President Obama created the world’s largest protected area in the Pacific Ocean

See the original posting on The Verge

Back in early 2009, shortly before he left office, outgoing President George W. Bush created three massive protected areas in a few parts of the Pacific Ocean controlled by the United States (a move undertaken at the behest of then-First Lady Laura Bush). This week, President Obama moved to expand one of those areas, the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument — which encompasses the waters around several island chains southwest of Hawaii — to six times its previous size. The resulting area protected area now covers about 490,000 square miles and is the largest marine reserve on the planet, as well as the largest protected area in the world.

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