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World’s largest marine reserve proposed

The Australian government plans to establish the world's largest marine reserve, it was announced on 25 November.

According to environment minister Tony Burke, the protected zone in the Coral Sea would cover an area more than one-and-a-half times the size of France.

New fishing limits would be imposed and exploration for oil and gas would be banned.

The Coral Sea reserve, if approved, would be approximately 989,842 square kilometres.

The world’s largest marine reserve is a 545,000-square-kilometre area established by the UK around the Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean.

The Coral Sea marine proposal is subject to a 90-day consultation.