PAPUA New Guinea is putting its surf management plan into operation. The good news is that it works, reports the Surfer Today website.
PNG has developed a rulebook to minimise the impact of surf tourism on the fragile ecosystem, on local communities and on the quality of the surfing experience.
"PNG is a land of contrasts, transparent blue waters, ancient traditions, and multiple isolated islands," reports Surfer Today, adding that it's important to keep it alive, healthy, and natural. Couldn't agree more
Much of PNG's land ownership remains governed by customary law, and this extends to coastal clans who exercise traditional custodial rights to shorelines and fringing reefs.
"Surf management plans are essentially access agreements which enlist sustainable quota limits in exchange for fees and levies," says the PNG Surfing Association.
The original idea of creating a surf management plan dates back to 1989, when Andy Abel proposed it. Now it's happened, and the plan is effectively running in the great surfing spots of Vanimo, Tupira, Lavongai, and Kavieng.
Noosa, where I now live, is a great surfing destination and - like PNG - ecologically sensitive. I'm thinking of bringing some PNG surfers to Noosa to swap information and war stories with the locals. I'd like to hear from anyone who may be interested. Email me here.