By Charles N. Ehler, Ocean Visions Consulting, charles.ehler [at] me.com
The New Year is a good time to pause and assess where we are and where we might go over the next 10-12 years in the rapidly developing field of integrated marine spatial planning (MSP).
Integrated MSP is alive and well in many parts of the world and continues to grow at astonishing speed. Strategic debates about the long-term future of marine areas are being held in various fora throughout the world. Today almost 10% of the world’s exclusive economic zones (EEZs) are covered by government-approved marine spatial plans—an impressive accomplishment that has been reached only over the past 10-12 years. Over the next 10-12 years marine spatial plans will easily cover more than a third of marine waters under national jurisdiction.