The ‘Declaration concerning the prevention of unregulated high seas fishing in the central Arctic Ocean’ signed by the Arctic 5 nations, limits unregulated high seas fishing in the central part of the Arctic Ocean, and holds potential social, economic and political impacts for numerous stakeholders. In this paper, the four Interim Measures in the Declaration are discussed and what value these measures bring beyond the existing international agreements is explored. It is found that even though the Declaration fills a gap in the management of potential fish stocks in the central Arctic Ocean, adopts an appropriate precautionary approach and encourages joint research activities, there are both opportunities and challenges connected to its implementation. The most valuable and urgent Interim Measure is that of joint scientific cooperation, which will facilitate more region-specific research and an increased understanding of the fisheries as well as the broader Arctic environment. Furthermore, the research generated by this measure will provide an important decision base for both regulation and management of human activity in the Arctic.
Governance and Legal Frameworks
In Turkey, the coast is defined as the area between the shore line and the shore border line (SBL). The determination of the SBL is important in terms of both designating the boundary of coastal areas on the side of land and indicating the starting boundary of private property. From the perspective of property, it has been adjudged primarily in the Constitution and other related laws and regulations that the coasts are under the sovereignty and at the disposal of the state, that public welfare shall be pursued above all in benefiting from these areas and that all are free and equal to benefit from them. Nevertheless, coasts have become the subject of private property in the absence of Constitutional and legal regulations or before the determination of the SBL. The issue in question is also applicable to the Black Sea boundary of the Artvin Province. SBL detection work, which began with 36.2 km of Artvin shores in 1975, was completed only in 2012. The completion of SBL detection over approximately 40 years has led to the formation of private properties along the coast of the Artvin province.
The aim of this study is to detect the property structure and the size and distribution of land use along the coast of the Artvin province using Geographic Information Systems and to provide a new approach for transferring real estate infringing on the SBL to public use. In the conducted research, 209 parcels on the coast were found to infringe on the SBL partially or completely. Furthermore, both public institutions and citizens were determined to have used coastal areas in a way that infringes on the SBL, and there has been a lack of cooperation between the cadastre and the institutions responsible for the determination of the SBL. Lastly, in the transfer process of real estate on the coast to the public, a new approach has been presented regarding the undertaking of public expenses due to the annulment of title deed registries by both the government and the owners of real estate.
The emerging ocean energy industry, which seeks to utilise waves and tides to generate electricity, is developing in many jurisdictions. The UK, and Scotland in particular, is strongly interested in these technologies, and has made considerable efforts to reform its marine governance processes to better meet the needs of innovative new marine industries. This paper provides an industry perspective on this regulatory framework, reporting on the experiences of ocean energy project and technology developers. Semi-structured interviews with companies with practical experience with Scotland's regulatory framework provide evidence of a number of legal and regulatory challenges, as well as interesting insights into how developers are interacting with new marine governance systems. The paper details the findings of these interviews and offers some suggested directions for future research.
Eco-certifications have become an important site of power struggles in commodity sectors such as forestry, fisheries, aquaculture, palm oil, and soy. In each, multiple eco-certification initiatives have been developed and resisted through interactions among non-governmental organizations, governments, and commercial actors. This paper contributes to understanding how power is embodied in certifications by exploring how territoriality manifests in the international struggle over defining what products are ‘sustainable’ and which producers will have access to markets that require ‘sustainable’ products. Focusing on the wild capture fisheries sector in which the non-governmental Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) administers the preeminent eco-certification initiative, we explore the emergence of new fisheries eco-certification initiatives in Japan, Iceland, Alaska, Canada, and the US that insist there is no transnational monopoly on judgments over fisheries sustainability. We argue that these new eco-certifications attempt to defend and embed territorial social and regulatory relations of production within the contested domain of transnational sustainability governance. The initiatives accommodate both the territorially embedded material interests, institutions, and discursive strategies of producers (and their state supporting agencies) andtransnationally embedded governance norms for assessing and communicating sustainability. They also counter the globally applicable institutions of the MSC in favor of making space for state and non-state actors to contend with demands for sustainability in the global seafood market by combining place-specific attributes with transnational governance norms.
Combined pressures from climate change, resources demand and environmental degradation could lead to the collapse of marine systems and increase the vulnerability of populations dependent on them. In this paper an adaptability envelope framework is applied to investigate how governance arrangements may be addressing changing conditions of marine social-ecological systems, particularly where thresholds might have been crossed. The analysis focuses on three Australian case studies that have been significantly impacted by variations or changes in weather and climate over the past decade. Findings indicate that, in some cases, global scale drivers are triggering tipping points, which challenge the potential success of existing governance arrangements at the local scale. Governance interventions to address tipping points have been predominantly reactive, despite existing scientific evidence indicating that thresholds are approaching and/or being crossed. It is argued that marine governance arrangements need to be framed so that they also anticipate increasing marine social-ecological system vulnerability, and therefore build appropriate adaptive capacity to buffer against potential tipping points.
Separating myth and reality is essential for evaluating the effectiveness of laws. Section 7 of the US Endangered Species Act (Act) directs federal agencies to help conserve threatened and endangered species, including by consulting with the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) or National Marine Fisheries Service on actions the agencies authorize, fund, or carry out. Consultations ensure that actions do not violate the Act’s prohibitions on “jeopardizing” listed species or “destroying or adversely modifying” these species’ critical habitat. Because these prohibitions are broad, many people consider section 7 the primary tool for protecting species under the Act, whereas others believe section 7 severely impedes economic development. This decades-old controversy is driven primarily by the lack of data on implementation: past analyses are either over 25 y old or taxonomically restricted. We analyze data on all 88,290 consultations recorded by FWS from January 2008 through April 2015. In contrast to conventional wisdom about section 7 implementation, no project was stopped or extensively altered as a result of FWS finding jeopardy or adverse modification during this period. We also show that median consultation duration is far lower than the maximum allowed by the Act, and several factors drive variation in consultation duration. The results discredit many of the claims about the onerous nature of section 7 but also raise questions as to how federal agencies could apply this tool more effectively to conserve species. We build on the results to identify ways to improve the effectiveness of consultations for imperiled species conservation and increase the efficiency of consultations.
Environmental degradation continues in Thailand, despite the establishment of several environmental protected areas (EPAs) since their inception in 1992. EPAs aim to promote the conservation and sustainability of natural resources through decentralization and improving the participation of local governments and communities. Not all EPAs are successful, however. The purpose of this paper is to examine factors affecting the implementation of the EPAs program in Thailand, using the Phetchaburi and Prachuap Kirikhan EPA, in southern Thailand as a case study. Following the governability assessment framework, natural, social, and governing systems associated with the EPA were first described in terms of diversity, complexity, dynamics, and spatial and jurisdictional scale. Next, we examined the extent to which the EPA, as a participatory regulatory tool, corresponded with the natural and social systems it aimed to govern. The analysis reveals that the EPA did not function as effectively as it should be, even though the governing system was well structured to deal with complex coastal ecosystems in the area. The deficiency in the function of the EPA was due largely to poor sectoral coordination, weak financial commitments, and uncoordinated governing interactions. Based on these findings, we suggest that the EPA should be situated in a broader context of land and marine spatial planning and that it needs to be attuned to existing policies in a way that collaboration between agencies and policy integration is possible.
The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) states the need to effectively conserve at least 10% of coastal and marine areas of particular importance for biodiversity by 2020. Here, a new indicator-based methodological framework to assess biodiversity protection afforded by marine protected areas' (MPA) was developed as a quick surrogate for MPAs' potential conservation effectiveness: the Marine Protected Area Protection Assessment Framework (MaPAF). The MaPAF consists of a limited number of headline indicators that are integrated in two indexes: Legal protection and Management effort, which eventually integrate in the overall MPA Protection super-index. The MaPAF was then tested in the Mediterranean MPA network as a case study. Spatial analyses were performed at three meaningful scales: the whole Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean ecoregions and countries. The results of this study suggest that: 1) The MaPAF can serve as a useful tool for consistent, adaptive, quick and cost-effective MPA effectiveness assessments of MPAs and MPA networks in virtually any marine region, as the headline indicators used are commonly compiled and easy to retrieve; 2) The MaPAF proved usable and potentially relevant in the Mediterranean Sea where most indicators in the framework can be publicly accessed through the MAPAMED database and are planned to be regularly updated; 3) Protection afforded by MPAs is low across the whole Mediterranean, with only few MPAs having relatively high legal and managerial protection; and 4) Most Mediterranean countries need to devote substantially more work to improve MPA effectiveness mainly through increased management effort.
Inshore marine resources play an important role in the livelihoods of Pacific Island coastal communities. However, such reliance can be detrimental to inshore marine ecosystems. Understanding the livelihoods of coastal communities is important for devising relevant and effective fisheries management strategies. Semi-structured household interviews were conducted with householders in Langalanga Lagoon, Solomon Islands, to understand household livelihoods and resource governance in fishing-dependent communities. Households were engaged in a diverse range of livelihoods. Fishing, shell money production and gardening were the most important livelihoods. Proximity to an urban centre influenced how households accessed some livelihoods. Perceptions of management rules varied and different reasons were cited for why rules were broken, the most common reason being to meet livelihood needs. Current models of inshore small-scale fisheries management that are based on the notion of community-based resource management may not work in locations where customary management systems are weak and livelihoods are heavily reliant on marine resources. An important step for fisheries management in such locations should include elucidating community priorities through participatory development planning, taking into consideration livelihoods as well as governance and development aspirations.
The literature on ocean energy has, to date, largely focussed on technical, environmental, and, increasingly, social and political aspects. Legal and regulatory factors have received far less attention, despite their importance in supporting this new technology and ensuring its sustainable development. Building on the social sciences research agenda developed by the International network for Social Studies of Marine Energy (ISSMER) and published in Energy Policy, a complementary agenda for legal research linked to ocean energy was set out. Key directions for future research structured around the core themes of marine governance: (i) international law; (ii) environmental impacts; (iii) rights and ownership; (iv) consenting processes; and (v) management of marine space and resources were identified.