The uniqueness of the SMMA lies in our effort to manage the sustainable use and development of marine resources in the area, providing equitable sharing of those resources to stakeholders.
In order to do this, the coastal area has been divided into a number of zones. These reflect the nature of the biological resource(s) and its potential contribution(s) to the development and well being of the people of Soufriere, and St. Lucia as a whole. Let us visit these zones:
- Marine Reserves
The primary purpose of these areas is to allow fish stocks to regenerate in order to ensure healthy fish populations in the future. These areas of high ecological value have been set aside for the protection of all marine flora and fauna, scientific research, and the enjoyment of divers and snorkelers.Please note that access to the reserves is subject to the acquisition and conditions of a permit, which can be obtained through the local licensed dive operators, authorized dive leaders or the SMMA office in Soufriere.
- Fishing Priority Areas
Divers, snorkelers, yachtsmen, please be aware that in these areas, commercial fishing has precedence over all other activities. Access by other users is allowed only to the extent that it does not interfere with any fishing activities.
- Recreational Areas
For those of us who wish to sun bathe, play in the surf or simply feel the sand between our toes: these areas have been identified as important sites for public recreation, i. e., beaches where local access must be maintained.
- Multiple Use Areas
In these zones, fishing, diving, snorkeling, and other legitimate uses are allowed, as long as the general rules of the SMMA and other national regulations are observed.
- Yacht Mooring Areas
Anchoring is not allowed in the SMMA, thus moorings have been provided for visiting yachts. However, anchoring is allowed as an alternative in a small area north of Anse Chastanet, and the northern part of the Hummingbird beach, provided commercial fishing activities are not disturbed.
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