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The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

By Tundi Agardy, MEAM Contributing Editor (tundiagardy [at] earthlink.net)

Many agencies tout their commitment to adopting an ecosystem approach to management. What is actually meant by this commitment, and whether it constitutes a move toward ecosystem-based management, is open to question. The terms are often used without clear definition or, when defined, use so much jargon as to be indecipherable.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Dear MEAM:

I strongly agree with all the comments in your April-May 2011 issue on the need for integration in management of marine (and terrestrial) ecosystems. I note that this recognition was at the heart of IUCN's Guidelines for Marine Protected Areas and A Global Representative System of Marine Protected Areas (IUCN, World Bank, and GBRMPA, 1995).

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

US releases draft action plans for addressing national ocean policy objectives

The US national ocean policy prioritizes nine objectives to address challenges that face the country's coastal and marine resources. The federal interagency National Ocean Council is overseeing development of strategic action plans for each of the nine objectives. As a first step, the council has released draft strategic action plan outlines of each objective for public comment.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Editor's note: The goal of The EBM Toolbox is to promote awareness of tools for facilitating EBM processes. It is brought to you by the EBM Tools Network, a voluntary alliance of tool users, developers, and training providers.

By Sarah Carr

An EBM toolkit is a set of interoperating tools for conducting an EBM process. Using such toolkits allows users to tackle analyses that single tools cannot do alone. Examples of recent projects that have used toolkits include:

MPA News

It is increasingly recognized that "top-down" and "bottom-up" approaches are critical to governing MPAs. That is, MPAs should combine the benefits of state control and binding legislation (top-down) with the benefits of community-based approaches that empower local people and involve them in decision-making (bottom-up). By pairing the approaches, an MPA gets regulations that are acceptable to an engaged and supportive community.

MPA News

Underlying each edition of MPA News is a question: namely, what are the challenges that MPA practitioners face in aspects of MPA planning and management, and how are they addressing those challenges? Whether a particular article involves building MPA networks, or addressing an oil spill, or partnering with indigenous populations (to name some topics from this year's issues), the responses from practitioners are enlightening and are woven into the article.

MPA News

The Australian Government has released a proposal for a network of eight new MPAs for the country's South-west marine region. The network would be substantial: it would cover a total area of 538,000 km2, or roughly 40% of the region's Commonwealth waters, which start 3 nm off the coast. The proposal was released alongside a draft marine bioregional plan for the country's southwestern waters. Both proposals are now open for public comment.

MPA News

Larger MPAs generally cost less to manage per unit area than smaller ones, and no-take areas are cheaper to manage than multiple-use MPAs, according to a study by an Australian research team, published in the journal Conservation Letters. The study estimated the management costs of two scenarios for a potential MPA in Australia's Coral Sea: one a single large no-take area, the other a multi-use MPA of which nearly one third was no-take.

MPA News

Correction

In the March-April 2011 issue of MPA News, the article "In Colombian MPA, Management Files Suit to Stop Oil Exploration Inside Boundary" misidentified Marion Howard's affiliation with CORALINA, the Colombian government environmental authority for the San Andres Archipelago. Marion Howard is MPA advisor to CORALINA, not MPA coordinator.

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