When it was announced that we are creating one of the biggest marine sanctuaries in the world, conservationists far and wide rejoiced.

Scientists have long been calling for more no-take areas, that are proven to help fisheries recover and develop tourism opportunities.

Although it will be hard to see the Kermadec Islands become a tourism cash cow due to their distance from the mainland, the effects of closing off 15 per cent of our Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) for biodiversity will be significant.

Contrary to what some people say, there will also be significant economic gains for the fishing industry. This is because of something called the 'spill - over effect' - where species that flourish inside the sanctuary do so well that they start to compete for habitat and enrich the fishing areas outside of the area. As I have written about before - I have first hand experience of seeing this work and it has resulted in me being able to enjoy crayfish every Christmas.


Much closer to home, in the Hauraki Gulf, another science-based innovation is underway which could make a big difference in cleaning up the pollution that chokes the ecosystem in front of New Zealand's biggest city.

18 year-old schoolgirl and budding scientist Yasmine Dai has won a top prize from NIWA for her work measuring how much silt mussels can filter. Her work is contributing to the epic bioremediation project underway called Revive Our Gulf, which is re-seeding the long-decimated population of wild mussels in an effort to clean up the water.

I for one am very pleased to see these science projects resulting in real change for our oceans.

Do you have any examples of effective science that is delivering results for the oceans? Please leave a comment below or email me.