Namdrik Atoll

June 2012

Conservation benefit: 86-acre marine no-take zone for 10 years

Community benefit: Education and surveillance center, and pearl farming and enforcement equipment

Namdrik is one of the most southerly and remote atolls in the Marshall Islands. Its total land area is just over a square mile, but it encloses a lagoon three times that large. Like many low-lying Pacific Islands, Namdrik faces many challenges, ranging from sea level rise to food security. Namdrik’s leadership has taken an increasing role in improving living conditions through conservation and sustainable development.

One of the exciting sustainable development projects embraced by the Namdrik community is pearl farming. Using the black-lip pearl oyster, they are producing black South Seas pearls, also known as “Tahitian black” pearls. Pearl farming has proven ideal in other remote areas of the Pacific, as pearls are of high value, easy to transport, and non-perishable. Namdrik is the only place in the Marshall Islands where black-lip pearl oysters are present in significant quantity, due to its enclosed pristine lagoon.

Working with the Namdrik Atoll Development Authority, Seacology is funding an education and surveillance center, as well as pearl farming and enforcement equipment for the protected area. In return, the community will create a 35-hectare (86-acre) marine protected area within the lagoon for 10 years.

Full or partial funding for this project provided by
Seacology Scandinavia.
Project Updates
July 2016
Seacology's Micronesia Field Representative, Simon Ellis, visited Namdrik Atoll this month and reports that the marine reserve, which is in view of the project site, is still fully protected. The...
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June 2014
This project was completed in March 2014, and Seacology staff has approved the final financial and narrative reports from the project manager.
February 2014
The project is nearing completion. Final materials needed to complete the construction (mostly finishing work) for the education, monitoring and surveillance Center have been ordered. The water...
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June 2013
The seeding technician, Ms. Api McLeod from the Cook Islands, visited Namdrik for four weeks in 2012 to conduct farm and seeding training. Farm materials were purchased, and surplus funds were...
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