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Solomon Islands

State of Environment Report 2019

For Solomon Islands our country, our culture, and our economy all stand on the base of the natural physical environment. We cannot afford to ignore the signs of our environment being degraded. The report tells us that there are significant pressures on our environment leading to environmental problems across all the thematic areas, as well as large gaps in the data that we should have to make sound decisions for the future. The report shows that some areas are well managed while in other areas we clearly do not have sufficient resources to address the range of issues facing us. There are clear risks to our water quality, air quality, and biodiversity on land and in the sea. Together, these issues affect the livelihoods, health and wellbeing of our people.

Much room for improvement for Solomon Islands environment

Unsustainable logging

Solomon Islands has large areas of tropical lowland rainforest that provide critical resources for its people.

These forests also support a rich and highly endemic biota, with many plants and animals found nowhere else on earth.

For logging to become sustainable in Solomon Islands, a balance must be struck between the economic, social and environmental needs

The following actions are important steps towards getting this balance right:

  • Review forestry legislation and close loopholes to ensure:
    • Logging companies are held responsible for reforestation, site remediation and environmental monitoring
    • Cultural and heritage sites are protected
    • Logging licenses cannot be extended without a new permit and full assessment of environmental impacts
  • Promote sustainable portable saw-milling for local timber needs and sustainable income generation
  • Strengthen monitoring and enforcement of Forestry Act
  • Implement NBSAP target of 10% terrestrial protected area
  • Protected area network is conserves ecologically and biologically significant sites

Marine protected areas

Just 0.12% or 1,879 km2 of Solomon Islands 1,609,757 km2 Exclusive Economic Zone is protected. At the province scale, Isabel Province leads the way with 4.1% of marine area protected.

The Arnavon Community Marine Park

The Arnavon Islands consist of four small islands located in the Manning Strait between Isabel and Choiseul Province. The Islands are home to the largest rookery of the critically endangered hawksbill turtles in the South Pacific region. In 2017 the Arnavons were declared the country’s first nationally protected area - The Arnavon Community Marine Park.

The Arnavon Community Marine Park Management Committee has been central to all conservation and development activities in the Arnavon Islands. This Committee is made up of representatives from the indigenous users of the Arnavon Islands, the communities of Kia, Katupika and Waghena. It also brings together representatives from Isabel and Choiseul Governments, the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology, the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources and The Nature Conservancy. The ACMP Management Committee employs Rangers from the communities of Kia, Katupika and Waghena, who reside on the Arnavons for a month at a time, monitoring turtle populations and ensuring compliance with the management rules.


The Solomon Islands 2019 State of Environment Report was led and developed by the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management and Meteorology (MECDM), and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP). Content contributions were made by numerous representatives from government and NGOs. A local and an international consultant also assisted with gathering data and writing. There were many others who also helped in the data gathering, analysis and design whom without their assistance, it would not have been possible to develop a report of this complexity and scope. Their contribution is greatly appreciated.

Data and knowledge resources

A growing number of data portals, knowledge libraries, and communication materials are available to support Pacific environmental management. The following are external links to the major environmental information resources.

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