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When the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park was rezoned in 2004, boosting its no-take percentage from 4.7% to over 33%, policymakers anticipated that some adverse impacts would be felt by commercial fishermen. The new closures would displace fishermen from some of their accustomed fishing grounds, and the displacement could lead to lower catches and/or higher costs from their having to fish elsewhere. In turn, these impacts could have financial ripple effects on fishing-related businesses (wholesalers, processors) and communities on shore.

MPA News

Letter: Many Chagossian refugees support the new MPA

Dear MPA News:
The September-October 2010 issue of MPA News was brought to my attention due to the article on MPAs and indigenous people, including its mention of the new Chagos Islands Marine Protected Area. I was born on the island of Diego Garcia in Chagos in 1970. When I was one year old, my family and all other remaining Chagossians were evicted from the islands to make way for a US/UK joint military base on Diego Garcia. We moved to Mauritius, and I now live in the UK.

MPA News

Seychelles announces "world's first carbon-neutral nature reserve"

The government of Seychelles in the Indian Ocean has named Cousin Island Special Reserve the "world's first carbon-neutral nature reserve". The carbon-neutral status reflects a desire by the protected area's management (Nature Seychelles, an NGO) to offset the greenhouse gases produced by tourists to Cousin Island each year. This includes thousands who fly to Seychelles from Europe.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

For ecosystem-based management (EBM) to be successful, science is needed to understand the natural system, social system, and governance system - as well as how each one interacts with the others. EBM, at its core, is policy based on scientific evidence and knowledge. The more robust the evidence and knowledge, the more robust the policy can be.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Dear MEAM,

Your August/September 2010 issue provides an excellent summary of the appropriate use of science in planning and management. It might surprise you that we used the methodologies so well described by Leanne Fernandes and Tundi Agardy in the original planning of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. Those same methodologies are also outlined in IUCN's Guidelines for Marine Protected Areas.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

In July, President Obama signed an executive order establishing a national ocean policy for the US (www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ceq/initiatives/oceans). The policy launches a process of coastal and marine spatial planning for the nation, carried out on a phased basis across nine regions (MEAM 4:1).

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Editor's note: Jeff Ardron, author of the following essay, is director of the High Seas Program at MCBI (Marine Conservation Biology Institute) in the US. He is also president of the board for PacMARA (Pacific Marine Analysis and Research Association) and an active member of the science board for the Global Ocean Biodiversity Initiative (GOBI).

Disclaimer: the views expressed in this article are those of the author alone, and do not reflect upon any bodies with which he may be associated.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

New Canadian foreign policy on Arctic includes EBM

The Canadian government has announced a new Arctic foreign policy to guide how the country works with its regional neighbors. The strategy, consisting of four pillars (exercising Arctic sovereignty, protecting environmental heritage, promoting socioeconomic development, and improving Northern governance), is designed to foster a stable region with dynamic growth and healthy ecosystems.

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