Protected by State and Country
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service manages most of the Northwestern Islands. From Necker to the Pearl and Hermes Atoll is the Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge, which was established in 1909 by President Theodore Roosevelt. The refuge is closely protected, and a special use permit is required to visit. Midway Atoll is also home to the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. Kuri Atoll is under the jurisdiction of the State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources.
In 2000, the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve was created by an executive order of President Clinton. The reserve further protects marine waters surrounding the Northwest Hawaiian Islands.
Although it's likely that most visitors will never see any of the islands in this chapter except from afar or through the window of an airplane, they are nonetheless a part of the Hawaiian Islands. They serve a real purpose in preserving life and culture for generations to come. As such, they contribute to Hawaii in ways that are not always recognized by the average tourist, and their value is priceless.