Groups like the Pew Charitable Trust and Greenrock have thrown their support behind the proposal, saying a large marine reserve could boost the tourism industry and protect the environment while establishing Bermuda as a world leader in conservation.

However former Premier David Saul, a shareholder in a local subsea mineral prospecting company, has called the proposal "economic suicide", arguing the seabed in Bermuda's EEZ could hold enough minerals to pay off the national debt with money to spare.

The Government is currently seeking the public's input in the proposal. A survey by the Sustainable Development Department released last month details three potential marine reserve plans, but members of the public can also suggest their own alternative, or say they want no marine reserve at all.

The meeting will take place between 6.30pm and 8.30pm on October 28 at the City Hall's Earl Cameron Theatre.

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