Most of the world’s MPAs are partially protected: they restrict some extractive activities but allow others. For planners and decision-makers – especially in regions where extractive resource use is high – partially protected MPAs can be easier to designate than no-take areas. The partial protection indicates to resource users that socioeconomic and conservation objectives have been balanced.
In 2016, the EBM Tools Network compiled a list of hands-on, online activities for teaching about ecosystem services and ecosystem-based management that has since been updated with several more activities. Recently, a university professor asked the Network if any similar online resources existed for teaching MPA design and management. EBM Tools Network members pooled their collective knowledge again and came up with a list of resources for teaching about MPAs at all educational levels.
To that list, MPA News has added a compilation of in-person training opportunities that are aimed at MPA professionals. The combined list of resources and trainings is below.
By Anne Nelson and the IMPACT team
How many times have you had a discussion on the potential impact of future human activities in your MPA and the conclusion is, “We don’t have enough information on that species, habitat, use, or impact”? Often the reasons for the data gaps are that there is no funding for data collection without a related project, or not enough capacity, or it’s not in someone’s plan of work to focus on the activity and there’s no direction from leadership to do the work.
By Sibylle Riedmiller and Eleanor Carter
When Chumbe Island MPA was first conceived in the early 1990s we could never have foreseen the kind of struggles we were going to encounter. Having such an original approach, with Chumbe being the first privately managed MPA in the world, we understood that it wasn’t going to be easy. Building an ecolodge on a remote island, undertaking outreach, engaging and training community members to be conservation stewards, building capacity of former fishers to become environmental education specialists, introducing high-end hospitality skills into communities with little experience in this area — these were all challenges we expected and planned for.
These recent articles on MPA-related science and policy are all free to access.
Article: McDermott, G. R. et al. “The blue paradox: Preemptive overfishing in marine reserves.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 1802862115 (2018)
UK environment secretary calls for 30% of world ocean in MPAs by 2030
On 24 September, UK Environment Secretary Michael Gove called for 30% of the world ocean to be protected by 2030. The goal echoes the 30%-by-2030 target set by IUCN members two years ago. But it is rare for a politician to champion the goal specifically, particularly as most nations are still working to meet the 10%-by-2020 target for MPA coverage under Aichi Target 11. Gove’s announcement was made in New York City to coincide with the current session of the United Nations General Assembly. A UK Government press release is here. A UN Environment news article on Gove’s call is here.
How reliable are turtles for measuring ocean trash and marine health?
Sea turtles are widespread through the ocean. They are one of the most photographed, as well, when it comes to marine debris and plastic pollution. With snouts closed shut with plastic can holders, and stomachs full of debris, it seems that turtles and marine plastics almost go hand and hand. The question is how well could scientists use turtles as an indicator for ocean health? (via phys.org)
The Lenfest Ocean Program is pleased to announce a new research project now underway. North Atlantic right whales are among the most endangered marine species, with fewer than 500 individuals remaining. In the last few years, the species seems to have shifted northward in summer. There has also recently been an unprecedented number of right whale deaths in Canada’s Gulf of St. Lawrence, an area where right whale sightings had previously been rare. Officials in both the U.S. and Canada would like to know what is causing the range shift.
New Genetic Research Shows the Legacy of Fish Farm Escapees
New tests have discovered interbreeding between escaped farm salmon and native salmon stocks in Newfoundland due to the 2013 Cooke Aquaculture pen collapse in that area. This was not the first, nor the last of pen collapses for Cooke Aquaculture. During the summer of 2017, where over 260,000 farmed salmon escaped into Puget Sound, Cooke stated that survival of the escaped fish was low and interbreeding was impossible. The same statements were given in 2013. Obviously those fish did survive and found a way to flourish. (via Hakai Magazine)
"If the last blue whale choked to death on the last panda, it would be disastrous but not the end of the world. But if we accidentally poisoned the last two species of ammonia-oxidizers, that would be another matter. It could be happening now and we wouldn't even know..."
--- Microbiologist Tom Curtis in Nature, 2006
Most marine microbes are marine organisms too small to be seen by the unaided human eye (that is, roughly less than 0.1 mm). They make up 98 percent of ocean biomass, are the foundation of all marine food webs, and are a major driver of most of Earth’s biogeochemical cycles, including those of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and phosphorus (not to mention those of sulfur, hydrogen, sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and chlorine).