Integrating stakeholder knowledge, views and needs in marine or maritime spatial planning (MSP) processes is important from a governance and social sustainabilityperspective both for MSP practitioners and for the evolving field of MSP research. Transboundary MSP appears particularly challenging for participation, which is why it is important to identify opportunities and address obstacles for stakeholder integration in this specific context. This article examines how stakeholder integration is currently practiced in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR), an enclosed sea where policy coherence and addressing conflicting interests across borders are especially relevant. It synthesises a range of challenges and enablers for stakeholder participation and mobilisation that have emerged from two transboundary MSP research and development projects, BaltSpace and Baltic SCOPE. The article finds that with the exception of statutory authorities, stakeholder engagement in the BSR is mostly limited to self-motivated stakeholders and consultation rather than more inclusive forms of participation. This can reduce the quality and legitimacy of MSP processes and risks to concentrate power in the hands of a small group of actors. For transboundary stakeholder integration to become more interactive and effective, five types of challenges need attention, regarding a) timing, b) governance systems, c) capacity and processes, d) stakeholder characteristics and e) knowledge and language. These obstacles can be addressed by (1) a dedicated research and development agenda that critically reflects on integrative tools and processes, and (2) by encouraging transnational institutions in the BSR to devote more resources to transboundary stakeholder integration and adopt flexible and adaptive strategiesand tools that can facilitate stakeholder involvement throughout the MSP policy cycle.
Transboundary Planning and Management
Fish stocks are managed within national boundaries and by regional organizations, but the interdependence of stocks between these jurisdictions, especially as a result of larval dispersal, remains poorly explored. We examined the international connectivity of 747 commercially fished taxonomic groups by building a global network of fish larval dispersal. We found that the world’s fisheries are highly interconnected, forming a small-world network, emphasizing the need for international cooperation. We quantify each country’s dependence on its neighbors in terms of landed value, food security, and jobs. We estimate that more than $10 billion in annual catch from 2005 to 2014 is attributable to these international flows of larvae. The economic risks associated with these dependencies is greatest in the tropics.
Coastal borderlands are subjected to particular socioeconomic, political and environmental dynamics in Europe and worldwide. The presence of the international boundary in these areas poses challenges in the process of Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM). The aim of this paper is to explore the existence, characteristics and the role that local cross-border cooperation plays in transboundary coastal zone management as well as the resulting potentialities of local endogenous development for improving the management and governance of the tourism sector, coastal development, fisheries and marine protected areas in the Albera Marítima (Northwestern Mediterranean). The applied methods included document review, statistical information and semi-structured interviews. The research shows that local agents are not capable of developing a stable cross-border network due to persisting lack of trust, weak joint strategic vision and high competitiveness in sectors like fishery and tourism. Based on particularly interesting initiatives occurred in Albera Marítima and other successful experiences in Mediterranean coastal borderlands, a proposal has been made to implement several measures, including a transboundary integrated coastal plan, the joint observatory of fishery resources and a scientific network platform. For the aforementioned issues, the study contributes to the ICZM literature by providing a new perspective on local transboundary cooperation.
Maritime Border Collision is one of the vital concerns in coastal states since the maritime boundaries of any two countries cannot be identified easily during fishing. Maritime domain awareness and the border line control are the essential requirement which happens via recognition, and observing of boats inside their country boundary. It is necessary to identify the maritime border and alert the fisherman during the fishing. In this paper, we propose an Automatic Identification System (AIS) which can protect fishermen by notifying the country’s border. If they are nearing towards the International Maritime Border Line (IMBL), an alert will be sent to coast guards via VHF set. Using the inbuilt GPS, AIS can find the location and transmits to the embedded systems, which gathers the recent position by comparing autonomy and longitudinal values with the existing assessment. The proposed system is validated under a case study in the maritime border between India and Sri Lanka, which is identified as Gulf of Mannar. It has been revealed that fishermen can aware that they are about to near the nautical border by means of visual and audio alert. Then, protectors in the coast preserve support and afford supplementary assist to those fishermen. This system also provides collision avoidance by using AIS/ ultrasonic sensors. It has better performance than the relevant methods such as RF (Charan et al. 2016), ECDIS (Vanparia and Ghodasara, International Journal of Computer Applications & Information Technology, 1:58–64, 2014), Android (Kumar et al. 2016), GSM and GPS (Sivagnanam et al., International Journal of Innovative Research in Advanced Engineering (IJIRAE), 2:124–132, 2015).
During their migrations, marine predators experience varying levels of protection and face many threats as they travel through multiple countries’ jurisdictions and across ocean basins. Some populations are declining rapidly. Contributing to such declines is a failure of some international agreements to ensure effective cooperation by the stakeholders responsible for managing species throughout their ranges, including in the high seas, a global commons. Here we use biologging data from marine predators to provide quantitative measures with great potential to inform local, national and international management efforts in the Pacific Ocean. We synthesized a large tracking data set to show how the movements and migratory phenology of 1,648 individuals representing 14 species—from leatherback turtles to white sharks—relate to the geopolitical boundaries of the Pacific Ocean throughout species’ annual cycles. Cumulatively, these species visited 86% of Pacific Ocean countries and some spent three-quarters of their annual cycles in the high seas. With our results, we offer answers to questions posed when designing international strategies for managing migratory species.
Marine migratory species are difficult to manage because animal movements can span large areas and are unconstrained by jurisdictional boundaries. We reviewed policy and management plans associated with four case studies protected under the Australian Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act 1999) in order to identify the coherence of policy and management plans for managing marine migratory species in Australia. Environmental policies (n = 23) and management plans (n = 115) relevant to marine turtles, dugongs, humpback whales, and migratory shorebirds were reviewed. Few of the reviewed policies (n = 7) listed protected species and even fewer (n = 4) listed protected marine migratory species. Marine turtles were most represented in the reviewed policies (n = 7), while migratory shorebirds were most represented in management plans (n = 59). Policies and management plans were much more likely to identify relationships to other policies or plans within the same jurisdiction than to different jurisdictions. The EPBC Act 1999 served as the central link between reviewed policies and plans, but the requirements of that Act were weakly integrated into the other documents. This weak integration and the biases toward specific migratory species in environmental policies and management plans are detrimental to the conservation of these Matters of National Environmental Significance in Australia. Any changes to the EPBC Act 1999 will affect all environmental policy and management plans in Australia and highlights a need for cooperative, multi-level governance of migratory species. Our findings may have relevance to the conservation of marine migratory species in a broader international context.
Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) has evolved over many years and since its early beginnings there has been a growing urgency to develop transboundary planning. This is because the borders of marine ecosystems and the dynamics of some maritime activities, such as navigation, are not restricted to or bound by specific political and administrative borders. Cooperation across borders has been promoted by higher political levels for decades, and the implementation of cross-border consultation procedures is regulated by law. However, literature suggests that transboundary interaction is not an obvious step in the process of MSP and that today's practices have various weaknesses. This paper examines current practices and procedures of transboundary MSP interactions in the Baltic Sea Region to date. It brings together results from MSP process observations and interviews with marine planners in two recent research projects (Baltic SCOPE and BONUS BALTSPACE). Our results confirm the need for transboundary interaction and integration. The research also shows that there are differences in how MSP agencies interact with domestic and foreign stakeholders. Furthermore, formal transboundary consultations often seem to be limited to topics of the environment and health, and to the stakeholders responsible in these realms. The results include a variety of ways to overcome these challenges.
Despite the increasing attention given to marine spatial planning and the widely acknowledged need for transnational policy coordination, regional coherence has not yet improved a great deal in the Baltic Sea region. Therefore, the main objectives in this article are: (a) to map existing governance structures at all levels that influence how domestic marine spatial planning policy strategies are formed, (b) to identify specific challenges to improved regional cooperation and coordination, and (c) to discuss possible remedies. Based on data from in-depth case studies carried out in the BONUS BALTSPACE research project, it is shown that, despite the shared goal of sustainability and efficient resource use in relevant EU Directives, action plans and other policy instruments, domestic plans are emerging in diverse ways, mainly reflecting varying domestic administrative structures, sectoral interests, political prioritisations, and handling of potentially conflicting policy objectives. A fruitful distinction can be made between, on the one hand, regulatory institutions and structures above the state level where decision-making mechanisms are typically grounded in consensual regimes and, on the other hand, bilateral, issue-specific collaboration, typically between adjacent countries. It is argued that, to improve overall marine spatial planning governance, these two governance components need to be brought together to improve consistency between regional alignment and to enhance opportunities for countries to collaborate at lower levels. Issue-specific transnational working groups or workshops can be one way to identify and act upon such potential synergies.
Land–sea ecological connectivity refers to the interaction (convenience or hindrance) of certain physical, chemical and biological processes between terrestrial and marine ecosystems. Research on land–sea ecological connectivity can provide important scientific bases for the conservation and restoration of biodiversity and ecosystems in terrestrial and coastal areas. On the basis of a literature summary of ecological connectivity, this paper focuses on the following: (1) summarizing basic concepts, representative phenomena on multiple spatiotemporal scales, and analysis methods of land–sea ecological connectivity; (2) discussion of the applications of land–sea ecological connectivity; (3) discussion of the relationship between human activities and land–sea ecological connectivity; (4) presentation of perspectives and recommendations on ecological restoration, protection, and biodiversity research, with emphasis on the principle of land–sea ecological connectivity. On the whole, we believe such connectivity in a region varies with changes in multiple physical and artificial factors, such as climate, land cover, biotic community and human activities. Human activities such as land use, engineering construction, urbanization and industrialization have continuously increased and cause irreversible disturbance and destruction of land–sea ecological connectivity, thereby threatening biodiversity and ecosystem services at various spatiotemporal scales. Hence, achievements of theoretical research and practical experience in ecological connectivity should be fully applied in coastal areas to maintain and restore land–sea ecological connectivity and remedy various problems that arise from the blockage and damage of ecosystem services.
The conservation of biological diversity represents a major challenge for modern societies. Research offers the fundamental information to advance and integrate our knowledge on ecological systems, their processes and interactions. Yet, the transfer of scientific knowledge and results represents a critical step towards enhancing conservation efficiency. Here, we use sea turtle research, as an example to test the potential and dynamics of international scientific cooperation reflecting the advancement of knowledge. The selection of sea turtles as a case study was mainly based on two factors. First, they represent a highly mobile group of species with cosmopolitan distribution that cross geopolitical borders, policies and agreements. Second, encouraging evidence on global population recovery are increasingly presented. We used research publications on sea turtles (from 1967 since 2016) as the main product of scientific knowledge, to develop a series of co-authorship networks. Countries that were mentioned in authors’ affiliations were used as nodes, with two nodes being connected if authors of these countries had collaborated as co-authors in a publication. The properties of the co-authorship networks revealed that sea turtle scientific collaboration networks are ] getting larger and spreading constantly over different countries through time. Network metrics revealed a robust and coherent network supported by numerous countries. Our results showed a steady flow of scientific information among countries within sea turtle research communities, a factor that might have contributed to the encouraging evidence on sea turtle population trends observed globally. This analysis highlights the potential benefits generated by international collaborations reflecting the integration of skills, scientific backgrounds and knowledge.