Understanding how people are dependent on Large Scale Marine Protected Areas (LSMPAs) is important for understanding how people might be sensitive to changes that affect these seascapes. We review how resource dependency is conceptualized and propose that it be broadened to include cultural values such as pride in resource status, scientific heritage, appreciation of aesthetics, biodiversity, and lifestyle opportunities. We provide an overview of how local residents (n = 3,181 face-to-face surveys), commercial fishers (n = 210, telephone surveys), and tourism operators (n = 119 telephone surveys) are potentially dependent on the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), a region currently experiencing significant environmental, social, and economic change. We found that commercial fishers and tourism operators were dependent not only financially on the GBR, but also because of their age, years in the industry and region, lack of education, and the number of dependents. These stakeholders lacked flexibility to secure alternative employment. All stakeholder groups, regardless of economic imperatives, were dependent on the GBR because of their cultural connections. We propose that resource dependency also provides an umbrella concept to describe the cultural services provided by an ecosystem, which can be described through place-based dependence and place-identity.
Access, defined as the ability to use and benefit from available marine resources or areas of the ocean or coast, is important for the well-being and sustainability of coastal communities. In Canada, access to marine resources and ocean spaces is a significant issue for many coastal and Indigenous communities due to intensifying activity and competition in the marine environment. The general trend of loss of access has implications for these communities, and for Canadian society. In this review and policy perspective, we argue that access for coastal and Indigenous communities should be a priority consideration in all policies and decision-making processes related to fisheries and the ocean in Canada. This paper reviews how access affects the well-being of coastal communities, factors that support or undermine access, and research priorities to inform policy. Recommended actions include: ensuring access is transparently considered in all ocean-related decisions; supporting research to fill knowledge gaps on access to enable effective responses; making data accessible and including communities in decision-making that grants or restricts access to adjacent marine resources and spaces; ensuring updated laws, policies and planning processes explicitly incorporate access considerations; and, identifying and prioritizing actions to maintain and increase access. Taking action now could reverse the current trend and ensure that coastal and Indigenous communities thrive in the future. This is not just a Canadian issue. Globally, the ability of coastal and Indigenous communities to access and benefit from the marine environment should be at the forefront in all deliberations related to the oceans.
As Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) is taking off world-wide as a holistic approach to marine management, there has been a growing need for the inclusion of socio-economic factors in this process. Yet, producing spatial data for cultural values, in particular, remain a challenge because these values are abstract and difficult to extract and quantify. Here, we demonstrate a simple repeatable manual technique for mapping cultural coastal values using in-person interviews and Public Participation GIS (PPGIS) techniques. With 47 participants in the Falkland Islands labelling 745areas of cultural coastal value, this technique gave rise to the identification of cultural coastal value hotspots across the islands in four categories: Natural Beauty, Recreation, Sense of Place and Cultural History. The locations of values were not affected by their distance to a settlement, nor were participants particularly likely to select areas close to their home. The resulting maps of coastal cultural values have been incorporated in the MSP framework and webGIS for the Falkland Islands, allowing for the integration of these social factors in the decision making processes.
Business names, as recorded by state tax departments, offer a possible indicator of cultural ecosystem services provided by nearby natural resources. Using oysters in the Chesapeake Bay as an example, we process spatial and quantitative analyses that can potentially identify cultural value for integration into monitoring efforts that aim to incorporate a variety of ecosystem services. Businesses named directly after oysters provide a useful lens to capture the many reasons people value oysters culturally, but also provide an easy aggregate indicator that could potentially be added to regular regional monitoring programs in order to factor in cultural value to adaptive management policies.
Despite the growing recognition of their importance, immaterial cultural values associated with the sea still tend to be neglected in marine spatial planning (MSP). This socio-cultural evidence gap is due to inherent difficulties in defining and eliciting cultural values, but also to difficulties in linking cultural values to specific places, thus enabling an area-based approach to management. This paper addresses three aspects that are important for including marine cultural values in MSP: Defining cultural values, identifying places of cultural importance, and establishing the relative significance of places of cultural importance. We argue that common classification schemes such as cultural ecosystem services can be a helpful starting point for identifying cultural values, but only go so far in capturing communities' cultural connections with the sea. A method is proposed for structuring a community-based narrative on cultural values and “spatialising” them for MSP purposes, using five criteria that can lead to the definition of “culturally significant areas”. A baseline of culturally significant areas is suggested as an aid to planners to pinpoint places where cultural connections to the sea are particularly strong. Throughout, we emphasise the need for participative processes.
Despite rapid advances in development of the ecosystem services (ES) concept, challenges remain for its use in decision making. Cultural ES (CES) have proven particularly difficult to pin down and resultant “shades of grey” impede their consideration by decision-makers. This study undertakes a literature review of CES to highlight the shades of grey, briefly illustrates findings by reference to the Swedish mountain landscape, then addresses potential implications for practical decision making. The concept of CES is complex and difficult to operationalize. The root of confusion appears to be a lack of rigour in identifying CES, hindering identification of proper methods for determining: the ecosystem elements that underpin CES; the beneficiaries of CES and how they value benefits delivered; and how CES may vary in space and time. We conclude by proposing a framework of questions, which we relate to the ES cascade model, that is intended to help researchers and decision-makers to reflect when considering CES. Answers to the questions should enable decision-makers to prioritise policy development or implementation in relation to the differing needs of potentially competing beneficiaries and what needs to be done or not done to the ecosystem, where, when and by whom.
Cultural ecosystem services (CES) are the non-material benefits obtained from ecosystems that contribute to human well-being. They are often under-represented in ecosystem services assessments due to difficulties identifying and valuing intangible attributes. This risks a lack of understanding and consideration of CES by decision-makers. A systematic review was done on coastal and marine CES to identify: geographic distribution of research; effective methods for assessing CES; specific habitats/ecosystems that supply CES; subcategories most frequently addressed; and knowledge gaps. Results revealed limited information exists about coastal and marine CES. There is a disparity in the global distribution of studies with little knowledge about CES in developing countries, as well as a disparity within developed countries; with most research undertaken in Europe and North America. There is a dearth of information on CES derived from specific coastal and marine habitats/ecosystems, reflecting a poor understanding of socio-ecological relationships and the different values people assign to these areas. There is a need to develop indicators with the capacity to measure and track changes in CES over time. Participatory approaches using qualitative methods were most effective in identifying CES; however, these lacked a deliberative element that would provide a comprehensive assessment of shared values in public areas. Overall, publications typically theorised about the usefulness of data on CES to inform and support decision makers, and more research is required on how qualitative data on CES can be represented for practical use by coastal and marine resource managers, and the value of these in the real world.
This report examines the extent to which available information supports characterization of community‐ specific ecosystem service values for Massachusetts’ ocean waters, and suggests ways to address key data gaps. The report focuses on three activities of particular interest to the Massachusetts Ocean Partnership and the state’s Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EOEEA): commercial fishing; vessel navigation; and recreational activities. For each of these activities, the report presents the data available to characterize potential linkages between communities and the location of activity in Massachusetts’ state waters. When practicable, we provide maps and tables to demonstrate these linkages. For commercial fishing and recreational activity, we present and discuss the available data on associated economic values. We also offer recommendations to improve the state’s understanding of important ecosystem services, particularly with respect to recreational activities.
The following Guidance Document (Guide) presents a method for agencies to consult with tribes more effectively and appropriately in advance of any proposed undertakings. It also suggests a means for tribes and other indigenous communities1 to relate their interests and concepts of landscape to federal agencies and other land and water management entities. The concept is rooted in a collaborative initiative related to offshore renewable energy development. This project–Characterizing Tribal Cultural Landscapes–was comprised of a team from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM) Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (POCS) Regional Office, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Marine Protected Areas (MPA) Center and NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS), two independent Tribal Facilitators, and representatives from the Tribal Historic Preservation Offices (THPO) of the Makah Tribe of Washington, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon, and the Yurok Tribe of California. The team worked collectively to develop a transferable best-practices method to identify areas of tribal use and significance that could be impacted by offshore renewable energy siting. Funding was provided by BOEM through an Interagency Agreement with ONMS. Additional information on the project’s background and implementation can be found in the Final Report, and on the website sanctuaries.noaa.gov/tribal-landscapes.
A significant barrier to the assessment of ecosystem services is a lack of primary data, especially for cultural ecosystem services. Spatial value transfer, also known as benefits transfer, is a method to identify the probable locations of ecosystem services based on empirical spatial associations found in other geographic locations. To date, there has been no systematic evaluation of spatial value transfer methods for cultural ecosystem services identified through participatory mapping methods. This research paper addresses this knowledge gap by examining key variables that influence value transfer for cultural ecosystem services: (1) the geographic setting, (2) the type of ecosystem services, and (3) the land cover data selected for value-transfer. Spatial data from public participation GIS (PPGIS) processes in two regions in Norway were used to evaluate spatial value transfer where the actual mapped distribution of cultural ecosystem values were compared to maps generated using value transfer coefficients. Six cultural ecosystem values were evaluated using two different land cover classification systems GlobCover (300 m resolution) and CORINE (100 m resolution). Value transfer maps based on the distribution of mapped ecosystem values produced strongly correlated results to primary data in both regions. Value transfer for cultural ecosystems appear valid under conditions where the primary data and value transfer regions have similar physical landscapes, the social and cultural values of the human populations are similar, and the primary data sample sizes are large and unbiased. We suggest the use of non-economic value transfer coefficients derived from participatory mapping as the current best approach for estimating the importance and spatial distribution of cultural ecosystem services.