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Where are the most Terrestrial and Marine Protected Areas? - Answers

Questions answered : 931||Last updated on : April 18th, 2016 At 08:30am (ET)

Where are the most Terrestrial and Marine Protected Areas?

World Map showing terrestrial and marine areas

The majority of the countries have terrestrial and marine (land and sea) protected areas. Some of the terrestrial protected areas can cover 1,000’s of hectares and have been labeled as ‘scientific reserves’ by national authorities, and thus, public access is limited. Meanwhile, marine protected areas often have intertidal or subtidal zones that are at the water’s edge and are surrounded with flora and fauna. The cultural and historical features of the region come under reservation by the law and other protective organizations.

These are the areas that have been reserved by law, with an aim to protect either a part, or the whole of the enclosed environment. Protection is one of the ways to conserve biodiversity. These protected areas are the framework of protection strategies, which are supported by governments and numerous international institutions. The threatened species currently existing in the world are protected via these strategies. These regions are increasingly being recognized as essential providers of ecosystem services and biological resources. While some locations come under the strict control of governments, many of the terrestrial and marine protected areas are maintained by private individuals, companies, communities and faith groups.

According to the World Bank data, as of 2016, about 12.8 percent of the total land surface is covered by terrestrial and marine protected areas. Compared to other countries or territories, Monaco has the largest expanse of terrestrial and marine protected areas, and that is 99.7%. Next is the French territory of New Caledonia, with 91% of the total land sustaining marine and terrestrial protected area.

Apart from these two and St. Martin, Palau and Slovenia, every region has less than 30% of protected reserves. In fact, countries Qatar, Liberia, Syria and Papua New Guinea don’t even partake 1% of land covered by the same.

Get to know the percentage of terrestrial and marine protected areas in each country by referring to the table below.

Country 2016 (%age of total marine and terrestrial area)
Monaco 99.7
New Caledonia 95.8
St. Martin 92.4
Palau 82.9
Slovenia 55.1
Bhutan 48
Liechtenstein 42.5
Hong Kong 41.9
Germany 38.7
Zambia 38
Poland 38
Slovakia 37.3
Venezuela 36.9
Congo Republic 36.7
Northern Mariana Islands 33.2
Luxembourg 32.3
Bolivia 30.9
Tanzania 30.8
New Zealand 30.5
Botswana 29.1
Benin 28.9
Australia 28.6
Austria 28.4
Bulgaria 28.3
Zimbabwe 27.2
United States of America 26.3
France 26.1
Belgium 24.6
Nepal 23.6
Croatia 23.5
Namibia 23.2
Armenia 23.1
Romania 22.6
Hungary 22.6
Greenland 22.4
United Kingdom 22.3
Tajikistan 22.3
Togo 21.8
Czech Republic 21.7
Guinea 21.4
Andorra 21.2
Brazil 20.7
Cambodia 20.6
Belize 20.6
Chad 20.4
Estonia 19.5
Morocco 18.5
Ethiopia 18.5
Central African Republic 18.1
Netherlands 17.9
Denmark 17.8
Latvia 17.5
Mongolia 17.4
Niger 17.3
Lithuania 17.3
Malawi 16.9
Laos 16.7
North America 16.3
Uganda 16.1
China 15.9
Guatemala 15.7
South Sudan 15.5
Nicaragua 15.5
Spain 15.2
Burkina Faso 15.1
Cote d’Ivoire 14.9
Senegal 14.5
Ecuador 14.4
Finland 14.2
Chile 13.6
Mozambique 13.4
World 13.4
Italy 13.3
Peru 13.1
Gibraltar 13.1
Albania 13.1
South Africa 13
Sweden 12.9
Democratic Republic of the Congo 12.6
Thailand 12.5
Honduras 12.4
Gabon 12.1
Kiribati 11.8
Nigeria 11.6
Guinea-Bissau 11.6
Egypt 11.6
Dominican Republic 11.2
Kuwait 11
Kenya 10.5
Cameroon 10.4
Pakistan 9.8
Switzerland 9.7
Macedonia 9.7
Belarus 9.5
Colombia 9.4
United Arab Emirates 9.2
Rwanda 9.1
Portugal 9.1
Brunei Darussalam 9
Malaysia 8.9
American Samoa 8.7
Israel 8.6
Greece 8.6
Suriname 8.5
Mali 8.2
Ghana 7.8
Iran 7.7
Russia 7.6
Burundi 7.6
Argentina 7.5
Cuba 7.2
Algeria 7.1
Mexico 6.8
Paraguay 6.5
Kyrgyzstan 6.5
Canada 6.5
Malta 6.4
Georgia 6.4
Serbia 6.1
Azerbaijan 5.5
Guyana 5.3
Tunisia 5.2
Panama 5.2
Sint Maarten 5.1
Indonesia 5.1
Norway 5
Angola 5
South Asia 5
Eritrea 4.9
Bangladesh 4.9
Timor-Leste 4.4
Isle of Man 4.3
Moldova 4.2
Swaziland 4.1
Myanmar 4.1
Saudi Arabia 4
Ireland 4
Ukraine 3.9
South Korea 3.9
India 3.5
Uzbekistan 3.4
Sri Lanka 3.4
Sierra Leone 3.3
Turkmenistan 3.2
Kazakhstan 3.2
Philippines 3.1
Costa Rica 3
Vietnam 2.9
Sudan 2.8
Montenegro 2.6
Cabo Verde 2.6
Singapore 2.5
Iceland 2.4
Uruguay 2.3
El Salvador 2.2
Japan 2.1
Trinidad and Tobago 2
Puerto Rico 2
Madagascar 2
Jordan 1.8
Equatorial Guinea 1.8
Cyprus 1.7
Bahrain 1.7
Tonga 1.5
Iraq 1.5
Bosnia and Herzegovina 1.5
Jamaica 1.4
Gambia 1.4
North Korea 1.3
Djibouti 1.3
Bahamas 1.2
Mauritania 1.1
United States Virgin Islands 1
Oman 1
Lebanon 1
Fiji 1
St. Lucia 0.9
Somalia 0.8
Qatar 0.8
Liberia 0.8
Syria 0.7
Papua New Guinea 0.7
Yemen 0.6
Dominica 0.6
St. Vincent and the Grenadines 0.5
Aruba 0.5
Turks and Caicos Islands 0.4
Marshall Islands 0.3
Libya 0.3
Lesotho 0.3
Haiti 0.3
Curacao 0.3
Antigua and Barbuda 0.3
Turkey 0.2
St. Kitts and Nevis 0.2
Solomon Islands 0.2
Sao Tome and Principe 0.2
Samoa 0.2
Grenada 0.2
Vanuatu 0.1
Seychelles 0.1
Guam 0.1
Comoros 0.1
Cayman Islands 0.1
British Virgin Islands 0.1
Afghanistan 0.1
Tuvalu 0
Federated States of Micronesia 0
Mauritius 0
Maldives 0
French Polynesia 0
Faroe Islands 0
Bermuda 0
Barbados 0

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