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Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth: An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland

Citation Information: Enda Kenny, T.D., Taoiseach; Simon Coveney, T.D., Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine; July 2012

ISBN: 978-1-902895-54-3

Description: Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth is an Integrated Marine Plan (IMP), setting out a roadmap for the Government’s vision, high-level goals and integrated actions across policy, governance and business to enable our marine potential to be realised. Implementation of this Plan will see Ireland evolve an integrated system of policy and programme planning for our marine affairs. Implementation of the Plan will, of course, have to be delivered within the over-riding medium-term fiscal framework and budgetary targets adopted by the Government.

Our ocean is a national asset, supporting a diverse marine economy, with vast potential to tap into a €1,200 billion global marine market for seafood, tourism, oil and gas, marine renewable energy, and new applications for health, medicine and technology. In 2007, Ireland generated 1.2% of GDP (€2.4bn direct and indirect Gross Value Added) from its ocean economy, supporting about 1% of the total workforce. Global marine economic activity is estimated to contribute 2% of the world’s GDP and the European Commission estimates that between 3% and 5% of Europe’s GDP was generated from sea-related industries and services in 2007. Many believe that we can achieve substantially more. This real opportunity demands a strong integrated cross-government plan of action.

Our marine resources also provide essential non-commercial benefits such as amenity, biodiversity and our mild climate. Ireland’s marine ecosystems (i.e. offshore, inshore and coastline) are home to a rich and diverse range of species and habitats. Our national asset offers significant potential for Ireland’s marine enterprises and sectors and needs to be protected, managed and developed for and by our citizens. The Government is determined to ensure that our ocean wealth will be a key component of our economic recovery and sustainable growth, generating benefits for all our citizens.

Indian Ocean Rising: Maritime Security and Policy Challenges

Citation Information: Stimson, July 2012

Editors: David Michel and Russell Sticklor

ISBN: 978-0-9836674-6-9

Description: The Indian Ocean is rapidly emerging as a key focus of international politics. Its strategic energy reserves and natural resources, the growing importance of its ports and shipping lanes, and the rise of India, Indonesia, South Africa, and other littoral nations as increasingly significant regional powers and global players are transforming the Indian Ocean into a major crossroads for multiple security, maritime policy, and governance issues. Rising flows of trade, investment, people, and ideas are linking the Indian Ocean countries to each other and to the rest of the world ever more closely. At the same time, enduring problems ranging from piracy on the high seas to weak and failing states on shore - as well as territorial disputes in the regional seas and mounting environmental pressures on coastal and marine resources - pose persistent challenges for maritime policymakers around the Indian Ocean region.

Indian Ocean Rising: Maritime Security and Policy Challenges explores the evolving security, socio-economic, commercial, and environmental trends that will shape the Indian Ocean region in the coming decades and examines their implications for decision-makers and stakeholders. The authors analyze issues including piracy, trafficking, and terrorism; the deployment of naval power; the commercial shipping industry; the future of the Law of the Sea; regional and offshore energy development; natural resources management; and rising stresses on the marine environment.

Conservation physiology of marine fishes: advancing the predictive capacity of models

Citation Information: Published online before print August 1, 2012, doi: 10.1098/rsbl.2012.0609; Biol. Lett.

Authors: Christian Jørgensen, Myron A. Peck, Fabio Antognarelli, Ernesto Azzurro, Michael T. Burrows, William W. L. Cheung, Andrea Cucco, Rebecca E. Holt, Klaus B. Huebert, Stefano Marras, David McKenzie, Julian Metcalfe, Angel Perez-Ruzafa, Matteo Sinerchia, John Fleng Steffensen, Lorna R. Teal and Paolo Domenici

Abstract: At the end of May, 17 scientists involved in an EU COST Action on Conservation Physiology of Marine Fishes met in Oristano, Sardinia, to discuss how physiology can be better used in modelling tools to aid in management of marine ecosystems. Current modelling approaches incorporate physiology to different extents, ranging from no explicit consideration to detailed physiological mechanisms, and across scales from a single fish to global fishery resources. Biologists from different sub-disciplines are collaborating to rise to the challenge of projecting future changes in distribution and productivity, assessing risks for local populations, or predicting and mitigating the spread of invasive species

Connectivity and resilience of coral reef metapopulations in marine protected areas: matching empirical efforts to predictive needs

Citation Information: Coral Reefs. 2009 June; 28(2): 327–337

DOI: 10.1007/s00338-009-0466-z

Authors: L. W. Botsford, J. W. White, M.- A. Coffroth, C. B. Paris, S. Planes, T. L. Shearer, S. R. Thorrold, and G. P. Jones

Abstract: Design and decision-making for marine protected areas (MPAs) on coral reefs require prediction of MPA effects with population models. Modeling of MPAs has shown how the persistence of metapopulations in systems of MPAs depends on the size and spacing of MPAs, and levels of fishing outside the MPAs. However, the pattern of demographic connectivity produced by larval dispersal is a key uncertainty in those modeling studies. The information required to assess population persistence is a dispersal matrix containing the fraction of larvae traveling to each location from each location, not just the current number of larvae exchanged among locations. Recent metapopulation modeling research with hypothetical dispersal matrices has shown how the spatial scale of dispersal, degree of advection versus diffusion, total larval output, and temporal and spatial variability in dispersal influence population persistence. Recent empirical studies using population genetics, parentage analysis, and geochemical and artificial marks in calcified structures have improved the understanding of dispersal. However, many such studies report current self-recruitment (locally produced settlement/settlement from elsewhere), which is not as directly useful as local retention (locally produced settlement/total locally released), which is a component of the dispersal matrix. Modeling of biophysical circulation with larval particle tracking can provide the required elements of dispersal matrices and assess their sensitivity to flows and larval behavior, but it requires more assumptions than direct empirical methods. To make rapid progress in understanding the scales and patterns of connectivity, greater communication between empiricists and population modelers will be needed. Empiricists need to focus more on identifying the characteristics of the dispersal matrix, while population modelers need to track and assimilate evolving empirical results.

Green economics: putting the planet and politics back into economics

Citation Information: Camb. J. Econ. (2012) doi: 10.1093/cje/bes022

Author: Molly Scott Cato

Abstract: Green economics is arising from a study of the economy that takes a philosophical position characterised by a deep respect for nature. It is primarily a system of ideas and principles, rather than a rationally argued intellectual position. Its ideas are powerful and influential on developments in policy and politics, but it is presently less well grounded in the academy. Green economists do not dwell overmuch on introspection and their method is implicit rather than explicit, relying on a grounded, embedded and phenomenological approach and rejecting the scientism and spurious objectivity of neoclassical economics. In this paper I outline four key issues central to a green study of the economy: the need to end economic growth; the importance of equality and questions of the just distribution of resources; the requirement to consider appropriate scale in economic decision-making; and the need to include multiple perspectives in the study of economics.

Comparing Trawl and Creel Fishing for Norway Lobster (Nephrops norvegicus): Biological and Economic Considerations

Citation Information: Leocádio AM, Whitmarsh D, Castro M (2012) Comparing Trawl and Creel Fishing for Norway Lobster (Nephrops norvegicus): Biological and Economic Considerations. PLoS ONE 7(7): e39567. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0039567

Abstract: This study compares the fishing activity and landings of the trawl and creel fisheries for Norway lobster (Nephrops norvegicus (L.)) off the Portuguese coast, and evaluates the financial viability of two vessels typical of each fleet. Crustacean trawlers are part of an industrial fleet that, besides Nephrops, targets deep water shrimps. Creels are used by a multi-gear, multi-target artisanal fleet, fishing only in areas unavailable to trawlers and, when catching Nephrops, set specifically to target this species. Trawlers have in recent years contributed with 85% of the landings in weight, but only 74% in value (2005–2009 average). Despite smaller landings, the Nephrops creel fishery provides individuals of larger size and in better condition, thereby obtaining higher unit prices. Economic viability was also higher for the creel vessel, with trawling being only viable if major costs (such as labor and fuel) are covered by the revenue from other target species (e.g., the rose shrimp). At present, Nephrops populations on the South and SW coast are subject to intense fishing and to a recovery plan. The possibility of reallocation of some of the fishing effort directed at Nephrops from trawlers to creels is discussed in terms of the conservation of the resource and economic return.

Testing the Effectiveness of an International Conservation Agreement: Marketplace Forensics and CITES Caviar Trade Regulation

Citation Information: Doukakis P, Pikitch EK, Rothschild A, DeSalle R, Amato G, et al. (2012) Testing the Effectiveness of an International Conservation Agreement: Marketplace Forensics and CITES Caviar Trade Regulation. PLoS ONE 7(7): e40907. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0040907

Abstract:

Background

The international wildlife trade is a key threat to biodiversity. Temporal genetic marketplace monitoring can determine if wildlife trade regulation efforts such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) are succeeding. Protected under CITES effective 1997, sturgeons and paddlefishes, the producers of black caviar, are flagship CITES species.

Methodology/Principal Findings

We test whether CITES has limited the amount of fraudulent black caviar reaching the marketplace. Using mitochondrial DNA-based methods, we compare mislabeling in caviar and meat purchased in the New York City area pre and post CITES listing. Our recent sampling of this market reveals a decrease in mislabeled caviar (2006–2008; 10%; n = 90) compared to pre-CITES implementation (1995–1996; 19%; n = 95). Mislabeled caviar was found only in online purchase (n = 49 online/41 retail).

Conclusions/Significance

Stricter controls on importing and exporting as per CITES policies may be having a positive conservation effect by limiting the amount of fraudulent caviar reaching the marketplace. Sturgeons and paddlefishes remain a conservation priority, however, due to continued overfishing and habitat degradation. Other marine and aquatic species stand to benefit from the international trade regulation that can result from CITES listing.

Evidence That Marine Reserves Enhance Resilience to Climatic Impacts

Citation Information: Micheli F, Saenz-Arroyo A, Greenley A, Vazquez L, Espinoza Montes JA, et al. (2012) Evidence That Marine Reserves Enhance Resilience to Climatic Impacts. PLoS ONE 7(7): e40832. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0040832

Abstract: Establishment of marine protected areas, including fully protected marine reserves, is one of the few management tools available for local communities to combat the deleterious effect of large scale environmental impacts, including global climate change, on ocean ecosystems. Despite the common hope that reserves play this role, empirical evidence of the effectiveness of local protection against global problems is lacking. Here we show that marine reserves increase the resilience of marine populations to a mass mortality event possibly caused by climate-driven hypoxia. Despite high and widespread adult mortality of benthic invertebrates in Baja California, Mexico, that affected populations both within and outside marine reserves, juvenile replenishment of the species that supports local economies, the pink abalone Haliotis corrugata, remained stable within reserves because of large body size and high egg production of the protected adults. Thus, local protection provided resilience through greater resistance and faster recovery of protected populations. Moreover, this benefit extended to adjacent unprotected areas through larval spillover across the edges of the reserves. While climate change mitigation is being debated, coastal communities have few tools to slow down negative impacts of global environmental shifts. These results show that marine protected areas can provide such protection.

Making Robust Policy Decisions Using Global Biodiversity Indicators

Citation Information: Nicholson E, Collen B, Barausse A, Blanchard JL, Costelloe BT, et al. (2012) Making Robust Policy Decisions Using Global Biodiversity Indicators. PLoS ONE 7(7): e41128. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0041128

Abstract: In order to influence global policy effectively, conservation scientists need to be able to provide robust predictions of the impact of alternative policies on biodiversity and measure progress towards goals using reliable indicators. We present a framework for using biodiversity indicators predictively to inform policy choices at a global level. The approach is illustrated with two case studies in which we project forwards the impacts of feasible policies on trends in biodiversity and in relevant indicators. The policies are based on targets agreed at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) meeting in Nagoya in October 2010. The first case study compares protected area policies for African mammals, assessed using the Red List Index; the second example uses the Living Planet Index to assess the impact of a complete halt, versus a reduction, in bottom trawling. In the protected areas example, we find that the indicator can aid in decision-making because it is able to differentiate between the impacts of the different policies. In the bottom trawling example, the indicator exhibits some counter-intuitive behaviour, due to over-representation of some taxonomic and functional groups in the indicator, and contrasting impacts of the policies on different groups caused by trophic interactions. Our results support the need for further research on how to use predictive models and indicators to credibly track trends and inform policy. To be useful and relevant, scientists must make testable predictions about the impact of global policy on biodiversity to ensure that targets such as those set at Nagoya catalyse effective and measurable change.

Benefits of Rebuilding Global Marine Fisheries Outweigh Costs

Citation Information: Sumaila UR, Cheung W, Dyck A, Gueye K, Huang L, et al. (2012) Benefits of Rebuilding Global Marine Fisheries Outweigh Costs. PLoS ONE 7(7): e40542. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0040542

Abstract: Global marine fisheries are currently underperforming, largely due to overfishing. An analysis of global databases finds that resource rent net of subsidies from rebuilt world fisheries could increase from the current negative US$13 billion to positive US$54 billion per year, resulting in a net gain of US$600 to US$1,400 billion in present value over fifty years after rebuilding. To realize this gain, governments need to implement a rebuilding program at a cost of about US$203 (US$130–US$292) billion in present value. We estimate that it would take just 12 years after rebuilding begins for the benefits to surpass the cost. Even without accounting for the potential boost to recreational fisheries, and ignoring ancillary and non-market values that would likely increase, the potential benefits of rebuilding global fisheries far outweigh the costs.

Combined Spatio-Temporal Impacts of Climate and Longline Fisheries on the Survival of a Trans-Equatorial Marine Migrant

Citation Information: Ramos R, Granadeiro JP, Nevoux M, Mougin J-L, Dias MP, et al. (2012) Combined Spatio-Temporal Impacts of Climate and Longline Fisheries on the Survival of a Trans-Equatorial Marine Migrant. PLoS ONE 7(7): e40822. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0040822

Abstract: Predicting the impact of human activities and their derivable consequences, such as global warming or direct wildlife mortality, is increasingly relevant in our changing world. Due to their particular life history traits, long-lived migrants are amongst the most endangered and sensitive group of animals to these harming effects. Our ability to identify and quantify such anthropogenic threats in both breeding and wintering grounds is, therefore, of key importance in the field of conservation biology. Using long-term capture-recapture data (34 years, 4557 individuals) and year-round tracking data (4 years, 100 individuals) of a trans-equatorial migrant, the Cory’s shearwater (Calonectris diomedea), we investigated the impact of longline fisheries and climatic variables in both breeding and wintering areas on the most important demographic trait of this seabird, i.e. adult survival. Annual adult survival probability was estimated at 0.914±0.022 on average, declining throughout 1978–1999 but recovering during the last decade (2005–2011). Our results suggest that both the incidental bycatch associated with longline fisheries and high sea surface temperatures (indirectly linked to food availability; SST) increased mortality rates during the long breeding season (March-October). Shearwater survival was also negatively affected during the short non-breeding season (December-February) by positive episodes of the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). Indirect negative effects of climate at both breeding (SST) and wintering grounds (SOI) had a greater impact on survival than longliner activity, and indeed these climatic factors are those which are expected to present more unfavourable trends in the future. Our work underlines the importance of considering both breeding and wintering habitats as well as precise schedules/phenology when assessing the global role of the local impacts on the dynamics of migratory species.

Seahorses helped drive creation of marine protected areas, so what did these protected areas do for the seahorses?

Citation Information: Environmental Conservation (2012), 39 : pp 183-193

Authors: M. Yasué, A. Nellas, and A. C. J. Vincent

Abstract: In marine environments, charismatic or economically valued taxa have been used as flagships to garner local support or international funds for the establishment and management of marine protected areas (MPAs). Seahorses (Hippocampus spp.) are frequently used as flagship species to help engender support for the creation of small community-managed no-take MPAs in the central Philippines. It is thus vital to determine whether such MPAs actually have an effect on seahorse abundance, reproductive status and size. A survey of seahorses inside and immediately adjacent to eight MPAs, and in four distant unprotected fishing areas, showed these MPAs had no significant effect on seahorse densities; although densities in and near MPAs were higher than in the distant fished sites, seahorse densities did not change over time. Seahorse size did show a marginal reserve effect, with slightly larger seahorses being found inside MPAs as compared to the distant unprotected fishing areas, but, in general, MPAs had little impact on seahorse size. Although MPAs may eliminate local fishing pressure, they may not reduce other threats such as pollution or destructive fishing outside the reserves. Other recovery tools, such as ecosystem-based management, habitat restoration and limits on destructive fishing outside of MPAs, may be necessary to rebuild seahorse populations. The effects of MPAs depend on species, as well as conditions outside the reserve boundaries. MPA management objectives must thus be clearly and realistically articulated to the communities, especially if support for an MPA was derived at least partly to conserve a particular flagship species.

Marine Biodiversity, Climate Change, and Governance of the Oceans

Citation Information: Diversity 2012, 4(2), 224-238; doi:10.3390/d4020224

Author: Robin Kundis Craigemail

Abstract: Governance of marine biodiversity has long suffered from lack of adequate information about the ocean’s many species and ecosystems. Nevertheless, even as we are learning much more about the ocean’s biodiversity and the impacts to it from stressors such as overfishing, habitat destruction, and marine pollution, climate change is imposing new threats and exacerbating existing threats to marine species and ecosystems. Coastal nations could vastly improve their fragmented approaches to ocean governance in order to increase the protections for marine biodiversity in the climate change era. Specifically, three key governance improvements would include: (1) incorporation of marine spatial planning as a key organizing principle of marine governance; (2) working to increase the resilience of marine ecosystems be reducing or eliminating existing stressors on those ecosystems; and (3) anticipation of climate change’s future impacts on marine biodiversity through the use of anticipatory zoning and more precautionary regulation.

Spatial patterns in the retained catch composition of Irish demersal otter trawlers: High-resolution fisheries data as a management tool

Citation Information: Fisheries Research; Volumes 129–130, October 2012, Pages 127–136

Authors: H.D. Gerritsen, C. Lordan, C. Minto, S.B.M. Kraak

Abstract: High-resolution fisheries data from integrated logbook and Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) records have revealed a detailed spatial structure in the species composition of the retained catches of the Irish demersal otter trawl fleets. Hierarchical cluster analysis was used to define 8 clusters with relatively homogenous species compositions. These clusters formed 34 distinct spatial regions in the waters around Ireland. Identification of these regions can be useful for a number applications, including spatial stratification of commercial or survey data, defining and characterising fishing grounds for marine spatial planning, evaluation of closed areas and prediction of how fishing effort might be re-allocated following a closure. A case-study is presented that explores options to reduce cod (Gadus morhua) catches by implementing seasonal closures in two of the 34 regions. Cod are caught by demersal trawlers in a mixed fishery and the catches often exceed the quota, resulting in discarding of marketable fish. Two regions were identified that had relatively low effort and high cod landings. The effects of closing these regions during the first quarter of the year were explored. Cod catches were likely to be reduced by 8–22% while only 3–9% of the annual demersal otter trawl effort would be displaced. Whiting catches were also likely to be reduced, the change in catches of some other species depended on the assumed effort displacement.

Governance of marine protected areas in the least-developed countries: Case studies from West Africa

Citation Information: Weigel, J.Y.; Féral, F. & Cazalet, B., eds. Governance of marine protected areas in least-developed countries. Case studies from West Africa.. FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Paper No. 548. Rome, FAO. 2011. 78 pp.

Abstract: The need for effective governance of the marine protected areas (MPAs) in leastdeveloped countries (LDCs) is commensurate with the significant territorial stakes raised by their extensive maritime domain. Another significant challenge is the conservation of biodiversity and of ecosystems whose level of productivity is similar to that of coral reefs (e.g. in East Africa and Madagascar, the Red Sea, Maldives, Cambodia, and South Pacific islands), upwelling systems (e.g. in West Africa and Angola) and estuarine and delta ecosystems (e.g. in West and East Africa, Bangladesh and Myanmar). However, the overriding issue is to reconcile conservation and human presence as, in LDCs, human activities are tolerated in almost all MPAs covered by International Union for Conservation of Nature categories II–VI. Finally, issues related to identity claims and to the process of establishment of property and other legal entitlements on nature are gaining importance.

A review of the literature on fisheries and MPAs governance showed how polysemous and vague the notion of governance was until very recently and how few or oversimplified were the analyses of MPA governance in the LDCs. However, only detailed analyses would allow the characterization of governance systems and identification of their weaknesses with the view to suggesting new governance arrangements and appropriate public policy options. Such analytical deficiencies may be explained by the lack of analytical frameworks capable of taking into account the plurality and intricacy of socio-economic organizations and institutions, the sociocultural features and the role of new mediators and “development brokers” that shape MPA governance in the LDCs. The deficiencies may also be explained by the fact that the dominating hierarchical governance systems tend to underestimate the complexity of MPA governance systems.

Marine protected areas: Country case studies on policy, governance and institutional issues

Citation Information: Sanders, J.S.; Gréboval, D.; Hjort, A. (comp.) Marine protected areas: country case studies on policy, governance and institutional issues FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Paper. No. 556/1, Rome. FAO. 2011. 118p.

ISBN: 978-92-5-106857-1

Abstract: This document presents case studies of the policy, governance and institutional issues of marine protected areas (MPAs) in Brazil, India, Palau and Senegal. It is the first of four in a global series of case studies on MPAs. An initial volume provides a synthesis and analysis of all the studies. The set of global MPA case studies was designed to close a deficit in information on the governance of MPAs and spatial management tools, within both fisheries management and biodiversity conservation contexts. The studies examine governance opportunities in and constraints on the use of spatial management measures at the national level. They were also designed to inform implementation of the FAO Technical Guidelines on marine protected areas (MPAs) and fisheries, which were developed to provide information and guidance on the use of MPAs in the context of fisheries.

Is Canada on track to create 12 new marine protected areas by December 2012?

Citation Information: Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS), Dare to be Deep Progress Report

Date: May 14, 2012

Executive Summary: With the longest coastline of any country in the world, but less than one percent of our oceans under any form of meaningful protection, Canada’s rich marine ecosystems are at growing peril. The biggest threats to marine biodiversity are overfishing, industrial development, pollution and climate change.

Recognizing that Canada is not going to achieve its international commitment to completing a full network of marine protected areas by 2012, one year ago CPAWS challenged the federal government, working with the provinces and Indigenous peoples, to demonstrate real progress towards this commitment by significantly advancing protection of 12 special marine sites by December 2012. These 12 sites are extraordinary places that nurture fish stocks and shelter endangered species like Right and Blue whales, Atlantic wolffish and Leatherback turtles. They are also amazing destinations for nature lovers to marvel at the wonders above and below the ocean’s surface.

As a national conservation organization with chapters in nearly every province and territory, CPAWS staff and volunteers are directly engaged in marine conservation efforts in the 12 areas reviewed in this report. One year after we launched our challenge to create 12 new marine protected areas by 2012 we have reviewed the action by governments to move these 12 sites closer to final protection. We have assessed how much progress has been made towards establishing these marine protected areas, as well as the strength of conservation measures being proposed for each site.

Analysis of United States MPAs: March 2012

Citation Information: NOAA National Marine Protected Areas Center, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, NOAA Ocean Service

Date: April 2012

Authors: Lauren Wenzel, Mimi D'lorio, and Kara Yeager.

Description: The U.S. has more than 1700 MPAs. These areas cover more than 41% of U.S. marine waters, and vary widely in purpose, legal authorities, managing agencies, management approaches, level of protection, and restrictions on human uses.

Some highlights:

  • About 8% of all U.S. waters are in an MPA focused on conserving natural or cultural resources (excludes fishery MPAs which often have specific gear restrictions over large ocean areas)
  • About 41% of all U.S. waters are in some form of MPA
  • Nearly all (86%) of U.S. MPAs are multiple use
  • "No take" MPAs occupy only about 3% of all U.S. waters
  • Less than 8% of the area in MPAs in the U.S. is "no take"
  • The majority of U.S. MPAs are located within the Virginian Atlantic marine ecoregion, which extends along Cape Hatteras northward to Cape Cod
  • State and territorial governments manage approximately 75% of the nation’s MPAs, but most MPA area is managed by federal agencies

Disclaimer: The statistics in the "Analysis of United States MPAs" fact sheet are current as of March 2012 and are based on 1,563 sites in U.S. marine waters (0-200 nautical miles) with GIS data.

Some upstream and estuarine MPAs meet the definition of "marine" and thus are included in the national and regional number of MPAs. However, they are not included in statistics on MPA area because they are not located geographically within the area defined as "U.S. marine waters" (0-200 nautical miles) or Great Lakes.

Mission Report: Reactive Monitoring Mission to Great Barrier Reef (Australia) 6th to 14th March 2012

Citation Information: UNESCO World Heritage Centre - IUCN

Date: June 2012

Authors: Fanny Douvere and Tim Badman

Description: This report contains the results of a reactive monitoring mission requested by the World Heritage Committee at its 35th session (UNESCO, Paris) and undertaken jointly by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN. The mission was undertaken jointly according to the roles established by the World Heritage Convention and its operational guidelines. The reactive monitoring mission was undertaken from 6-14 March 2012 with the objective to assess the state of conservation of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage property and to contribute to the strategic assessment process, as requested by the World Heritage Committee at its 35th session (Decision 35 COM 7B10).

The World Heritage Committee, at its forthcoming 36th session (St. Petersburg, 2012) will consider the findings of the mission and the draft decision prepared by World Heritage Centre and IUCN as part of the State of Conservation report. A final decision about the state of conservation of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area and the measures required to secure its long-term conservation is due at the 36th World Heritage Committee session that will take place in St. Petersburg from 24 June to 6 July 2012.

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