Conflict surrounding commercial fisheries is a common phenomenon when diverse stakeholders are involved. Harvesting reef fish for the global ornamental fish trade has provoked conflict since the late 1970s in the State of Hawaii. Two decades later the state of Hawaii established a network of marine protected areas (MPAs) on the west coast of the island of Hawaii (“West Hawaii”) to protect and enhance the fish resources and alleviate conflict between stakeholders, principally between commercial dive tour operators and aquarium fishers. The perceptions held by these stakeholders on West Hawaii and Maui were evaluated to understand how MPAs influenced conflict dimensions, as the former location had a well-established MPA network designed to alleviate conflict, while the latter did not. This was accomplished by analyzing the following questions: (1) perceptions about the effectiveness of MPAs to alleviate conflict and enhance reef fish; (2) perceived group encounters and threats to coral reefs; (3) willingness to encourage fishing; and (4) value orientations toward the aquarium fish trade. The results indicate the MPAs in West Hawaii were moderately effective for alleviating conflict, encounters between stakeholders occurred on both islands, dive operators strongly opposed commercial fishing and perceived aquarium fishing as a serious threat to the coral reef ecosystem, and polarized value orientations toward the aquarium fish trade confirms pervasive social values conflict. The conflict between these groups was also asymmetrical. MPAs are inadequate for resolving long term conflict between groups who hold highly dissimilar value orientations toward the use of marine resources. Future marine spatial planning and MPA setting processes should include stakeholder value and conflict assessments to avoid and manage tensions between competing user groups.
Border disputes between neighbouring States are a regular occurrence and have the potential to undermine relations at national, regional, local and even individual level. In this instance the conflict over Piran Bay in the Northern Adriatic Sea has led to conflict between the neighbouring States of Croatia and Slovenia. The lack of resolution of this conflict resulted in Croatia being delayed in its accession into the European Union (EU). The border dispute remains unresolved and will go to international arbitration in 2013. Yet it is unlikely that arbitration will provide a solution agreeable to all stakeholders. It is likely that residual feelings of injustice will remain, especially at local level. Analysis of the political context of the dispute and recognition of the biological importance of the region has led to opportunity to combine politics and biological conservation to establish an International Marine Peace Park (IMPP) as a potential mitigation measure to help resolve the conflict. This initiative aims to develop regional ownership over a shared marine space linking the local communities of Slovenia and Croatia that co-habit the adjacent Istrian peninsula. The area of the proposed Piran–Savudrija IMPP hosts numerous habitat types and species which are representative of the region and are of international and national conservation importance. The policies and opportunities associated with EU accession provide the potential political, economic and environmental frameworks to develop a regional agency or a bi-national steering committee for the management of the area. This could allow local communities to develop equitable management and restore good relations while preserving an important regionally representative marine area.
In the CMSP decision-making process, as outlined in the NOP, decision-making authority is provided to the regional planning bodies, which are composed of federal, tribal, and state officials. The NOP recognizes that the coastal and marine spatial plans will need to respond to the needs of all who rely on the marine environment for economic and environmental services, and that effective consultation with the full range of these groups is essential to build the relationships needed to achieve national and regional goals for ocean management. Therefore, stakeholder involvement in the development of regional plans is an important responsibility assigned to the regional planning bodies.
The purpose of this document is to provide an overarching set of suggested principles for effectively engaging all stakeholders in a CMSP process. In developing this informational resource document, the Udall Foundation’s U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution (U.S. Institute) reviewed current and past CMSP stakeholder processes in the United States and internationally, analyzed academic literature on stakeholder engagement best practices, and reviewed surveys and white papers about desirable stakeholder involvement mechanisms from various interest groups, including government, tribal, environmental and ocean user groups. The principles described in this document are drawn from this research and from the U.S. Institute’s experience in developing similar guidelines for a range of complex federal and regional stakeholder involvement efforts.
Coastal resource management requires the resolution of local resource use conflicts. The research on coastal conflict resolution is still scarce despite the progress made in fisheries and marine related conflict studies. Utilizing qualitative methodology this paper makes comparative analyses of strengths and deficits of coastal conflict resolution practices in three conflicts from the Swedish west coast and five conflicts from the United Kingdom, Italy and Belgium, all studied in the context of the European research project SECOA (Solutions to Environmental Contrasts in Coastal Areas). The analyses focus on power relations among the stakeholders and their practices of knowledge use, including knowledge integration and joint learning. The results show deficits of research and practical neglect of these aspects in coastal management. In the discussion the question of how approaches to conflict resolution can be improved and integrated into long-term strategies of sustainable resource management in coastal areas is addressed. It is concluded that complex conflicts over natural resource use require context specific combinations of formal and informal resolution methods. The interconnected components of transformation of power relations, knowledge integration and joint learning are seen as key components of conflict resolution.
This study describes the intergovernmental organizations and legal agreements that pertain to conservation and sustainable use in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) in the Western Indian Ocean and the South East Pacific and considers the progress that has been made towards a collaborative and integrated approach to ocean governance in ABNJ.
The analysis was done as part of the ABNJ Deep Seas Project, a collaborative GEF funded project with UN Environment and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN. For more information see http://www.commonoceans.org/
The objective of this study is to provide a comprehensive mapping and description of the current regulatory landscape of the ocean areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) and to identify potential gaps and weaknesses in the system and its management. The starting point of this exercise is the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), supplemented by a review of other key conventions and institutions that have mandates in relation to activities in ABNJ. The study also provides an overview of global commitments to conservation and sustainable use of the ocean and marine ecosystems to identify opportunities to enhance their implementation through targeted action in ABNJ.
By increasing the understanding of the legal challenges related to ABNJ, the study seeks to support states and global institutions such as the Global Environment Facility (GEF) to identify and implement activities that can achieve an overall net benefit to the global environment from investments in ABNJ. 1 The study seeks to support the GEF partnership, other organisations and states in identifying key opportunities for future conservation and sustainable utilization of ABNJ in the current GEF 6 and upcoming GEF 7 programs.
Environmental conflicts are multi-dimensional. Individual components of environmental and resource-related conflicts are closely interlinked with other structural societal elements, including economic, social, political and cultural developments. Coastal areas are significant for people’s subsistence, as well as industrial development, cultural heritage, and waterways; therefore, they require integrated research approaches and the implementation of comprehensive strategies of resource management, dispute resolution and conflict prevention. This qualitative exploratory study contributes to the development of the field of environmental conflict resolution (ECR) by examining the perceptions and experiences of 52 key stakeholders from the coastal areas of the Great Lakes region of Canada and the United States (US) with regards to environmental and resource conflicts and conflict resolution approaches. The study invited coastal stakeholders such as environmental policymakers, researchers, academics, educators and NGO members to share their perceptions, images, experiences and knowledge about environmental and resource conflicts and conflict resolution practices in the coastal areas of the Great Lakes. The framework of this holistic study integrates public policy, alternative dispute resolution, conflict analysis, project evaluation, dialogue and public participation, education and other creative interventions into an inclusive strategy of integrated environmental and resource management of coastal areas. Analysis of the study participants’ responses revealed several key findings. First, the multi-dimensional character of environmental and resource conflicts and the wide range of coastal stakeholders involved necessitate creating spaces for dialogue and communication among coastal stakeholders, which may facilitate relationship building and encourage collaborative problem solving and constructive conflict resolution. Second, establishing links between science and policymaking within environmental and resource management, as well as introducing conflict resolution education for coastal stakeholders, may significantly enhance the capacity of coastal stakeholders in ECR. Third, coastal stakeholders in the Great Lakes have an extensive and wide-ranging existing local knowledge, experience and expertise in resolving environmental and resource conflicts. Fourth, a conflict resolution system’s design developed in this study may serve as an integrated framework for the analysis and resolution of environmental and resource conflicts. This ECR system design involves such important components as conducting conflict and stakeholder analysis; identifying the root causes of conflict; bringing conflict participants together to discuss resolution options; and building in continuous evaluation of environmental conflict resolution processes.
Marine protected areas (MPAs) are gaining momentum as tools within fisheries management. Although many studies have been conducted to their use and potential, only few authors have considered their use in the High Seas. In this paper, we investigate the effects of fish growth enhancing MPAs on the formation of regional fisheries management organisations (RFMOs) for highly migratory fish stocks. We argue that in absence of enforcement MPAs constitute a weakest-link public good, which can only be realized if everyone agrees. We combine this notion with a game theoretic model of RFMO formation to derive potentially stable RFMOs with and without MPAs. We find that MPAs generally increase the parameter range over which RFMOs are stable, and that they increase stability in a number of cases as compared to the case without MPAs. They do not necessarily induce a fully cooperative solution among all fishing nations. In summary, results of this paper suggest a positive role for MPAs in the High Seas.
Marine protected areas (MPAs) were initially introduced to protect coastal zones and are increasingly being proposed as part of a solution to an integrated approach in managing the oceans. There is also pressure for the use of marine reserves to play a part in the conservation strategy and management of mobile demersal and pelagic species in the high seas. However, as there is no coastal State, all States are free to use the open seas, and the relative success of MPAs depends on whether or not measures can be imposed on both domestic and foreign vessels. Therefore, the question is whether current international and national legislation is sufficiently effective to implement a solution to aid the success of MPAs or if new legal norms need to be introduced to aid the governance of the high seas. The implementation of a surveillance programme of maritime spaces would help to establish the efficacy of any review of the current legislation. New technical developments being utilized in surveillance have opened up the possibility of exploiting technology with a view to surveying and monitoring planet earth in an objective manner. But technical applications employed to manage risks can themselves be dangerous, as they create new risks for the maritime sector (e.g. espionnage). The maritime domain is a difficult and unpredictable environment in which to operate and, therefore, precludes the assured presence of human beings to perform monitoring tasks. Technology offers us the opportunity to overcome the physical difficulties by putting into practice surveillance using more effective methods. Identifying the appropriate technology and providing funding is a priority.
Although high seas resources are being exploited, reciprocal legal obligations to protect its environment have not been met. Marine spatial planning (MSP) is clearly a practical way forward, particularly for the high seas, where non-spatial monitoring is difficult, and where data gaps obstruct conventional management approaches. To ensure the effective application of MSP in the high seas, however, some institutional reforms are necessary. This paper outlines the main hurdles, summarizes existing high seas spatial protections, presents an example of a high seas marine protected area that resulted through MSP, identifies three institutional priorities, and suggests three immediate steps.
During recent years, marine spatial planning has been the focus of considerable interest throughout the world, particularly in heavily used marine areas. Numerous attempts have been made to define the scope and nature of marine spatial planning, but few have discussed how to put it into practice. Read more
The guide uses a clear, straightforward step-by-step approach to show how marine spatial planning can be set up and applied toward achieving ecosystem-based management. Most steps are illustrated with relevant examples from the real world.
The guide aims at providing:
- Understanding what marine spatial planning is about
- Insight in the consecutive steps and tasks of setting up a successful marine spatial planning initiative that can help achieving ecosystem-based management
- Awareness of what has worked and what has not in marine spatial planning practice around the world
The 10 steps for marine spatial planning include:
Step 1 Defining need and establishing authority
Step 2 Obtaining financial support
Step 3 Organizing the process (pre-planning)
Step 4 Organizing stakeholder participation
Step 5 Defining and analyzing existing conditions
Step 6 Defining and analyzing future conditions
Step 7 Developing and approving the spatial management plan
Step 8 Implementing and enforcing the spatial management plan
Step 9 Monitoring and evaluating performance
Step 10 Adapting the marine spatial management process
The impacts of plastic debris on the marine environment have gained the attention of the global community. Although the plastic debris problem presents in the oceans, the failure to control land-based plastic waste is the primary cause of these marine environmental impacts. Plastics in the ocean are mainly a land policy issue, yet the regulation of marine plastic debris from land-based sources is a substantial gap within the international policy framework. Regulating different plastics at the final product level is difficult to implement. Instead, the Montreal Protocol may serve as a model to protect the global ocean common, by reducing the production of virgin material within the plastics industry and by regulating both the polymers and chemical additives as controlled substances at a global level. Similar to the Montreal Protocol, national production and consumption of this virgin content can be calculated, providing an opportunity for the introduction of phased targets to reduce and eliminate the agreed substances to be controlled. The international trade of feedstock materials that do not meet the agreed minimum standards can be restricted. The aim of such an agreement would be to encourage private investment in the collection, sorting and recycling of post-consumer material for reuse as feedstock, thereby contributing to the circular economy. The proposed model is not without its challenges, particularly when calculating costs and benefits, but is worthy of further consideration by the international community in the face of the global threats posed to the ocean by plastics.
Coral reefs are severely threatened and a principal strategy for their conservation is marine protected areas (MPAs). However the drivers of MPA performance are complex and there are likely to be trade-offs between different types of performance (e.g. conservation or welfare related outcomes). We compiled a global dataset from expert knowledge for 76 coral reef MPAs in 33 countries and identified a set of performance measures reflecting ecological and socio-economic outcomes, achievement of aims and reduction of threats, using spatial or temporal comparisons wherever possible. We wanted to test the extent to which distinct types of performance occurred simultaneously, understood as win-win outcomes. Although certain performance measures were correlated, most were not, suggesting trade-offs that limit the usefulness of composite performance scores. Hypotheses were generated as to the impact of MPA features, aims, location, management and contextual variables on MPA performance from the literature. A multivariate analysis was used to test hypotheses as to the relative importance of these “drivers” on eight uncorrelated performance measures. The analysis supported some hypotheses (e.g. benefit provision for the local community improved performance), but not others (e.g. higher overall budget and more research activity did not). Factors endogenous to the MPA (such as size of the no-take area) were generally more significant drivers of performance than exogenous ones (such as national GDP). Different types of performance were associated with different drivers, exposing the trade-offs inherent in management decisions. The study suggests that managers are able to influence MPA performance in spite of external threats and could inform adaptive management by providing an approach to test for the effects of MPA features and management actions in different contexts and so to inform decisions for allocation of effort or funds to achieve specific goals.
The status of main fisheries along the Mexican portion of the Gulf of Mexico Large Marine Ecosystem (GoM-LME) was assessed considering the resources’ most relevant aspects, the fisheries fleet, the fisheries market and the problems that they currently face, with the aim of increasing the stakeholders knowledge, to move towards the implementation of an ecosystem management approach in the region. Several recommendations are made for improving the recovery and sustainability of GoM-LME fisheries. With regard to the tuna fishery, the fishery status is completely exploited. Northern brown shrimp and Atlantic seabob fisheries are within the maximum sustainable yield level, whereas the status of northern pink, red-spotted shrimp and brown rock shrimp fisheries are considered as deteriorated. Striped and white mullet fisheries are completely exploited as well as that of shark and skates. The snook fishery is exploited to the maximum sustainable level. Several initiatives are presented based on an ecosystem approach that has been generated to reinforce traditional management plans in order to avoid further deterioration of these resources. Some economic alternatives are identified to increase the profitability of the fisheries of the GoM-LME along the Mexican coast.
Large Marine Ecosystems located around the margins of the continents provide a countless number of goods and services that sustain and fulfill human life and activities: seafood; habitats; energy sources; nutrient cycling and primary production; weather and climate regulation; coastal protection; water detoxification; sediments trapping; and cultural and economic services, among others. Of 66 Large Marine Ecosystems, ten LMEs are located along the coasts of Latin America – California Current, Gulf of California, Gulf of Mexico, Pacific Central American Coastal, Caribbean Sea, Humboldt Current, Patagonian Shelf, South Brazil Shelf, East Brazil Shelf and North Brazil Shelf. Each one possesses different characteristics that make it unique and essential for local populations. Unfortunately, these Large Marine Ecosystems are threatened by several factors such as coastal population growth, pollution, overexploitation and climate change, but most of all poor governance practice. The concept of Ecosystem Based Management aims to consider ecosystems health and importance in all aspects of the recovery and sustainability of LME goods and services. This chapter introduces a general description of the Large Marine Ecosystem approach to sustainable development of coastal ocean resources, presents the concept of Ecosystem Based Management, describes some goods and services provided by Large Marine Ecosystems and draws a picture of each Latin American Large Marine Ecosystem.
The Peru-Chile GEF-UNDP-Humboldt Current Large Marine Ecosystem Project successfully completed its first five-year phase. It included the delivery of ten thematic reports (TR), a Causal Chain Analysis (CCA), Ecosystem Diagnostic Analyses (EDA)(one each for Chile and Peru), a Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis (TDA) and a Strategic Action Program (SAP). The transboundary problems affecting the state of goods and services provided by the Humboldt Current Large Marine Ecosystem (HCLME) are: (1) non optimal use of fishing resources with socio-economic consequences; (2) anthropogenic disturbance of marine habitats after an increase in pollution levels within the HCLME; and (3) high incidental by-catch and associated fauna destruction and discards as a common problem for the two countries. Governance aspects developed during the past five years (2011-16) included, a “bottom-up” process in Peru and Chile linked to the establishment of new fishing and aquaculture acts, Marine Protected Areas and territorial use rights for artisanal fisheries, new methods for fish stock assessment, and ecolabelling of fisheries, among others. Management plans have been designed for pilot sites: the Juan Fernandez Archipelago in Chile; and Lobos de Tierra Island, Ballestas Islands and San Juan cape in Peru.
A first Total Economic Value calculation of the goods and services provided by the HCLME in 2015 indicates a delivery of US$19.45 billion per annum. This value comprises 58% from Chile (US$ 11.28 billion) and 42% from Peru (US$ 8.17 billion). Additionally, the area of direct influence of the Humboldt Current System generates 77% (US$ 14.97 billion) of the value produced by the HCLME, where the tropical area of Peru and the southern area of Chile added 2% (US$ 0.45 billion) and 21% (US$ 4.03 billion), respectively.
Possible scenarios of climate change in the HCLME were focused on the changes of biogeochemical alterations and forcing on the productivity and abundance-distribution of key species. Currently, high ocean productivity is an expression of the relatively high biomass of pelagic fish like anchovy, pacific jack mackerel and sardine, also other fishing resources like demersal fish (hake), cephalopod molluscs (squid), crustaceans (shrimp) have important contributions. Nevertheless, a deeper analysis of the impacts of climate on the fisheries and coastal areas of the HCLME is needed.
Marine mammals attract human interest – sometimes this interest is benign or positive – whale watching, conservation programmes for whales, seals, otters, and efforts to clear beaches of marine debris are seen as proactive steps to support these animals. However, there are many forces operating to affect adversely the lives of whales, seals, manatees, otters and polar bears – and this book explores how the welfare of marine mammals has been affected and how they have adapted, moved, responded and sometimes suffered as a result of the changing marine and human world around them. Marine mammal welfare addresses the welfare effects of marine debris, of human traffic in the oceans, of noise, of hunting, of whale watching and tourism, and of some of the less obvious impacts on marine mammals – on their social structures, on their behaviours and migration, and also of the effects on captivity for animals kept in zoos and aquaria. There is much to think and talk about – how marine mammals respond in a world dramatically influenced by man, how are their social structures affected and how is their welfare impacted?
Sharks, rays, and chimaeras (Class Chondrichthyes; herein 'sharks') are the earliest extant jawed vertebrates and exhibit some of the greatest functional diversity of all vertebrates. Ecologically, they influence energy transfer vertically through trophic levels and sometimes trophic cascades via direct consumption and predation risk. Through movements and migrations, they connect horizontally and temporally across habitats and ecosystems, integrating energy flows at large spatial scales and across time. This connectivity flows from ontogenetic growth in size and spatial movements, which in turn underpins their relatively low reproductive rates compared with other exploited ocean fishes. Sharks are also ecologically and demographically diverse and are taken in a wide variety of fisheries for multiple products (e.g. meat, fins, teeth, and gills). Consequently, a range of fisheries management measures are generally preferable to 'silver bullet' and 'one size fits all' conservation actions. Some species with extremely low annual reproductive output can easily become endangered and hence require strict protections to minimize mortality. Other, more prolific species can withstand fishing over the long term if catches are subject to effective catch limits throughout the species' range. We identify, based on the IUCN Red List status, 64 endangered species in particular need of new or stricter protections and 514 species in need of improvements to fisheries management. We designate priority countries for such actions, recognizing the widely differing fishing pressures and conservation capacity. We hope that this analysis assists efforts to ensure this group of ecologically important and evolutionarily distinct animals can support both ocean ecosystems and human activities in the future.
Knowledge of the extent and intensity of fishing activities is critical to inform management in relation to fishing impacts on marine conservation features. Such information can also provide insight into the potential socio-economic impacts of closures (or other restrictions) of fishing grounds that could occur through the future designation of Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs). We assessed the accuracy and validity of fishing effort data (spatial extent and relative effort) obtained from Fishers’ Local Knowledge (LK) data compared to that derived from Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) data for a high-value shellfish fishery, the king scallop (Pecten maximus L.) dredge fishery in the English Channel. The spatial distribution of fishing effort from LK significantly correlated with VMS data and the correlation increased with increasing grid cell resolution. Using a larger grid cell size for data aggregation increases the estimation of the total area of seabed impacted by the fishery. In the absence of historical VMS data for vessels ≤15 m LOA (Length Overall), LK data for the inshore fleet provided important insights into the relative effort of the inshore (<6 NM from land) king scallop fishing fleet in the English Channel. The LK data provided a good representation of the spatial extent of inshore fishing activity, whereas representation of the offshore fishery was more precautionary in terms of defining total impact. Significantly, the data highlighted frequently fished areas of particular importance to the inshore fleet. In the absence of independent sources of geospatial information, the use of LK can inform the development of marine planning in relation to both sustainable fishing and conservation objectives, and has application in both developed and developing countries where VMS technology is not utilised in fisheries management.
The Convention on Biological Diversity mandates the establishment of Marine Protected Area (MPA) networks worldwide, with recommendations stating the importance of ‘ecological coherence,’ a responsibility to support and perpetuate the existing ecosystem, implying the need to sustain population connectivity. While recommendations exist for integrating connectivity data into MPA planning, little advice exists on how to assess the connectivity of existing networks. This study makes use of recently observed larval characteristics and freely available models to demonstrate how such an assessment could be undertaken. The cold water coral (CWC) Lophelia pertusa (Linnaeus, 1758) is used as a model species, as much of the NE Atlantic MPA network has been designated for CWC reef protection, but the ecological coherence of the network has yet to be assessed. Simulations are run for different behavioural null models allowing a comparison of ‘passive’ (current driven) and ‘active’ (currents + vertical migration) dispersal, while an average prediction is used for MPA assessment. This model suggests that the network may support widespread larval exchange and has good local retention rates but still has room for improvement. The best performing MPAs were large and central to the network facilitating transport across local dispersal barriers. On average, passive and active dispersal simulations gave statistically similar results, providing encouragement to future local dispersal assessments where active characteristics are unknown.