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The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Editor's note: The goal of The EBM Toolbox is to promote awareness of software tools for facilitating EBM processes, and to provide advice on using those tools effectively. It is brought to you by the EBM Tools Network (www.ebmtools.org), a voluntary alliance of leading tool users, developers, and training providers to promote awareness, development, and effective use of technology tools for EBM in coastal, marine, and watershed environments.

By Sarah Carr

MPA News

The Pacific island nation of Kiribati has more than doubled the size of its Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA), creating what is being called the world's largest marine protected area. The expanded MPA, announced by the Government of Kiribati in late January 2008, now encompasses an area of 410,500 km2 - up from 184,700 km2.

MPA News

Editor's note: The authors of the following essay are faculty members of the Department of Ecology and Hydrology at the University of Murcia, Spain. They serve as coordinators of EMPAFISH (www.um.es/empafish), a project funded by the European Commission to study MPAs as tools for fisheries management and conservation.

This article does not necessarily reflect the European Commission's views and in no way anticipates the Commission's future policy in this area.

MPA News

Editor's note: Joseph Uravitch is director of the U.S. National Marine Protected Areas Center. The MPA Center is a division of the Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) National Ocean Service.

By Joseph A. Uravitch

MPA News

New manual available on Marxan

A new user's manual is available for Marxan, a software program that provides support for decision-making on MPA design. The manual provides readers with the basic knowledge needed to use the software, including the questions it can help to answer, its limitations, and what data inputs are required.

MPA News

According to a goal set by global leaders at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development, a worldwide network of marine protected areas is supposed to be in place four years from now (MPA News 4:3). Termed the "2012 target", this goal is one of several established for the MPA community to meet in coming years. Measuring how effectively the world is meeting these objectives requires data.

MPA News

Editor's note: Sue Wells is a private consultant. She co-authored the landmark IUCN report A Global Representative System of Marine Protected Areas, and is lead editor of Reef Encounter, the newsletter of the International Society for Reef Studies.

By Sue Wells

MPA News

In South Africa in 2006-2007, a debate was waged over whether to reopen part of Tsitsikamma National Park to fishing. Designated in 1964, the park is among the oldest MPAs in Africa and has been fully no-take since 2000. The nation's Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEAT) proposed last year that roughly one-tenth of the park be reopened to line-fishing by members of local communities on a controlled and monitored basis. The proposal was contested by biologists and conservationists who said reopening the protected area would be a step backward for marine conservation.

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