a national or regional protected area.

Step

4

Approving and declaring the protected area

Who

RPART or NPART and National Conservation Council (for National Protected Areas), CEPA, non-governmental organizations, and community-based organizations working in protected areas

What happens during this step

After endorsement from the relevant regional or national round table, the National Conservation Council gives final endorsement for national protected areas. All agreements (ex. Statment of Management Intent) are finalised and sent to the Minister for approval and sign-off. Upon gazettal, all parties are informed. The area is entered into the correct register of protected areas.

Step

5

Establishing management

Who

Proponent establishes protected area management committee 

What happens during this step

PA management committee drafts management intent statement and benefit-sharing agreement, set up a management plan, and gather resources (infrastructure, technical advice, training, workforce, etc.) for effective management. 

Key document needed for establishing a protected area

The following forms are needed when establishing a protected area. More information about these forms and the process can be found in the Establishing New PAs in PNG: the PNG Protected Area Management Guideline.