Popular images of Fiji are not far off the mark: Tropical islands set amid glistening, turquoise seas, representing an imagined paradise. Fiji is inextricably bound to the ocean, both environmentally and culturally. But like all island nations, Fiji faces persistent challenges in the face of a changing climate.

To address these challenges, scientists, conservation practitioners, decision and policymakers will converge on Suva, Fiji September 14–16, during the 2nd Fiji Conservation Science Forum. The participants will discuss the ongoing climate-biodiversity crisis as well as the current and future projects that will safeguard Fiji’s people and environment against the effects of climate change.

At the forum, WCS-Fiji conservationists Dr. Stacy Jupiter, Kino Koto, Margaret Fox, Dr. Rebecca Weeks, Akanisi Caginitoba, and Yashika Nand will present on topics such as human and climate impacts to Fiji’s freshwater fishes, coral reef conservation, and fisheries management practices designed to improve both the health of Fijian seascapes and the local livelihoods they support.

WCS has been working in Fiji for many years to help preserve its marine resources and the livelihoods and culture of its people. Together with local and global partners, we worked to create Fiji’s first marine protected areas network. Recently, in honor of World Oceans Day 2011, WCS conservationists traveled alongside a group of Fijians to Totoya Island to help make history as the island’s chief declared a portion of its vibrant coral reefs sacred.

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